Sunday, January 22, 2012

Don't Let Wannabe Elites Dissuade You From Running Ultras

There's a weird phenomenon in our society, and this phenomenon extends to ultramarathons. People that are above average (but not great) tend to be... well, douchy.

You can divide people based on abilities. The best of the best are the elites. They win A LOT. The people directly behind them are the front of the pack. They may win occasionally, but usually lose to the elites. Next is the middle of the pack. These are the people that occupy the biggest area in the bell curve. Finally you have the back of the pack. These are the people that finish near the end. You know, like me.

The front of the middle pack is the group I'm calling out. These are runners that are pretty good, but not good enough to win races. They may place in a race if the competition is light. Otherwise they finish awhile after the leaders.

This group can usually be spotted based on their gear. They have the latest and greatest gadgetry. They have matching high-tech clothing. They have fancy shoes... most likely brand new. In essence, this runner is attempting to buy their way into the front of the pack.

So why does this group tend to be douchy? They have a superiority complex. They tend to look down on new ultrarunners looking to break into the sport. They routinely make the new runner feel as if they don't belong because the races should be reserved for the best of the best, which is where they believe they belong.

Of course, not all members of this group are d-bags. In fact, most probably aren't. It's a case of a few loudmouths drawing negative attention to the group as a whole.

Anyway, in the event you're ever approached by a member of this group and they spew their negativity, ignore them. They are not representative of all ultrarunners.

Need a graphic demonstration?


  1. Wow @ the video. I hope he knows about the squirrel.

  2. That's funny. There was a post on the RW Ultra forum recently saying don't think you are impressive if you are a middle of the pack ultra runner, you have to finish top 10%. So I guess I should just give up now? Most of the TRUE elites tend to be pretty cool and humble in my small experience.

  3. that's really an inferiority complex. they feel threatened by you and attempt to screw up you psyche with their bs. they feel better because they bought all the gear and put you down. i'm fairly sure we all have our insecurities but only a few handle them well, others we read about in posts like this.

  4. Those folks are definitely not indicative of the 95% of ultra-runners I have met. Unless maybe 50k'ers from California or something. I've DNF 7 of 11 100's in 4 years, and guess what, every time I go to a race, there is nothing but positive people that you met from a previous race. No one gives two shits how many times you DNF, they wanta see you successful.