Athlete Roster - Marco Pontes

I am a “late life” runner. I started running at age 47 in 2013 by influence of my girlfriend (now wife) Alice, who talked me into it as a means to lose weight and do something new and healthy. I started like almost everybody else: training for a 5K road race. I ran my first 5K on November 1st, 2013 and never stopped running since then. After a few 5K races I upgraded to a 10K race (did a couple), then to a half marathon. My first half marathon was the San Diego Rock’n’Roll in May 2015, which I did with Alice’s return to long distance races after a 2-year hiatus. Yes, this was only 4 years ago! At that point I swore I would never, ever try running a full marathon in my life. 4 years later, I now have 8 full marathon finishes including New York City, Chicago and a Boston Qualifying time in Oregon, plus a total of 22 half marathons on road.

Now, let’s talk about trails! My trail running life is even more recent. My first trail race for a distance of 21K or above was the San Tan Scramble in January 2018 when I ran the 26K distance. That was only a year and a half ago! But it feels like a long time, as since then I finished 10 trail races at a distance of 21K or above. This includes a 40K at Lake Pleasant in April 2018 (Dam Good Run) and my first ultramarathon: the McDowell Mountain Frenzy, a 50K distance last December. I am now registered to double down and run the Javelina Jundred 100K race coming October 31. I am super excited about this challenge!

While I still consider myself a “hybrid” runner (road and trail) and have not yet fully departed from road running, I developed a special love for trail running in the past couple of years. I still think I should run a Boston Marathon just to check it off my list, but at age 53 I am not getting any younger and I feel like I need to enjoy the best that my healthy running life can offer. Living life to its fullest, one day at a time. This was one of the reasons why I chose to (almost) forget about every other race this year – road or trail – and focus on the Javelina Jundred. In the past two years I met a few great people on the trails and I look forward to meeting many more inspiring trail runners. Knowing the challenge that a 100 km ultramarathon will represent to me, I decided to seek guidance from more experienced ultramarathon runners. And then came The San Tan Trail Runners and Trevor.

While I always learned and took advice from more experienced runners (my wife included), I never really worked with a coach on a formal basis. This time, given the level of difficulty of the race I am training for and my recent effort in reassessing my running style and strategy – including nutrition and supplementation aspects – I decided it would be highly beneficial to have Trevor’s support preparing and managing my training plan. The fact that I will spend double digit hours on desert trails is in the core of my success strategy. My goal is to finish this important 100K race and finish healthy, and I am sure with Trevor’s guidance and my own determination this will be a successful endeavor. My first ultramarathon buckle is my big target!