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2 weeks and counting …


This is not the most important VT Beast post you’ll ever read (but I have linked to it).

Here we go again.

For the past few years, I’ve lined up at the foot of Killington and started the VT Beast. Each year, I’ve finished it – progressively longer and longer times spent on the mountain as HQ has ramped up the distance travelled and the relative difficultly of the obstacles.

A couple of years back, I wrote a post that sums up the entire pre-Killington experience – it basically boils down to “don’t panic” Go read it. It’s an important post that resonated with many. Maybe the most important VT Beast post you’ll ever read.

So, I’ll re-iterate.

Don’t. Panic.

1273909_530769387011412_1641808963_oKillington is a big mountain, but in 2015, it won’t be the hardest event Spartan put on (for the mainstream, that is) – but it very well could be the hardest thing you do this year.

Don’t. Panic.

There are considerations you need to have for this race – things you don’t need to worry about for a shorter event, or even another Beast distance event, but still, most people over think these way too much.

  • Bring a headlamp, even if you don’t think you need it.
  • Bring hydration, even if you don’t think you need it.
  • Ensure you run in a team wave, and relax in the biggest team tent.
  • Hydrate all f*cking week.
  • Eat well.
  • Pack nutrition.
  • The New England Spahtens is an amazing community – meet people, make friends on and off the course.

Also – Don’t. Panic.

10680066_718396234915392_4657320450429562675_oWear the same things you would wear to a regular OCR. Technical fabrics, compression fit. There will be spots that you find yourself far too hot, and spots you’re shivering.

Wear the same shoes that got you this far. It’s too late to change them, anyway.

Pack some food – whatever gets you calories, and sits well in your stomach. Don’t over think it.

Fill your pack with water – boring, plain, free water. Don’t over think it.

The mountain is steep. The event is long. The obstacles are challenging. Isn’t that why we’re all here in the first place? Don’t forget that.

Don’t panic. You’ve got this.

Happy smiling beautiful people who didn't die during the VT Beast. You won't die either!
Happy smiling beautiful people who didn’t die during the VT Beast. You won’t either!
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NJ Beast – Are you worried?

spartan-beast-awardSome do’s and don’ts for the upcoming NJ Beast!

Do check the weather a few days before to start planning.
Don’t obsess over the weather.

Do wear technical gear: wool, synthetic, cold-gear, wicking, whatever works for you in winter.No-Cotton-long-underwear
Don’t wear cotton.

Do wear shoes with tread.
Don’t duct tape your shoes.

Do keep moving.
Don’t stop for long.

Do fuel and hydrate before and on course.
Don’t ignore the signs of the wall or bonking*.

Do have fun.
Don’t give up.

Do carry out all trash, there are trash cans at the aid stations to deposit.
Do not litter; you can carry the fuel on course, you can carry the trash.


Check out Jessica Wohlen’s post: So You’re Running the Super (and/or Beast)…

* ~ Definitions courtesy of Heather Gannoe over at Relentless Forward Commotion.
The Wall:  A not so magical place that typically exists between mile 19 and 26 of a marathon.  You’ll be running along, feeling on top of the world, when BAM! a switch is thrown and everything hurts, you feel physically and emotionally drained, and for a few minutes, wonder why on earth you decided running a marathon would be a good idea.   There might even be tears. You have hit “the wall”.

Bonk:  Similar to “The Wall” (see above) but a “bonk” can happen at any time, during any race.  When an athlete goes from seemingly strong and well trained to a an utter, exhausted, mess, they have “bonked”.  A bonk is often related to poor nutrition and low blood sugar, and can often be overcome mid race with the right snacks and a second wind.