Straight from the GUT

A Quarterly Publication of the
Georgia Ultrarunning and Trailrunning Society

What's new

Third Quarter 2013

Happy Trails...

Greeting from the President

Greetings GUTSies
So far this summer hasn’t provided much all-out heat training (sweat training maybe) for summer races and, Hot to Trot will be here before we know it!  So, get out there and sweat it up.


GUTS has hosted several great training runs recently, with groups enjoying the trails at Amicalola State Park, Fort Mountain State Park, and the Appalachian Trail, along with plenty of other running opportunities with GUTS members organizing runs all over north Georgia.  Keep up to date with the latest on the GUTS website forum and the GUTS Facebook page - like us on our Facebook page @

Next up is Hot to Trot, the first weekend in August, but the race is so hot that it closed out months ago!  Hopefully we’ll see you there as a participant or volunteer.  In August we have the very popular GUTS Training weekend and camping trip on August 24-25, at Fort Mountain State Park. Join us for one or both days of running and fun, and get prepared for MMM in the process. And on September 1st we have a new GUTS event, the Snakebite 50/50 at Sweetwater state park. It is a moderate course with long cutoffs, providing participants the chance to run a fast time or finish a new distance PR.


We continue to meet every Tuesday for a run at Kennesaw Mountain Park. Meet at 6:15 p.m. at the water fountain located next to the trail, behind the visitor center. We run approximately 6 miles, and have runners doing paces from fast to nice and slow. we try our best not to lose any newbies. The first Tuesday of each month the run goes “up and over” the mountain and is then followed by beer & pizza at the Marietta Pizza Company on Marietta Square.  It’s a great way to build up an appetite!

Happy Trails,
Janice Anderson


New GUTS Race:
Yeti Snakebite 50/50

GUTS newest event will take place on Sunday, September 1, 2013.  The inaugural 50 mile and 50KM races are designed to help runners achieve a new distance and allow veteran runners to run a speedy time or tune up for upcoming fall events. Both races utilize a variety of relatively easy trails, including weaving single-track and broad open fields, as well as narrow trails along the Chattahoochee River. With moderate hills and trails, the course is designed for fast times and for those looking to try their first trail ultra.  Both events will take place at Sweetwater Creek State Park, located in Lithia Springs. The Start and Finish lines are located at the Group Shelter. Both events will start at 7am. Race fees are $49: Click here to register on Ultrasignup.  Check the website for more information -


The 6th Annual Mystery Mountain Marathon & 12-Miler is Just Around the Corner!


Join GUTS for our annual trail marathon on the beautiful and challenging trails of Fort Mountain State Park, just 90 miles north of Atlanta. As always, we also offer a 12-mile distance if you prefer. And as always, the post-race party will be the highlight of the day, celebrating with friends, old and new. Registration has been open since early Spring, and we are filling up fast! Fees increase on September 1, so don't delay -- sign up now and don't miss out on this annual favorite.

Visit for more details and registration information. And be sure to "like" us on Facebook so you can see updates and join the conversation.

Questions? Comments? Or just bored and want to chat about the race? Email Kim at


Doesn't this look like fun?!


New GUTS Members: Volunteering at GUTS events is always a blast, and is a great way to meet fellow trail lovers and get more involved! But whether you are a new member, or a seasoned veteran, we'd love to see you at the race. If you can't run MMM this year, but still want to participate in the most awesome trail event this Fall, send an email and let us know how you can help (particularly if you want to drive the truck this year!):



Dust off your tents, MMM fans!

Yes, that's right, it's time for the annual GUTS Mystery Mountain Marathon & 12-Miler Training and Camping Weekend Festival!


When? August 24th and 25th


Where? Fort Mountain State Park, of course!


Details? On Saturday, August 24, at 2:00 p.m., we will meet at the beach and run the Gahuti Trail. This is essentially the 12-miler course, which the marathon also follows up to mile 11. That night we will camp at Primitive Group Campsite #3. "Primitive" means room for your tent, one open shelter, and one scary outhouse. . . . We will publish more details about Saturday night's dinner once we have a better idea of how many folks will be joining us. S'MMMores are guaranteed, as always.


On Sunday, August 25, we will meet at the beach at 8:00 a.m. to run the 301 trail.


You are welcome to join us for either or both days of running!


Snacks/beverages will be provided after both runs; light breakfast (bagels, bananas, etc.) on Sunday will be provided at the campsite for those who camp.


If you plan to attend, please RSVP to Kim at:

Be sure to indicate whether or not you will be camping, and whether you plan to run one or both days.

See you there!


