AUGUSTA, ME-- Brendan Gilpatrick joined the Moose family in November of 2016 as the Staff Associate for Fitness and Athletics & Head Men’s and Women’s Cross Country Coach. He quickly became an asset to the program and his enthusiasm for the position has been a benefit to the students and staff around him.
An interesting fact about Gilpatrick is that he races Mountain Ultra Trail (in distances of up to and beyond 100 miles) and has been doing so for over 10 years now. This weekend, Brendan will head to Hawaii to take part in a 100 mile race through the Hawaiian jungle with 25,000 feet of climbing over the course of the race. For this race, there is roughly a 40% finish rate as the course is technical and littered with roots making the 36 hour finish requirement of the race seem even more daunting.
Gilpatrick has a history with the “HURT 100”. In 2010 he finished the 100-kilometer race in 6th place. In 2013 he returned to race the full 100-miler and imploded 60 miles into the race. Most recently, in 2015, he finally finished the 100-miler with a top 10 finish in just over 26 hours. On Saturday morning at 6AM he will be standing on the start line surrounded by others who have taken a chance and decided to follow a dream.
Training 10 to 15 hours a week on top of a full-time job as well as running a coaching business has been difficult, but he has found that the greatest personal development comes from going after something big and scary.
He has learned more about himself by waking up at 4 in the morning to drive to the mountains to run for 4 hours in subzero temperatures than he ever has finishing any race, and that is something he has tried to help his athletes discover. “One of the most important things a coach can do is to help an athlete take the skills and passion they have for their sport and channel it into every aspect of their life,” notes Coach Gilpatrick.
Ohana is the Hawaiian word for family and it is one of the most important facets of Hawaiian culture. “Family” is also the word on the back of the UMA men’s and women’s warmups where you would typically see someone’s last name. Gilpatrick noted: “starting a new job can be stressful but the community here at UMA has truly embraced and encouraged me to pursue my personal goals however grand and unusual they may be.”
Gilpatrick’s Moose family will certainly be cheering him on through this incredible journey. To follow live standings, please visit: https://ultrasignup.com/live/live.htm?dtid=21653.