Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Spotlight of the Month: Joey Butler

Lean Horse Training Blog
by Joey Butler

This little adventure started back in the spring of 2009 when Kathy Youngren was accepted into the Badwater 135 footrace across Death Valley. I forget exactly how she put out the call for potential crew members, but like a dummy, I let her know I was interested. We talked about what was involved in crewing. I recall having reservations about my ability to even pace her but she seemed confident that I would be fine, so I agreed to be a crew member along with her husband Rob, Janice Anderson, Blake Thompson, and Kim Susor. I remember she and Rob told me this experience would either make me want to run a 100 or convince me to never, ever think about it again.

Well obviously it made me want to run a 100. I had never thought much about it until that week at Badwater. I realized those people were crazy, but a good kind of crazy. The seed was planted and I had to give it a shot.

I spent months researching every 100 miler in the US. I finally settled on Lean Horse in South Dakota. Now I just had to gather the nerve to send in the entry form. I had doubts about whether I was capable of finishing a 100 miler, but I knew that I had to find out. The only way to fail, in my opinion, would be to never give it a shot.

With that thought, I signed up for Lean Horse on August 28, 2010. I’ve spent most of the summer running long miles in preparation for this race. I’ve prepared as best I know how. I haven’t run as many miles as some others, but I’ve pushed myself to my own limits.

Now just a few days before the race, I feel pretty good. I’m healthy. I have no lingering issues from a previous injury. My only complaint has been that I am constantly tired. The big increase in mileage explains that.

To be honest, as I write this, I am very confident in my ability to finish the 100. I don’t really have a time goal. Breaking 24 hours would be nice, but since this is my first 100, my real goal is to just finish. I know it’s a long race and I assuredly will experience things in the race that I’ve never experienced before. I just have to do my best to overcome the hardships and keep moving forward.

Hopefully next time I write, I’ll do so while wearing my buckle. I know I will give my best effort, whatever that is.