Bryon Powell and Meghan M. Hicks November 18, 2011 TWEET COMMENTS 0

Mile-High Motivation - Page 6

Krupicka says the current generation of runners is experiencing a mental evolution of what is possible, and he is inspired by this incipient shift. "Look at Kyle, who ran 23 hours at Hardrock," says Krupicka, referring to Kyle Skaggs' course record-shattering performance at the 2008 Hardrock 100, the same race that baffled Dakota Jones into becoming an ultrarunner. "The next year, Karl Meltzer, who's been around since the beginning of time, lopped two hours off his best time, simply because of this mental shift."

As Krupicka and Jornet screamed down the buttery trail called California Street beyond Foresthill at Western States, Krupicka says his will to win was fiercely reinvented. For miles, they "tried to drop each other, to make the other crack."

The American River intersects the course about 80 miles into the race, and Krupicka and Jornet were shuttled across together in a small rubber raft. Krupicka reflects, "He and I were doing this crazy thing. We'd just run for 80 miles, and now we're sitting next to each other. It was hot. We were tired. Kilian and I definitely had a bond."

After the boat ride, Krupicka bested Jornet to the finish line in an under-course-record time. The last 20 miles of Krupicka's race had one small hitch: Roes passed him and went on to win the race by less than seven minutes. But in the context of everything that went down that day, Krupicka says, "How could I be disappointed?"

Krupicka's Lessons on Running Locally

  • Run some of the same trails every day and see subtle change. In 2010, Krupicka ran up Green Mountain outside of Boulder 296 times, and through that he was "in tune with the cycles of seasons, the changing nature of the trail, the weather, everything."
  • Foster an intimate interaction with the land like you develop with close friends. Says Krupicka, "That's an enormous part of putting down roots, appreciating where you are and being happy in life."

Susan Nuzum's Foundation

On the streets and trails of Boulder each morning, you'll find Susan Nuzum, master's standout in marathon and shorter-distance trail and road races, on her daily run. Some days you'll find her alone with her devoted running partner, Elsa, her yellow lab, other times, with members of the Boulder Trail Runners, chatting and laughing through a group run.

"I run almost everyday," says Nuzum. "It's a part of what I do. If I miss a run, all day I feel like there's something I haven't done."

Nuzum's path to this place, where running serves as a foundation for the rest of her life, has been a winding, and not always intentional, one. After collegiate tennis and swimming, Nuzum graduated to triathlons. For years she competed in triathlons up to the Half-Ironman distance, until she lost interest in swimming and cycling. She says, "After so many years, I just got tired of them." By default, Nuzum became a road runner.

Trail racing happened, too, by circumstance. Nuzum says that she stepped off the pavement on some of her training runs and began exploring Boulder's trails. Training runs led to trail races, which have taken Nuzum to her current place in running.

"I'm motivated to do the things that make me happy, the things I like. The act of running motivates me," says Nuzum. "I enjoy the feeling I get, sometimes during, but mostly after a run. I feel as if I'm making the most out of the body that was given to me." While Nuzum rarely misses a run, she isn't inhuman. She admits, "I'm not motivated to go on every run, say, when it's 10 degrees outside. But, it's a habit, and I'm never sorry that I've gone out."


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