Come Run with Me!

                                        Dont run and try to look at your GPS! 

                                        Dont run and try to look at your GPS! 

As I rolled on the frozen ground bloodied and yelling 4 letter words after tripping over...well I don't know what I tripped on... I thought to myself "WTH am I doing?!"  So what was I doing on the frozen tundra of Little Creek Mesa besides swearing and bleeding? I was training for my first ultra! 

It was almost one year ago when I was running with the brilliant race designer Matt Gunn (we were placing the rope for one of the big climbs on the Zion course, yes there is a rope!) and he said something like "Dude, you should run Zion next year." At the time I had worked for Ultra Adventures for two years doing social media, communications, marking trails, setting up tents, manning aid stations, etc. Basically, I have done just about everything from behind the scenes to on site but I had never run one of the races, never an ultra for that matter, nor a marathon, nor a half.  I think I did a 5k once! Remember when color runs were all the rave, I did that one!  But it wasn't until Matt G. challenged me to run a race had I every really thought about it. 

So here we are one year later. Zion is just over a month away and over the next 5 weeks between now and race day I will share weekly updates! I will share tips that I have read, lessons I have learned and hope to share a successful race with all of you.

Today I would like to share my first two tips for aspiring ultra runners. They are,  first if you are anything like me it took a challenge or an invite to think about running that first race and here is your invite! "Dude, you should run an ultra next year!"

The second, and maybe most important piece of wisdom from this rookie of running is SIGN UP!!! FIND A RACE, PULL THE TRIGGER and REGISTER (preferably a race hosted by Ultra Adventures). 

Follow my story on  the Ultra Adventures "Latest News" between now and Zion! 

Registration System Change

Many of you have noticed registration for the Grand Circle Trail series has been unavailable over the past few days. We're pleased to announce that registrations are back up, but through RunSignUp instead of UltraSignup. We apologize for any inconvenience or disappointment this move might cause. We did not expect or intend for this to happen, especially in the middle of the registration period. Let us explain:

Last week, we sent out a survey to our past runners asking for their feedback on the registration process for the Grand Circle Trail Series. As a company, we have considered switching registration platforms because it would make things easier for our customer service team and allow us to implement better refund/deferment policies, but not for at least another year, if at all. What is important to our runners is top priority to us, which is why we were looking for your feedback.

On the night of January 15 all of our events were removed from UltraSignup without notice to any of us. We have done all we can since then to try and get them back up and hosted on UltraSignup, but without success. Us asking for feedback from runners was met with some resistance from Ultrasignup. We have tried to identify what exactly it was that justified the hostile treatment but have so far been unable to do so. We know you are missing out on registration the longer our races are down, so we had to make the decision to switch over to the new system in RunSignUp.

So I can't register for these races now with my UltraSignup account? Unfortunately, no. We know this is a big inconvenience to many of you. The good news is, it only takes a minute to create a RunSignUp account which will then allow you to register for any of our races quickly and easily.

And I can't see my results on UltraSignup? No, however we are hoping that we can work more with UltraSignup to at least include our events within their results and listings. We hope this helps, even if we can't host our registrations there.

What if I already registered for one of the races through UltraSignup? Do I have to sign up again? No. You're still registered for the race. We just have to import all current runners' info into the new system. Once your information has been imported you will receive an email that you are registered for the event. Let us know if you don't receive an email in the next few days. 

If you have questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to contact us at info@grandcircletrails.com. Again, we apologize for any inconvenience this might cause you. We would not have chosen this move had it been within our control.

ULTRA ADVENTURES CHARITY BIBS!!

RAISE MONEY FOR A GREAT CAUSE!


We’re excited to announce our  Charity Bib Program.  By participating you not only receive a complimentary bib toward any Ultra Adventure Race but also raise money for several great causes.  Many of our events are sold out and more will be soon, but we’ve reserved 10  bibs per event for people looking to help fund-raise for the Navajo Nation and the National Parks. Please note that registering for a charity bib is a serious commitment.

To get one of the charity bibs you will need to raise $1000. 100% of the money raised will go to charities benefiting the Navajo Nation or our partner the National Park Foundation!

How it works: First, you’ll register for a charity bib (links to sign up are below). Once you have completed registration you are on the hook to raise at least the agreed upon donation. You have until the deadline listed on the page (1 week before the race) to get donations from businesses, friends and family. You’ll be provided a link to send anyone where they can donate and contribute to your fundraiser. If by the deadline, you are short you will have the option to pay the balance or forfeit your bib. So, for example, if you sign up for a 50-mile charity bib and you raise $900, you could pay the remaining $100. If you raise exactly or more than the goal, you will not be charged anything.

Once you have met your fundraising goal, you will be given a link for a free registration in Ultrasignup.  Registration for you will, of course, be free of charge.

Click the following links for more info about each event. 

Antelope Canyon

Monument Valley

Zion

Grand Canyon

Bryce Canyon

Tushars

 

We are excited about this opportunity to raise additional money for the Navajo and the National Park Foundation. We hope this charity bib option gives you the chance to run in this race!

Monument Valley Service Project

Our race calendar this year has been pretty spectacular. We’ve run in and explored some really beautiful places. And as another year comes to a close, we’re excited to have a meaningful way to give back. That’s why we want to tell you about our 2nd Annual Monument Valley Volunteer Project!

We have a very unique and amazing opportunity to do some service that will make an immediate difference in peoples lives. From December 9 through 11 we’ll be at Monument Valley helping with a wide variety of service projects. Bring your families and come join in on some great running (optional) and hard work in some beautiful country.

You will have the chance to see areas of the park normally off limits to visitors and meet families who have been living traditionally in the same area for centuries.

 

REGISTER FOR THE VOLUNTEER PROJECT

 

QUESTIONS & ANSWERS

When is the project? Do I have to stay all 3 days? The project will be December 9-11, 2016. You don’t have to stay all three days. The main working day will be Saturday the 10th. You can see a detailed schedule on the registration form.

 

What needs to be done? We will have 10-15 different projects happening. Mostly construction type work such as mending fences, building fences, replacing a wall, adding solar panels, digging a trench, adding composting toilets, tearing down a hogan, etc The scope of what we can accomplish will depend on the attendance. The more people that sign up the more we can get done, so bring your families and tell your friends! You can get more details about the projects in the registration form.

Is there a price to register for the project? We’re not charging anyone to come volunteer. That being said, we have asked a local family to prepare traditional Navajo meals for breakfast and dinner for the group and you will prepare and pack your own lunch before heading out each day. To cover this cost, we are charging $5 per meal, so $25 total. All of the money will go to the family. Additionally, when you sign up you can pay to stay in a hogan or book a camping spot (you’ll bring your own tent). Otherwise, you can book a hotel reservation on your own.