The Western States 100 Countdown…

The Western States 100-Miler is on Saturday. This journey started last October when I finished the Oil Creek 100. I earned a ticket into the Western States lottery, and a couple of months later, my name got drawn despite odds of about 1 in 40.

I take a pretty laid back approach to training, but with that being said, I’m a planner. Leading up to Western States, I wanted a 50k and a 50 miler under my belt. I got neither! At Traprock 50k, I faceplanted onto some rocks and I got pretty banged up. It resulted in a DNF. At Rock the Ridge a few weeks later, I was still bruised (physically and mentally), and it resulted in my second DNF in as many months.

Thankfully, things clicked back into place just in time, and I was able to resume training aggressively in mid-May. I had just enough time to sneak in a hard three-week block. I did just that, banging out weeks of 100 and 105 miles, respectively. I wrapped things up with a great race the following week at the Cayuga Trails Marathon. My training wasn’t perfect, but I suppose it never really is.

At Western States, I will be running in Wildhorse 3s. I’ve recruited my friend, Laura Kline, to take me through the last 38 miles. I will be fueled by Tailwind, Huma Gels, a ProBar or two and Clif Bloks. Vegan Power!

The Good:

  • Western States favors “runners” and I’m a runner
  • The trails are so, so nice, and we will be on the regular course, not a snow course (intense heat has melted much of the snow from the crazy winter in the Sierras)
  • I’m at or near my ideal race weight
  • I already have a hundred under my belt so I have an idea what it takes
  • This is the big dance. If there’s ever a time to leave it all out there, this is it.

The Bad:

  • It will cool off slightly for race day, but it will still be hot. 90+ in Foresthill and 100+ in the canyons 
  • The biggest hill here I’ve trained on is about 600 feet of elevation change top to bottom – will my quads hold up on the Western course?
  • Traveling long distances for races is tough!

The weather is a huge variable at Western States. This year, it will be about 50 at the start in Squaw Valley. It will be over 100 degrees at El Dorado Creek, but it should cool off to the low 90s by Foresthill. It will be hot but a little better than it could have been. We dodged a bullet because its scalding out there right now!

I’m really looking forward to this experience. I think I’ve got a good run in me.


I’m not going to be shy. Here are my goals:

A Goal: between 18 and 19 hours

B Goal: between 19 and 20 hours

C Goal: under 24 hours

I believe there is some tracking available on the Western States website.

Also, follow iRunFar on twitter here.

See you in Squaw!

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2 Responses to The Western States 100 Countdown…

  1. Ken Mann says:

    Best of luck out there!

  2. bthomas757 says:

    You did it! Congratulations Jason. The most famous ultra marathon in the world. It is something you never forget.

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