Geography’s Andy Emerson places 6th in 100-mile race
Imagine running down a narrow leaf-covered trail full of rocks, roots, and downed trees in the middle of the night, with a lamp that isn’t working properly sometimes leaving you in total darkness.
Imagine falling, not once, not twice, but five times while trying to maneuver across rugged terrain with an elevation gain of 10,000 to 12,000 feet. Imagine hearing critters rustling in the bushes surrounding you. Imagine being alone in the wilds of Missouri, running 100 miles, from dawn to dusk to dark to dawn again. Running, running, running.
Imagine getting lost for a mile and a half, slipping and hitting your hand on a sharp rock, bleeding hard until rescued by a race aid a short distance away who put a bandage around it. Imagine your quads getting so sore you have to slow to a walk. Imagine being fueled by gels filled with maple syrup and honey, washed down with water and sports drinks, because the checkpoint food – quesadillas, grilled cheese, soup, cookies and fruit – is too difficult to process later in the race, as the running diverts blood away from the digestive system.
Imagine doing all this because you love to.