IF you prepare the body and mind for performance (P) through training (T)

AND training is a cyclical process that includes breaking down / exercise (E) + building up / recovery (R)

THEN the one who exercises (E) and/or recovers (R) best will win (P)

IF P = T
AND T = E + R
THEN E + R = P

Competitive endurance sports is a Roller Derby-esque, Rhino Charge-like, Darwinian contest of survival. Everyone who wants to push themselves to their absolute maximum potential trains to the brink of their ability, and the one who get's as close as possible without twisting an ankle, pulling a meniscus, or suffering complete endocrine failure by race day will win. The ultra-endurance sport is an interesting one to participate in because the scientific research, let alone the experiential knowledge base, is still in it's infancy. Only now is a spotlight being shown on the physical and emotional toll that extended participation can take. Some of us, given the knowledge of what could happen, would take the risk anyway. Others might think twice and be thankful someone told them it was a bad idea before they got to mile 75 and still had a marathon to go. As many runners have been told be well-meaning friends, "Running 100 miles, that's like the dumbest idea ever." Ultimately realizing that training isn't just about pushing yourself as hard as possible, that it's also about recovering as completely and efficiently as possible, can be rewarding. It's a reminder that being your best doesn't just mean running the fastest race. It also means enjoying life and encouraging others. If we can take our goals and ambitions seriously but not take ourselves too seriously, we are bound to achieve more and pass through the gates of something greater than ourselves.