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The North Face Endurance Challenge

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How I’m training for a 50-mile ultra marathon trail race

By Andrew Skurka / October 22, 2014 /

Six weeks from this Saturday, I’m racing The North Face Endurance Challenge GORE-TEX 50-Mile in California’s stunning Marin Headlands. I ran this same race in 2010, a few months after the Alaska-Yukon Expedition, and it will be my first ultra marathon since. With $30,000 in prize money for the top 3 male and female finishers, this…

7 hours, 20 minutes: a realistic goal for 50 miles based on training runs?

By Andrew Skurka / November 3, 2014 /

Before every high school cross-country and track meet, my coach Frank Mooney gave each runner an index card with a goal time and suggested splits written on it. A goal time was meant to be challenging but within reach on a good day, and the suggested splits helped us stay on track through the start,…

Pace charts for TNF 50. And how everyone starts too fast.

By Andrew Skurka / December 2, 2014 /

The two weeks before a big race can be challenging in the enforced inactivity. Between mid-October and mid-November I ran about 14 hours per week on average, but during my taper for The North Face Endurance Challenge 50 Mile Championship this weekend I’m running less than half that, creating a lot of free time. However, I have found it…

Gear List — The North Face 50 Mile Championship

By Andrew Skurka / December 3, 2014 /

The North Face 50 Mile Championship is now just three days away. I began thinking about the clothing, footwear, and equipment that I would use months ago, giving me ample time to obtain, test, and familiarize myself with different options during my ultra running training. And now that I have a good sense for race…

TNF 50 Mile Race Report: Reflections on pacing, nutrition, training, and a lot more

By Andrew Skurka / December 8, 2014 /

It almost certainly will not be another four years until I race again. But overtime my recollection of The North Face 50 Mile Championship will change: I’ll forget the finer details, and my reflections will be influenced by future developments and conversations. So my race report is meant to be as instructive to me as…

The deepest and most talented TNF50 field ever?

By Andrew Skurka / December 9, 2014 /

The starting line of last weekend’s The North Face 50 Mile Championship was a who’s-who of the ultra running scene, primarily domestic but with some international flavor, too. Some of the faces I knew from Boulder or past industry events like Galen Burrell, Sage Canady, Dave Mackey, and Jorge Maravilla. But others I knew only…