Philadelphian Perspectives is our new series in name, but a concept that has been authentic to us for the last 2 decades: highlighting the individuals who give the Philadelphia Running Community its flavor. A lot of us know our favorite Philly races, as well as bucket–list competitions for which we are willing to travel. We’ll cover all of those topics with Perspectives, hoping these accounts from your fellow runners are inspiring and relatable.
We recently caught up with Philadelphia Runner Erin Jaskiewicz for an insight, in her own words, into her experiences with this past year’s Worlds End Ultramarathon.
The last two miles were mostly downhill and VERY downhill. It is odd that I did not mention this before, but downhill running is a struggle for me. While everyone else was ripping it downhill, I was carefully stepping as my headlamp light bobbed up and down. I went as fast as I could and as we descended the trail, we could hear cheers of people crossing the finish line in the distance. More tears. At 11:37, I crossed that finish line with only 23 minutes to spare, after moving my body for 18 hours and 37 minutes. I cried a little more, collected my belt buckle and stood at the finish line with Heather, Travis, and Vinny in awe of the day that was now behind me.
THIRD TIMES A CHARM
I could have picked a different 100k to complete after failing two years in a row. There were times I wanted to but something in me would not allow it. If I were to complete a 100k, this would be my first. I could have went easier on myself but what would that have proven? Since my first ever run on the SRT, I have been challenging myself. This race pushed my body and mind to limits I did not think were possible and now that I am on the other side of it, I cannot help but dream about what is next.
As another friend reminds me often, we can do hard things. Whether it's running or life in general, sometimes the hard things defeat us but sometimes we defeat them and there is no better feeling. Success is not always linear. It is up to us to trust what our bodies can do and if we fail, we should try and try AND try again.
Ready to create your own adventure? Check out our new Trail Race: Kettle Cooker Five & Dime, sponsored by Altra. When you’re ready to suit up, pop into one of our 4 locations (Center City, University City, Manayunk, or Glen Mills).....continue your online visit and shop our constantly expanding selection of trail footwear, apparel, accessories, and gear.