From 9MindAsylum, “Lighting The Fire: Wrong Turns” tells the story of Jim Walmsley’s eventful start in the sport of ultrarunning.
Jim Walmsley was honourably discharged from the Air Force and had several bouts of severe depression. He turned to running to get his life back on track. He moved to Flagstaff, Arizona, and connected with a community of runners. They helped him rebound. Significantly, they also supported him after his infamous wrong turn at mile 93 of the 2016 Western States 100 race.
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Interestingly, Walmsley comments about how many ultrarunners are escaping mental health problems and addictions. This is something that I’ve also noticed in the many biographies and autobiographies of ultrarunners. I can’t help but feel that to be a successful ultrarunner then you need to be addicted to inflicting pain on yourself and have the mental strength to ensure difficulty.