Catching Up with Ultrarunner Emilee Walker

Emilee Walker, Wright Training athlete, recently finished her first 60K of the season. We had a chance to catch up with her about expectations, race nutrition, and what her season looks like.

Firstly, what was the race? Scout Mountain Ultra Trail 60k (37.5 miles)

How long did you train for the race and what was your general training plan? It's taken me my entire life to get to where I am today and the job is far from over. I'm not what some consider to be a "natural athlete." I have to work really hard for it every day! But, for this particular race, I started training in March. I'm terrible at sticking to a specialized running schedule, I need to be flexible for all the variables that can occur on a daily basis. But time on my feet and consistently increasing mileage are the main focus for me. I also incorporate other training strategies such as speed work, long easy runs, and hill repeats. This was a difficult spring to get miles in because of the onslaught of liquid sunshine. I learned to appreciate and trust in all my cross-training, specifically Wright Training. Even though I wasn't reaching my weekly mile goals I knew the training I was getting at the gym would reflect and improve my running economy. Greater Strength DOES equal Greater Endurance.

What were your expectations going into the race? I never have expectations. Expectations are the fast track to disappointment! I have 3 rules going into a race (or any endeavor for that matter) 1- Have FUN. If you're not having fun then why bother? (And yes, running IS fun) 2- Don't get hurt. Obviously 3- Try my best. I really can't seem to come up with a solid reason as to why I shouldn't always try my best... For this race, I was hoping to break the 3rd place streak I've had for the last couple of years, but I wasn't attached to it. Anything can happen in a race and you have to be able to surrender and let go of your "race plan." I happened to feel fantastic that day, so I pushed and went for it.

How did you stay energized during? I have found through trial and error that eating every 30 minutes is what I need to stay fueled and focused for these races. Eating during races sucks! Gels make you gag. Solid food makes you cramp. Sports drinks give you a slosh belly. I have a pretty strict diet at home but during a race, the main thing is calories in -- whatever form is easy and appealing at the moment -- calories!!

How did you end up? I took 2nd Place Female. I finished strong and healthy with a sh*#-eating grin on my face.

Do you have any other races planned? I have The San Juan Solstice 50mile June 27. A 50k in August, although I haven't decided which one yet. Then I'll be hanging with the Big Girls for my first "true" ultra, The Bear 100 mile in September.

What classes did you participate in at Wright Training? I train twice a week with Sports Maintenance. This spring I signed on for the 8-week Run/Bike progressive fitness class, which I strongly believe got me ready for this race. A big congrats Emileeiee and we can't wait to see what the rest of her season looks like.

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