Get Busy Living - Page 4
#4 Organize a Race
Even the famed Dipsea began with a single trail runner's vision. One day over 100 years ago, somebody was on the trail between Mill Valley and Stinson Beach, California, and thought, "I'd be darned if this wouldn't make an amazing race!" That one person's vision has since brought joy (and plenty of poison-oak rash) to tens of thousands of athletes. And what trail runner hasn't had a similar fantasy while out on a training jaunt?
Lisa Smith-Batchen did. And she acted on her idea, in 2005 hosting the inaugural Grand Teton Trail Races. Since then, she's added distances and today it's a journey of 13.1, 26.2, 50 or 100 miles in the shadows of some of the world's most iconic peaks.
"When we first moved to the Tetons, one of my dreams was to put on a race," says the 48-year-old Smith-Batchen, an elite ultramarathoner, triathlete, and running coach. Smith-Batchen explains how friends helped her to quickly learn the ropes of race directing: obtaining Forest Service approval, finding sponsors, and accomplishing her main goal—to make the Teton races a family event.
Despite the endless hours of hard work and early morning anxiety attacks, says Smith-Batchen, "The joy comes in watching people toe the starting line, coming through aid stations with their son or daughter helping them out, and then crossing the finish line."