Megan Kimmel continues rolling along with the second half of her season at The Rut 28k after recent wins at the Power of Four and Matterhorn Ultraks races. In the following interview, Megan talks about why she took a month-long break from racing in July, how much better Ultraks went for her this year, and how she’s looking to evolve her running in the future.
[Click here if you can’t see the video above.]
Megan Kimmel Pre-2016 The Rut 28k Interview Transcript
iRunFar: Bryon Powell of iRunFar here with Megan Kimmel before The Rut 28k. How are you?
Megan Kimmel: I’m doing good. How about you, Bryon?
iRunFar: Alright. You had a busy early part of your season as usual, but you had a nice little break in July, is that correct?
Kimmel: Yeah, I kind of designed my season to give me a break in the middle of the summer because I haven’t had a break in eight or nine years. I felt that’s what I needed for happiness more than anything else.
iRunFar: Did that work? Did you come out of that feeling a little refreshed?
Kimmel: I enjoyed July, that’s for sure. Time will tell if I feel ultimately refreshed or not. Yeah, I think your spirit has a lot to do with the outcome of racing in general, so I can only hope that it will pan out for the next half of the season.
iRunFar: Well, you certainly should be… your spirit should be soaring a bit. You’re two races into your second half of the season—Power of Four and Ultraks—with two wins, correct? Did you feel good in both of those?
Kimmel: Yeah, I did the Power of Four simply as a training run for Ultraks which was two weeks after. It had a very similar profile as far as elevation gain, so I threw myself into that one a couple days beforehand. Yeah, I felt really good for that race. That gave me the confidence boost that I actually really wanted for Ultraks. Ultraks is one race that I can seriously say I felt good the whole time for which is a rarity for me racing.
iRunFar: You’ve run Ultraks before, correct?
Kimmel: Yeah, I had a disastrous race there last year.
Kimmel: Hence the warm-up and Power of Four and making sure I was completely prepared to take Ultraks the best I could.
iRunFar: And had a great experience.
Kimmel: Yeah, I did.
iRunFar: Now you’re dropping down in distance a little bit doing the 28k.
Kimmel: Yeah, happy to just be doing a 28k tomorrow.
iRunFar: Which for many years, that sub-marathon distance has been a sweet spot for you. Are you still enjoying running those somewhat shorter Sky races?
Kimmel: Yeah. Yeah, I am, but I think it’s kind of coming to an end as I get older here. I am looking to get away from the shorter distances, I think, probably by 2017. I’ll still keep a few of them in there, but they really are more stressful on my mind. You have to keep the pace up. A lot of times they end up being tighter races, so once again, as I’m getting older, I just want to not have that intensity of the short races all of the time.
iRunFar: So maybe go out on the top of your game? Certainly you still are crushing it at the shorter races.
Kimmel: Yeah, it’s hard to leave when you’re still feeling good doing them. So like I said, I won’t just leave them behind. I hope to just race less and be a little bit more choosey with my races.
iRunFar: In general.
Kimmel: In general, yes, but hopefully still keep a 10k in there, certainly some of the half-marathon to marathon distances…
iRunFar: And then some ultras?
Kimmel: And then some more ultras, yeah. I’ll put a lot more of my energy into ultra distances.
iRunFar: You’ve been racing a lot for many years. Will you be doing any switching to maybe more adventuring in the future?
Kimmel: Exactly. Yeah, that’s a big reason I also want to stop doing so many short-distance races because I originally was a trail runner for the adventure aspect of it, and I miss that. It’s been almost 10 years since I feel like I had the energy and the freedom that I put on myself to go out and spend more energy on adventures rather than saving up for races.
iRunFar: You have a big race here this weekend. You’ve raced some of the folks you’ll be facing off against. I think you’ve raced Yngvild [Kaspersen] at Zegama, and she was obviously a challenge there. Have you raced Laura Orgué before?
Kimmel: Yeah, but this is, I think, the first race we’ve had this season together just due to our schedules and potentially an injury she was getting over early in the season. I’m looking forward to that.
iRunFar: Do you think those are probably your two biggest challenges tomorrow?
Kimmel: Yeah, probably. I should know… I should probably know who else is at the race, but…
iRunFar: You’re just going out there. Best of luck out there, and enjoy.
Kimmel: Thanks, Bryon.
iRunFar: Hopefully a fast and quick race.
Kimmel: Thank you.