Kyle Robidoux is like many people we know. He’s in the taper week of his first 100 miler, he had a ho-hum 50 miler a few weeks ago, but he’s confident in his crew, pacers, and mental strength and he’s ready to get through the whole race.
The difference is that Kyle will be competing in the inaugural AWD division–that’s the Athletes with Disabilities–division, because Kyle is legally blind. He described his vision as “seeing out of a toilet paper roll” and is unable to see trail textures or obstacles, making him dependent on trail guides for his training and racing.
In this interview we discuss:
- How does he find a trail guide, and what is their exact role and responsibility? Are they like pacers?
- How has he trained for a rolling 100 miler while living in the middle of Boston?
- Perspective. Sometimes races don’t go as planned but we still find positive outcomes. What has he learned recently?
- How the AWD was conceived and expectations of growth. I bring up some concerns.
- The beer scene in NE and Boston and where it might be in 5 years.
- What sighted runners can do to help blind runners spend time on the trail.
Kyle Robidoux Episode Sponsor: The Butte Meadows Trail-A-Thon
Looking for a fun Northern CA trail run that you can finish in less than a day? Be sure to check out the Butte Meadows Trail-a-Thon. Race is on Saturday, Oct 14 in the Lassen National Forest north of Chico, CA. (And yes, it’s well clear of fire danger!)
Half marathon, full marathon, and relay divisions, the races are fully staffed with great volunteers, organized by seasoned pros, and climb to a 6k’ lookout station with incredible views of Northern California. Find out more here and use URPBMT in the discount box for a special price on Ultrasignup.
Kyle Robidoux Episode Notes
Here’s Kyle’s organization United in Stride. I’m signed up as a volunteer, you should too!
Here’s the Vermont 100 Athletes with Disabilities page.
Here’s our interview with Richard Hunter from four years ago.
Here’s Kyle blog: BlindBeerRunner
Here are the TOPO shoes we were talking about.
Here’s our interview with Kyle’s friend and VT100 RD Amy Rusiecki.