The Cape Cod Trail Race is thankful for the strong support of the Cape Cod Ultrarunning Society.
The Cape Cod Ultrarunning Society was formed a dozen or so years ago for local runners who were enamored of the idea of running great long distances. An ultrarunning race is defined by any distance beyond the marathon (26.2 miles). While we are a competitive sport, the emphasis is as much about the completion of said distances as time-specific races. Thus, we have many folks who do not fit into the typical greyhound-lean runner’s body, but have the imagination, perseverance, and character to simply “stay the course” no matter what it takes. With this in mind, we have found our sport attracts a bunch of people with great character and what I call “the endurance factor.” Often as loveable and romantic as modern day Don Quixotes, it does not have to make particular sense to the real world out there, who fail to understand the practicality.
Our answer: there is none.
We have had irregular club meetings at my house, where we typically go around the room twice: the first to talk for three minutes or so to describe our last adventure, then once around again to discuss our next planned outing. In this way, there is no pecking order. All are encouraged to feel included; old/young, fast/slow, rookie or veteran, we share the road. And we try not to make the sport financially impossible for participants, so that many of our greatest runs might be informal training efforts done without entrance fees or sponsorships.
For the past 20 years I have taught beginner-level running classes year round. Currently, Tuesday and Thursday nights at 5:30 pm at the Osterville Historical Society. They are for everyone, but I admit it – I am always on the lookout for that special person who hears the romantic siren song calling from the road. They might be an ultrarunner.