It’s the 35th Anniversary of the Blueprint for Athletes Leadville Trail 100 Run! Over the next few months, we’ll be catching up with former LT100 Run winners to get the inside scoop on the race, tips on training and how winning the Leadville Trail 100 Run impacted their lives.
We’re kicking things off by chatting with Timothy Parr, 2009 Leadville Trail 100 Run Champion, Leadville local, and Leadville High School History Teacher.
What inspired you to run the Leadville Trail 100?
In August 1998 I was camping out near Mt Elbert and saw a Leadville 100 racer scampering and suffering right along the Colorado Trail. I was inspired then to run the race. I wondered how much I could push myself and if I could finish such a grueling race. I looked into entering the following year, however I was 17 and too young. For the next several years I focused on collegiate running and chasing team National Cross Country Championships. I finally got into Ultra Running around 2008. I had been focusing on road marathons after college but always preferred the trails. Duncan Callahan ,(2008 and 2010 Leadville 100 winner) my friend and training partner won the 100 in 2008. I knew I had to try my luck at the 100. So I entered.
What was the most memorable part of running the Leadville Trail 100?
Which one would it be? It was either walking along Pipeline with my pacer holding a shirt up to shield me from the sun while I contemplated dropping out or if I’d even be able to finish … or it was passing Duncan Callahan at mile 83 to take the lead. I had my umpteenth wind finally kink in and I felt fantastic. I ran down Sugarloaf steadily feeling stronger. I gave Duncan an encouraging word, took the lead, and knew at that point I was going to win.
Of course the final 30 yards over the red carpet and crossing the finish line might take the cake.
What is the best piece of advice you could give to someone who is thinking about running the Leadville Trail 100?
Make sure your heart is in it and that you are mentally prepared. Run the race because you want to.
How did winning the Leadville Trail 100 Run affect your life?
I’m proud of the accomplishment but I have to remember I can’t rest on my laurels. One reason why I won the Leadville 100 was because I continually push myself to excel. The Leadville 100 did reiterate that even in the darkest hour victory may be around the corner, salvation is still at hand.
What have you been up to since you won?
Still racing and enjoying life. I’ve moved from Gunnison to Leadville and teach History at the High School. I’m married with two daughters age 4 and 1. I’ve learned how to maximize my time further.