As promised at the end of last week’s post, we’ll take a look at a few individuals that are committed to being Dirtbags like few others…but first, some local team news!
The Arkansas Dirtbags held a monthly social beer run at Mt. Kessler in Fayetteville that consisted of a 5.5 miler and a few craft brews to cap off a great evening! Wait, shouldn’t all runs finish with a cold beer?
A couple of the Boise Dirtbags headed North to the Sawtooth Wilderness and ran from Stanley Lake to Grandjean. Eric Narad and Brady Vandegrift sure had some amazing scenery to enjoy!
Tattoos. They’re mostly permanent. You probably don’t want one unless it holds some kind of meaning. For the following Dirtbags, being a part of this community and what it represents definitely holds importance. Here are their stories, straight from them:
Julie Blanda: September 19th. I was stopped at the final aid station at Run Rabbit Run 50m missing the cut-off by 8 minutes. I was sad and disappointed, and to add insult to injury (literally), I came home to a broken relationship. What followed in those weeks was a lot of lost feelings. I had trained so hard for six months to come so close. The friends I had stayed with in Steamboat had all finished the 100 mile distance and I compared my defeat to their victories! I also suffered a pretty severe IT band injury that knocked me out of all running for about nine weeks. My home was full of melancholy and sadness and I was battling a lot of demons.
As it grew closer and closer to my return to running and the final ouster of the person in my life, I had a renewal of spirit. I knew a change was in the air, and I was slowly growing my confidence back and my independence. What better way to ease into that transition than with a tattoo! And not just any tattoo, but one that was very symbolic to my goals and dreams. I wasn’t just some runner now, I was an ultrarunner! I had put my heart and soul into my running! I had made amazing friendships and the people who came into my life were so inspiring and incredible! A lot of those folks were my fellow Dirtbag Runners Ambassadors. The best way I could think of commemorating my ups and downs, my defeats and celebrations, was to get the DBR mountains on my body!
As a Christmas gift to myself, I went over to Empire Tattoo to put the ink down. I included my favorite John Muir quote, as the mountains were most certainly calling my name! Shouting to me, really!!!
Frankie Escobar: I decided to get my Dirtbag runners themed tattoo because I wanted to celebrate the relationships that I have made since getting into Ultra running and becoming an Dirtbag Runner. I chose the Dirtbag Runner mountains to represent my family of Dirtbag Runners. I love the family concept of the group. The sun burst from the Dirtbag Runners singlet because it reminds me of the promise of a new day, much like the sunrise the second day of a 100 miler. Lastly I chose a character from one of the late Akabill’s amulets which I was told was hauoli nui loa (way too happy) to represent the act of running free and Born To Run Ultramarathons, which for me is like a family reunion and happens to be the place that I became an Ultra runner. It was also a way to pay my respects to the late Akabill. I have much love for Tyler and Crista and appreciate the hard work that they have put into Dirtbag Runners and making us such a tight group.
Clint Welch: I got my DBR mountains tattooed on me at the most fitting place possible, Born To Run Ultramarathons. Bob Gibson did a great job. I have a lot of tattoos but this simple one might be my favorite. DBR is definitely my tribe. No matter where I run or race if there’s a fellow Dirtbag there I’ve got someone to hang out with. As a matter of fact, when I ran the Mt. Ashland Hillclimb, Tyler Clemens saw my hat pre-race and literally had a beer in hand ready for me at the finish line party. Some of my best friends, best memories and most importantly, the Dirtbag mindset of “Run free, get dirty” is well worth a tattoo in my opinion.
Enjoy your weekend Dirtbags & be sure to check back next week!