#FeatureFriday – Chuck Fritz

ChuckF

Meet Chuck Fritz, first-time #BoonevilleBackroadsBadass! We are excited to welcome Chuck to the backroads! He will be running the 100 miler!

1) How long have you been running?

I started running in 1982 during boot camp. We ran a mile as an assessment (and I thought “Damn! We ran a mile!”) And then I started running 3 miles frequently. That was at a pretty slow pace but I didn’t understand that then.

2) Do you remember the moment your first felt “like a runner”?

After I ran my first Boston. I hadn’t thought much about who is a real runner. Boston is a special race and city, but when people hear I’ve run Boston they sometimes say “oh, you’re a real runner!” And although they mean a serious or avid runner it always seems wrong to me. We are all runners equally but pace varies like personality and that is good for everyone, because the alternative would not be as interesting.

3) What is your favorite race distance? Why?

Marathon or 50k. They’re different, but they’re my favorites. Marathon is a fast/focused race, and if I run it right it’ll hurt the last couple miles. 50k because it’s much more relaxed with pauses at normally cool aid stations for cookies, etc. I take anything over 50k much more seriously, although 50k is never easy.

4) What first intrigued you about ultra running?

I signed up for my first ultra-distance run (Leadville 100) because I didn’t get into the bike race through the lottery. The run didn’t require a lottery. After signing up for Leadville, I ran a 50k as prep.

5) How many marathons and/or ultras have you run?

About 20 marathons and maybe 10 ultras. Plus or minus.

6) What has been your biggest running success to date?

I love all my children. I don’t have a favorite but finishing the Leadville 100 when I had no real experience at that distance stands out. I was fast then slow and by mile 40 felt absolutely terrible. I know my wife and crew thought I looked bad. Real bad. But they didn’t say that. I kept going. After I made it over Hope Pass (12,000′) I felt great but then had to make the other time cuts. I felt like that race could have ended many different ways, but I had great crew and I was motivated.

7) What keeps you motivated?

I sign up for a variety of races. Sometimes I race barefoot. Two years ago I started snowshoe racing and this year did my first xc ski marathon.

8) What is your favorite food to eat while training and/or racing?

During training I eat anything if it’s healthy, but only healthy food. During an ultra I’ll eat anything at all.

9) What is your favorite post race meal?

I crave Earl Gray Tea. I don’t drink beer. I was in Boston in 2013 and was in a nearby Starbucks when the bombs went off, getting my post race tea.

10) What is one piece of advice you would share with other runners?

Never bet against yourself. Ever. Never bet against yourself.

11) When you aren’t running, how do you enjoy spending your time?

I love to ride. I ride casually, commute on bike once in a while, race some and even have a unicycle I’m still learning to ride. My wife and daughters don’t run so we often ride together.

12) Anything else you would like to share?

Shoes are optional, and Lisa Vetterlein still owes me a trail run.

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