Thursday, January 3, 2008


My friend Peter Lubbers (a hell of an ultramarathoner and blog owner of: ) "tagged me" with this list of questions. So, I will try to respond below (and then figure out who else to tag):

1. the most memorable moment on the trails was…

That is a difficult one to pick. I have so many, such as my first 100 mile finish, my first hallucinations due to sleep deprivation during a run, the view of Tahoe at midnight from the TRT, the friends I have met and the beauty I have seen in the surroundings. If forced to pick one, I think it would have to be meeting up with Lon Monroe and Mario Jackson in the last 20 miles of the Quicksilver 50 miler. I started the race against all wisdom after coming down sick as a dog that week. I was throwing up early in the race and wanted to stop at the 50km mark (but didn't because I didn't want a DNF and because I am stupid). A few miles later, after I was barely shuffling over the hot dry trails, these two guys came up on me and through their humor, support and quick friendship they helped me finish the 50 miler. They could have left me behind and, in fact, by staying with me I blew their guaranteed chances of a sub-10 50 miler. But they made sure I finished.

2. The best new trail I discovered in 2007 was…

Since all my races in 2007 were on "new trails" (new to me...except the Dipsea and the Lake Merced loop), I won't count those. But "discovered" on my own, I have been running recently on the trails in San Bruno Mountain park. Beautiful! The trails range from wide to single track. They aren't long, but can be combined for some great running with views of the San Francisco Bay Area.

3. My best performance of the year was…

I was very happy with my sub 4 hour 50km at Ruth Anderson, and my win at the Fear and Loathing 50km. But my greatest personal sense of accomplishment was going sub-30 hours at my first ever 100 miler - the Tahoe Rim Trail (which I finished side by side with Peter Lubbers).

4. I do not know how I previously survived without...

....the advice, support and friendship of MY running community. We have formed a group that we dubbed UltraHolics. Consisting of many people such as Rajeev, Chihping, Anil, Vinod, Peter, Michael, Yuki, Mark, and others, we have created a friendly group to support and encourage each other. In addition, the friendship and support I have received from others outside that group such as Lon Monroe, Mario Jackson and Eric Clifton really makes this sport special. But most of all - the support and energy we all get from our crews! They are invaluable whether assisting with drop bag prep, aid station help or keeping a sleep-walking ultrarunner company at 3 a.m.

5. The person I would most like to meet on a trail in 2008...

Wow - that is really a tough one. While running races, I have met all my Ultraholic buddies on the trails and others including some legends such as Eric Clifton. I haven't met Tim Twietmeyer or Scott Jurek so perhaps one of them. Although, seeing my crew at each aid station is still a wonderful boost.

6. The race I am most excited about for 2008...

As of now it would have to be Leadville 100. However, I am going to try and get into the MontBlanc Ultra 100 and, if I make it, it may be that one. However, now I put my name in for Hardrock and will also enter Wasatch Front and possibly Death Valley (well, if I actually enter and am accepted). So, if all those would either be Leadville or Hardrock. If I get into Death Valley, I will certainly be excited, but I think the fear will negate that thus allowing LV or HR to win the top spot.

OK - I have now tagged 3 other UltraRunners: Rajeev, Anil and Chihping. Looking forward to seeing their responses!


Chihping Fu 傅治平 (超馬阿爸) said...

Hi Alan,

Thanks for tagging me. I'll write up my year-end review soon, I promise!

See me and my son at San Bruno Mtn back in 2002 - Giants in Their Own Right. It's really a nice place to trail running.

Don't forget 8am this Sun to sign up Miwok 100K, where you'll meet the best ultrarunners up close on this out-and-back course. Scott Jurek

At last, glad to drag you fast guy into the slow and endured ultrarunnig and you have fun.

Happy New Year!


Alan said...

Thanks for reminding me about Miwok (I waited a few minutes too long last year and was 1,000,000 or so on the waitlist :)

Great photo of you two. Looking forward to seeing your responses.

Happy New Year

Michael Kanning said...


It was good to read your 2007 recap and other recent reports. Congratulations! And what with your recent "Texas double", I expect you to give Anton Krupicka a run for his money at Leadville :) I'm sure you will have a great 2008.


anil said...

Hi Alan,

Thankyou for including me for this fun set of tagging.

Wow what a year it has been in 2007, enjoying those beautiful trails of TRT together.

Wishing you a equally fun 2008. stay healthy.


Alan said...


I know Peter tagged you at the same time as me - so looking forward to see your responses. No, I doubt I will threaten anyone at Leadville - but looking for a good, solid and FUN race.


Thanks - really enjoyed doing so many races with you in 2007. Hope your Rashmi has forgiven me for putting the TRT 100 in your head :)

Looking forward to more runs with you (and everyone else) this year.

Bill said...

Hi Alan,

Your name is right below mine on the HR100 entrants list. It took me a while to remember that I had met you in the Chicago Airport and that is why your name is familiar. I wish you the best luck in the HR drawing!

Take Care

Alan said...

Thanks Bill - I only have one "ticket" (around 14% chance I believe). Good luck to you!