Friday, June 20, 2014


I had my FIRST DNF last weekend  at Bryce 50 mile and am rather STOKED about it !
I am not encouraging people to DNF- a  point of ultrarunning is certainly  to push yourself to your limits.
I am encouraging those who DNF to EMBRACE  it for what it is ! Do NOT HATE yourself (as I saw so many runners do) - such a waste, when you pay for the race/travel etc !

Here's the story; 
28 miles in, my husband got ill at the high altitude and could not eat/drink without throwing up. He spent 2 hours trying to regroup, but just could not. The hardware in my old tibia fracture was giving me greif, and I thought it wise to pull out with him too. That aid station was more like a MASH unit with many people sick/bleeding noses/ etc at the altitude.  So anyways, we ended up spending time with others  at the remote aid station, waiting for a ride.... and this is when it occurred to me.... there are actually some....


1. You get to hang out at the aid station and graze,  get into the vibe and people in the same situation.
2. You get to reminisce on the beautiful parts of the run. 

2. You get to STOP and take in the views at that aid station (views at 27 mile- Nice! ). Too bad Jim diddn't see this, as he was busy being nauseated.
3. You get to be a SPECTATOR and watch others come in, cheer them on- or help them if they fall over!
     ... It was great to cheer people on! but I held back trying not to be too 'perky' for those who were ill.

4. You get to MEET people who are also DNF ing and hear their stories ! It felt like a 'support group' .
     ... one guy, who reported to have done several 100 km/100 milers made us feel better by saying ;
          "pfft, I DNF all the time ! " I guess he just picks and choses to finish when he feels good- nothing wrong with that !

5. You get a COOL 4X4 backroad  ride home from your remote aid station, with some crazy driver.
     .... Seriously,  the next day my NECK was more sore from hitting the roof of the car than my legs were!

6. You  have ENERGY  the next day to GIVE BACK to the race !  We went to the finish line and drove 100 milers back to their hotels. They GREATLY appreciated it, and it made us feel much better!  I frown on people who DNF and just go home to pout- what a selfish  waste !

and my FAVORITE !!! .... 

7. You get to RECOVER  faster, meaning you might even be able to hit a cool run/hike in the area, over the  next couple of days! an And we CERTAINLY did ! Bryce canyon ROCKED ! ... literally.

So Don't hate yourself, LEARN from the experience, make the MOST of it... besides,  there is always ANOTHER RACE ! 


1 comment:

Olga King said...

Last DNF I had was at Ozark 100 in November (I have 5 DNF's at 100's) - and felt bad only about 1 of them (when I DNF'ed because I was in piss-poor mood and bored, although I always said if I am bored, I better stop ultras...the rest of my DNF's are from serious injuries). Anyway, that last one was the first when I was NOT pouting on myself (older and wiser) - I was happy to sleep in bed at night, wasn't going to see any views at night anyway, my husband DNF'ed as well, and we could coddle, we drove back to his mom early and spent time with family, no recovery time needed indeed, and we cheered a few finishers before left (it is rather a lonely race). I also got to hang out at the AS I dropped at while waiting for the ride and helped to run an AS (had suddenly found friends from the past there), then shared stories with other, more sad, DNF'ers in the car. Yup, good and bad, life is like that! Actually, come to think, when I DNF'ed due to boredom at Tahoe, I also helped at AS and shared stories. I think when we MAKE decisions, we feel better about them. When something outside us (like injuries) force us out, we may feel much crappier.