Unlike most of the races we've been involved with, Taji 100 is a month long challenge. The idea is to go 100 miles (or more) on foot in the month of February. Virginia was bent on getting 300 miles this month, and did it. I ended up going for 200, far more than I was expecting at the beginning of the month. Feeling stronger than I have for a long time because of all the walking. Also unlike most races, what makes the experience compelling is the online component. The leaderboard at Taji100.com gives you a sense of your place in the race that makes working out so much more than just a good reason to eat delicious food. The badges I earned (shown above) for exercising were just icing on the cake.


Late in the month we had walked every easy to visit trail too many times, and were going further and further looking for new scenery. Being easily amused, I was wowed by the way the cloud echoed the shape of the tree with the kite adding that spice of man made art. After walking outbound something like eight miles, it was a great excuse to stop and take a picture.

Finding this quiet valley where horses browsed under high power lines was one of our better exploring hikes. Too bad I got poison oak that developed in the next few days after going there.


Virginia got a big rush out of being at the top of the leaderboard every now and then. Meanwhile, I was just happy to be making progress. This particular day I finally got through the 100 miles walked in February mark.


A high point was the "Love hike", on the Sunday before St. Valentines Day. Virginia crossed 100 miles of walking in February. The "Hook'd on Fitness" crew showed her some love for that! A good time was had by all.


In the end Virginia went more than 300 miles. That meant she was the top woman on the leaderboard at the end of the month, ending up slightly above Carole Stanford, who had lead her for much of the month. The competitive spirit in this woman is truly awesome.

I had expected Coach Bertrand to be at the top. I asked him about it at the "more miles!" event at the end of February. He said "I'm running for health not miles." I gather he'd gotten sick or something like that and had to balance what he was doing and think about the big picture a bit. Talking about it with Virginia later, she explained that ending the month at the top of the leaderboard is so demanding that very few do it more than once. Life or injury typically keeps it from happening again.

For sure, 204.97 is more miles than I have ever gone on foot in February before. Even back in the days when I ran regularly my monthly average was probably under 120ish miles. There were 1,400 plus names on the leaderboard, so coming in 36th is not bad. Virginia wants me to go for 250 miles next year. I told her "We'll see..."