A fatass race is one with no admission, limited or non-existent aid and no medals.

A fatass race is usually done on a looped course, in a remote area and few people.

A fatass race might be my new favorite way to run.

[photo: Michael Valone]

This past weekend I was able to participate in my good friend Michael’s second fatass race. I have really been enjoying travelling to run on the weekends, and this weekend’s trip was needed in a big way.

I was scheduled for 15 miles easy paced and the mile loop trail set up for the 8 hour event was picture perfect. There was one “aid-station” at the start/finish area and you could run as many or as few loops as you wanted.

The premise of this style of race fits in with how I view running. I started the sport because it was cheap, fun and a way to connect with myself and others. I didn’t need to be rich to participate and I get out of it what I put in.

Michael’s races basically mark a set distance loop (this was 1 mile) and the course is open for a set amount of time. The winner is the person who completes the most loops however you can come and go as you please. The winners of Saturday’s race ran the whole 8 hours (!!!!) and completed over 40 miles each. I did my 15 loops and then hung out the rest of the day.

I enjoyed seeing people all over the course and feeling like you were running with, rather than against anyone. I do enjoy running with people and these races give me a chance to do that without having to be at anyone’s pace other than my own.

The only part I was a bit worried about was that I lapped people (who were running a lot longer than me) many, many times in my 15 miles. I never want to demoralize runners, so I asked Michael afterward about that concept in looped courses. He assured me that, coming from his perspective, most people are running their own race and like to pass and be passed by all other runners. They understand, as I do, that we are all training for different things and so our paces will all be different. That put my mind at ease, because if I were running a fatass with someone like Devon Yanko or Yiou Wang, I would be the one getting lapped and I would totally not care!

That’s the beauty of a race like this, no medals, no glory, just running and being together.

I look forward to the next one.

6 thoughts on “Fatass”

  1. That’s so kind of you Ellie to think about lapping people, but I totally agree that when you get out there, you have to remember that you’re running your own race. Whenever I feel bad about people lapping me (because I’m not exactly fast) I have to remember that I’m only competing against myself, and God gives me the strength to run as fast as He wants me to.

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