2014 Red Top Rumble will be Feb 2

We've already been getting inquiries about when registration will open for the 11.5 mile Red Top Rumble. We are super excited to bring you the 7th annual event on February 2, 2014 at 8:30 am (10:15 for the kids run). If you've run or volunteered for this race, you understand why the race sold out in 30 minutes. It's a great course on some runnable trails with a very festive atmosphere.


Registration will open on Nov. 4 at 10 am. Check the GUTS website or the GUTS Facebook event page closer to the registration date for details.


Welcome New GUTS Members

Click here for a list of the newest GUTS members.


GUTS welcomes its newest honorary member!


Isabella "Izzy" Hyun O raced into the world on March 28, weighing in at 6 pounds 14 ounces. Since then, Izzy has been busy training her mom Tatyana Spencer and her dad Sean O in a brand new endurance sport called "parenting."


Welcome, Izzy, and hopefully we'll see you soon at the races . . . in the stroller division, of course.


ULTRA Recipe:

Vegetarian Low Fat Corn Chowder


By Beth McCurdy


Corn here, corn there, corn everywhere. I don't know about you but I'm feeling a bit corny these days. Well, it's corn season and I came up with this recipe after I received a VERY LARGE batch of corn on the cob and red potatoes from my awesome mother-in-law. Corn is a healthy carb and delicious so I knew I couldn't waste one little kernel.


Click here to read more.


Race Calendar

GUTS events

  • August 3, 2013 - Hot to Trot 8-Hour Run

  • October 13, 2013 - Mystery Mountain Marathon & 12 Miler

  • December 8, 2013- Pine Mountain 40 Mile Trail Run

Click here for more events.


GUTS Member Spotlights

Toni McAlister

Click here to learn more about Toni.

Jeff Bryan

Click here to learn more about Jeff.




“Don’t let a bear do it for you…..

Q: When crossing creeks do most trail runners barrel straight on through, attempt to jump or use stepping stones (if available) OR do you stop, remove the shoes, cross, then dry feet and replace socks/shoes on the other side?

A: I think most trail runners barrel through, it’s the fastest way; jumping or using stepping stones is a good option, but not always available. I would suggest never taking your shoes off to cross, as it can be slippery so best to have your shoes on your feet (wouldn’t you hate to see them wash downstream if you fell and dropped them?).  If you can’t stand the wetness, then replace the socks or even the shoes when you get a chance (again, not always possible).

Q:  Do I need to wear bigger shoes to allow for swelling of my feet during long runs and races?

A: Swelling of the feet (and hands) is something that often occurs during long runs.  It can happen due to various reasons, one of which is improper hydration.  Having an improper balance of electrolytes will cause inflammation and swelling of the extremities, so the key is to get to know your body as you train, so that you can determine the proper amount and frequency for ingesting electrolytes, given the situation (weather/distance/sweat rate/etc).  There will always be some inflammation in a long run, but there should not be so much that you need to buy shoes larger than your normal size. That being said, it is a good idea to have some sandals or slightly larger shoes for post-run to make it as comfortable as possible to walk around post-run.


Race Reports


Leadville Marathon

by Kim Pike


Rachel Langelotti


War at Windrock 50k
Jeremy McAlister


Bryce Canyon 100
Molly Freeman


For the love of running...


By Jason Green


My uncle has a hand that doesn't work very well. I was with him when it happened. I must have been about 9 years old, and we were on one of our many canoe trips down the river, when we spotted a calf stuck on the bank crying. My uncle immediately steered the canoe over to help rescue the calf. He was trying to pick up the calf when it happened.

Both my uncle and the calf were stuck in the mud. My uncle's hand had gotten wedged between the calf and a rock. Fear was in everyone's eyes. I couldn't make out what my uncle was saying over the cries from the calf, and I didn't want to get close for fear of winding up stuck in the mud. The calf finally got quiet and my uncle instructed me to run and get help. So off I went on foot, through corn fields and over bridges, until I reached a house. I told the farmer what was happening; he immediately drove us down to river on the tractor.

Once there, the farmer got a rope around the calf and pulled it to safety, then did the same for my uncle. My uncle's hand was purple and he didn't have any use of it at all. During the drive to the hospital, the car was making a loud noise; he couldn't shift gears. The roar of the engine made the glovebox fly open. Out popped several copies of Louis L'amour books. As I sat and waited on him at the hospital, I wondered how he would ever be able to read his beloved collection of paperbacks again, or drive a car that had gears, or hold hands at the movie, or throw up a double sign at a Slayer concert.

Just yesterday, I asked my uncle if he regretted trying to rescue that calf.

"No," he said, "because that was the day I watched you fall in love with running."

It turns out the farmer's house was just 75 yds from the river bank, but my uncle says that he watched me run out of the corn field twice and cross the swinging bridge once before getting on the tractor trail to the house.

True story.