|Check in nerves|
I was truly more nervous about the gear check-in than actually toeing the start line. Did I forget something? Have I made good fueling choices for all the stages? Did I label everything as required? Long adventures like this can be completely deflated by a single bad choice and even though I had planned for most scenarios, you just never know how the day is going to go...let alone a week.
A "Bumpy" Start
As the white tents came into view, so did the amazing views of the Grand Canyon. It's hard not to be impressed with the scale and majesty of millions of years of geologic forces at work. Between getting oriented at our tents, making introductions to new friends/tent-mates and wandering out to the edge of the Grand Canyon for photos, no one was really paying attention to the clouds that were slowly rolling up to our camp.
Sprinkles and low clouds turned into the tent-shaking gusts of a full storm system that would relegate everyone into their tents for about 45 minutes. It was actually cool being forced to sit down with new faces and friends to learn who you'd be spending the week with.
- Brooke (USA)
- Joanne (AUS)
- Ryan (UK)
- Nick (UK)
- Erik (CAD)
- Patrick (USA)
- 6 am wake up, then coffee (no breakfast)!
- Change into race clothes, re-pack gear
- Begin racing at 8 am
- (Back at camp) Wipe down, clean up, wash/rinse clothes
- (optional medical tent visit)
- Recovery drink/hydrate, stretch and unwind
- Eat dinner, hydrate
- Prep pack for next stage
- Go to bed ~7:30/8
- (wake up around 3 to pee) 😜
- Repeat for 7 days
|Arm sleeves converted to leggings 🤦🏽♂️|
|Finish line feels|
Frequently Asked Questions
Why did you do this?
Endurance athletes like myself are always looking for the next challenge - the next hardest thing. Stage racing combines several of my passions - camping, hiking, backpacking and ultra-running to places/views where only your feet can take you. G2G is one of those "local" opportunities that not only checks all my boxes but traverses landscapes that very few people will get to see in their lifetime.
Will you do it again?
Given the positive experience, community vibe and overall good time I had meeting people and doing what I love...yeah, I could see myself doing something like this again. There are plenty of stage races around the world that I love to try but I hope I'm not let down by comparison. G2G has set a high bar!
Are you crazy?
We all have a little bit of crazy brewing inside us - it's just a question of how you channel it. Ultra-running is not just something you jump into. It takes years of patience, training and gradually being able to wrap your head around the solidarity and time it takes to accomplish these distances.
Did you have fun?
Yes. I love adventuring. I also love the community that comes with collective success and suffering. I have never "felt" a race like this before - the family that's created over the course of a week is truly unique and something I'll carry with me for the rest of my life.
What was the hardest part?
Specific to racing, the relentless sand of G2G is a doozy. It gets everywhere and is super-annoying (especially the dunes). However, even if you don't have the opportunity to train in the sand, you can effectively run/hike if you know how to navigate it. Alternatively, the hardest part (especially for a first-time stage racer) is the acquisition and inventory of gear, planning your nutrition and testing EVERYTHING prior to the race.
What did you enjoy the most?
Aside from the stunning visual landscapes, the community of people that come together for this event is truly magical. Athletes, volunteers, physicians, civil servants and race directors do everything in their power to get you to that finish line.
- Running Gear
- Pack: USWE Hajker Ultra 30L
- Shirt: Montane Dart Lite
- Shorts (base): 2XU core compression
- Shorts (outer): Nike Stride
- Poles: Leki FX.Superlite
- Shoe: Hoka Speedgoat
- Socks: Injinji mid-weight trail
- Gaiters: Awksports shoe covers
- Gels: VFuel
- Electrolyte: First Endurance EFS
- Dinners: Pinnacle Foods
- Camping gear
- Sleeping bag: REI Magma 30
- Pad (inflatable): Therma-a-rest Neoair Uberlite
- Pad (base): Gossamer Gear thinlite
- Shoes: Xero aqua cloud sandals
- Pants: Patagonia Terregonne jogger pants
- Top: Rabbit Deflector
- Jacket: Feathered Friends Eos