If you’ve ever dreamed of quitting your life and disappearing into the woods to hike the Appalachian Trail, go read For The Win’s profile on Karl Meltzer, a hardcore “ultramarathoner” who just finished the run of a lifetime: The entire Appalachian Trail from Maine to Georgia in 46 days. This past Sunday he made it to Springer Mountain in Georgia, marking the fastest time has ever completed the trail. When you consider the AT’s rugged terrain and the various mountains he had to climb from Maine to Georgia, it’s staggering accomplishment.
Interestingly enough, the 48-year-old’s diet during the record-setting thru-hike wasn’t chicken and rice or some organic, REI-bought veggie meal pack: It was cheeseburgers and beer in an effort to get 8,000 – 10,000 calories in his system for the next day. via FTW:
The logistics of Meltzer’s run were staggering: Belz would drive close to 100 miles a day in order to track Meltzer on the trail, and was responsible for feeding Meltzer, mapping his course, and figuring out where he would stop every night.
Meltzer carried a waist pack filled with food (pieces of chicken, gel energy packs, honey buns) and two 18-oz. bottles of water with him. As soon as he got off the trail, he’d take off his shoes, clean the mud off his legs, and make sure he didn’t have any issues with blisters. He’d ice his shins while Belz fed him dinner, which consisted of anything from pizza, to steak, to salmon, to cheeseburgers and fries, accompanied by a beer. Most ultramarathoners are precious about what they put in their bodies, but Meltzer said he didn’t care what he ate. He just needed to get the necessary 8,000 to 10,000 calories in his system each day.
Meltzer would try to be asleep 30 minutes after he’d stopped running (which he said wasn’t hard) so that he could get up at 4 a.m. the next day and do it all again. Everything was mapped, timed, and calculated.
Poundin’ cheeseburgers and beer like a boss while running a hundred miles a day through some of the Eastern U.S.’s most difficult terrain. What a fucking Bro.