Thursday, July 15, 2010

VT100 Interview: Eric Ferland

Name: Eric Ferland
Age: 35
Hometown: Meredith, NH
Years Running Ultras: 4
100 Mile Finishes (& Names): none, yet.
Ultra Achievements: This year Pineland Farms, Peaks Ultra 54, and
unofficially Pemi Loop. Being a dad.

SJ: Eric, thanks for taking the time to talk to us about this weekends Vermont 100.
EF: I’m stoked, I can’t stop thinking about it.

SJ: You've run the Vermont 50 three times (Once the 50K, twice the 50M), is there something special about Vermont that draws you to the races there or is it simply locality?
EF: I love VT, at our house our primary sport is skiing. We spend a lot of time in the woods of VT hiking around and skiing in the winter and running in the summer. Also the Vermont Adaptive Ski and Sports program is a fantastic host and beneficiary of these VT races.

SJ: You ran the Mount Washington Road race this year in 1:33, a VERY good time for an uphill event; how did this factor into your training for Vermont?
EF: It doesn't its just something fun. I have tried off and on to get a spot in the Mount Washington Road via the lottery, and was never successful. So I read that you could bypass the lottery if you were to run every race in a New England Mountain Running series and that's what I did last summer. It seemed like every weekend running 3 -7 miles up some mountain. Anyway so I got in and finally got to run Mount Washington, where we also spend time skiing in the spring.

SJ: Given your past runs in Vermont and this years MWRR, what are the strengths you bring into the VT100 this year?
EF: I had more time for longer runs this season not racing every weekend. I also started power lifting in the off season so I think I am stronger overall. I have also been figuring out my nutrition trying to find out why I get tired and how to snap out of it using aid stations. I would like to think I’m a bit more informed this year.
SJ: You were pulled during last years Vermont 100, what happened that led to that decision by the medical staff? (if this isn't what happened.. tell me and I'll adjust the question to your answer)
EF: Well, I knew I was in a bad spot I had gone hours without peeing, I was throwing up everything I tried to put down, and I was cramping badly but still shuffling along. My pacer Chris Martin who by the way is awesome, had me convinced I was still doing great and could finish. I keep my problems to myself so I would not alarm my wife and 11 year old who were and still are my crew. At Margaritaville I told Chris my pacer what was going on still in his pacer role got me some tums and told me to keep trying to drink but it would still come back up. Finally I gave up. Chris now changed roles and moved to experienced ultra runner and asked if my back hurt I told him yes I was having bad cramps in my lower back for some hours now. Chris knew what was up and said we should go to Camp 10 Bear to get checked out. I was not there long before the Dr told me I was out of the race I told him that's fine I already dropped. He then told me to go to the nearest ER, from the ER I went to ICU for the night and was told I had rhabdomyolysis (Rabdo). So yeah that was fun.

SJ: So you're back in 2010 for another go at it... are you looking for redemption?
EF: I’m definitely looking for redemption I hate to fail and would have loved another go at it the very next weekend.

SJ: That being said, do you have any time goals for this years race?
EF: I want a buckle and I want to wear it everyday for at least a month. I’ll keep tyring until I get one.

SJ: In your mind, what is the best part about the Vermont 100?
EF: That I still have a buckle to earn, its still a mountain for me to conquer.

SJ: Say you met someone running the race for the first time, what advice would you give them heading into the race from your previous experience here?
EF: Don’t go out too fast its a long day, and to drink even if they don’t have to.

SJ: Eric, good luck to you this weekend at Vermont. We're all rooting for you to reach that finish line this year!
EF: Thanks man, have a great race and I hope to see you on the trail.