ESCONDIDO, Calif. (KGTV) — Escondido attorney Elliott Jung never had any interest in being a runner, that is until some friends bet him he couldn't run 20 miles.
"I said running can't be that difficult, and they said well, you just can't go out and run 20 miles. I said I bet if I tried, I could," Jung said.
So he took that challenge and went out and ran 20 miles, although he says he did hurt his foot.
"Zero running before I did that. I did absolutely no running before that," Jung said.
He went from having no real interest in running to suddenly falling in love with distance racing as he ran a few 50k events. But it didn't end there, as a friend suggested he try a different type of race.
"They said, 'hey Elliott, why don't you go try this 120 miler that is out in Colorado,'" Jung said.
A 120-mile race was about four times farther than he had ever run before. But for a guy who first started running because of a bet was certainly up for that challenge.
"So I dragged my friend into this 120-mile race, and we went to Colorado to try to get it done," he said.
This 120-mile race was an ultra-marathon called the Trans Colorado Run. It's 120 miles over six days. Runners would sleep in tents before getting up each morning, grab some breakfast, and then hit the trails running.
Jung says what made the ultra marathon so tough was running at altitude. The course had altitude ranges from 8,500 feet to 12,500 feet.
"Once we got to certain altitudes, it was a battle of the mind because you start feeling sick," he said.
Jung and his teammate powered through the altitude and six straight 20-mile days. It was tough on the body as well as the mind.
"You go through many different emotions, anger, regret, joy," he said. "It's just a funny feeling because you go through so many feelings throughout the race and at the end, you say that is my last one, but it's not."
Jung says he and his teammate got stronger as the race went along. After six days and 120 miles, they both crossed the finish line.
"Surprisingly, throughout the experience, it wasn't as painful or bad as I thought it would be," he said.
Jung hopes in the future to organize an ultra marathon in San Diego.