Often described as one of the toughest bike races in the lower 48 states, the Arrowhead 135 challenges even the most prepared riders. This is a journal by a non-athlete's participation in an event where starting is often just as much a challenge as finishing.

Qualifications: Zero.
August 24, 2010
Kind of major setback today. Eric pulled down the registration form for the Arrowhead Ultra, and on the form is a list of qualifications necessary:

· Officially finishing a previous edition of the Arrowhead.

· Officially finishing a 24 hour bike race, on mountain trail or road, with a minimum of 150 miles completed for off-road, or 300 miles on road.

· Officially finishing the Susitna 100 or a similar type of winter event.

· Officially finishing an endurance mountain bike race of 100 miles minimum within the time allowed.

I was kind of blindsided as these qualifications are not listed anywhere else on the site, and the 2011 registration form wasn't available until just a couple weeks ago. I knew that registration opened next week, so I guess I would have seen it then, but this is huge. I have none of those qualifications (obviously).

There are two kind of major problems here. First is that there are not really all that many (or any) race options between now and December (except this saturday - ha!). Second is that I'd planned on spending the next 6 months preparing for THIS race, I don't really know if I can get prepared for something 24 hours long before the end of November, even if i could find a race. The registration for the Arrowhead cuts off on Dec 15.

So this is really kind of a drag. This was to be kind of an important step, even though I'm not all that keen on competition. I might have to wait until next spring to do some endurance events. I don't know. All I know is that I'm disappointed and frustrated and feeling like maybe I shouldn't be pretending to play with real athletes.

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