We asked them a few questions about themselves and why they chose to fund raise for Vermont Adaptive...
Meet Celia Leber
How long have you been running ultra marathons and how many have you done (attempted, completed – whatever you want to tell us!)?
My first trail marathon was around 1990 - I had run a lot of shorter trail races and some road marathons at that point and wanted to try a longer trail race. After that I ran a bunch of trail races in the 20-26 mile range in the early 90's, then ran my first 50 miler in 1999 (the Vermont 50). I finished that one just over the official time limit. I ran a bunch of trail ultras, from 50K to 100 miles, from 2000 to 2005, mostly in New England, with a few in CA and OR. Then I took a break for a few years to focus more on cycling, in part due to plantar fasciitis issues. According to UltraSignup I've done 36 ultras, but I think it's probably closer to 40-45 since a few didn't get on there.
Why did you make this year’s VT 100 your goal?
When I crossed the line last year, an old friend who was at the finish said "gee, I think 24 hours is within your grasp!" So although I had been thinking about trying a different 100 miler I decided to come back to Vermont and try for a buckle. And I love the race!
You’ve chosen to raise money for Vermont Adaptive as a charity runner. What drove you to make this commitment?
I have tremendous loyalty and affection for VASS. My husband and I have been taking part, either running or biking, in the Vermont 50 since shortly after we got married (I think we have done it something like 14 times?) Some of my happiest hours have been spent on the VT50 or VT100 course. Mike Silverman is great, the volunteers are great -- I feel like it's a big extended family. So, VASS is a great cause that does good work, but I think for me it's more a matter of wanting to pay back for all that the VASS events have meant to me over the years.
What is the one thing you are looking forward to at the aid stations?
Probably seeing my crew - my friends Beth and Doug took such good care of me last year. And I like having chicken soup at the aid stations at night. Oh, and Coke - ultras are really the only time I drink soda at all, but during the race I will swig down a lot of Coke and ginger ale.
What is your favorite memory/experience from an ultramarathon?
The first time I ran the VT50 with my best friend Penny, we were at the back of the pack at about 40 miles, when we passed a parked pick up truck with some hunters sitting in the truck bed. "Want a beer, ladies?" We looked at each other, pondering the question. "All those folks may be ahead of you, but if you have a beer now then at the finish you'll know you're one ahead of them!" We all laughed at that one, and Penny and I happily shared a bottle of Michelob as we continued on up the road.
More info about our Top Fundraisers please visit: http://vermont100endurancerun.blogspot.com/p/top-fundraisers.html
Here is a little bit about Vermont Adaptive
Vermont Adaptive Ski and Sports is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing recreational and competitive sports opportunities to people with disabilities. We believe sports and recreation provide a physical, mental and social experience that is immeasurable in promoting self-confidence and independence in an individual.
With nearly 400 active volunteers instructing and helping, plus generous partners and sponsors, and an amazing base of clients and friends, Vermont Adaptive Ski & Sports has been at the forefront of sports and recreation for those with disabilities in New England for more than 20 years. Vermont Adaptive Ski & Sports is committed to empowering individuals with disabilities. We promote independence and further equality through access and instruction to sports and recreational activities.
The VT 100 is one of Vermont Adaptive Ski and Sports biggest fund raisers every year. Without our participants, volunteers and sponsors, Vermont Adaptive would not be able to provide access to: skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, sailing, canoeing, kayaking, hand cycling, tandem biking, horse back riding, rock climbing, hiking, camping and other adventure weekends to their participants!
For more information about Vermont Adaptive Ski and Sports: www.vermontadaptive.org.
Here are just a few ways Vermont Adaptive puts a donation to work
- $25 provides a 2 hour snowshoe or Nordic outing in the winter or a 2 hour canoe or kayak outing in the summer.
- $40 allows Vermont Adaptive to purchase a box of hand warmers for volunteer instructors and participants.
- $60 covers the cost of a ½ day of skiing or snowboarding including equipment.
- $100 covers a whole day of skiing or snowboarding in the winter or a therapeutic horse back lesson in the summer. (These allow us to provide scholarships to people who otherwise could not participate.)
- $500 allows Vermont Adaptive to purchase new helmets for one program location.
- $600 buys a new tandem bike.
- $600 buys a new kayak or canoe
- $1,000 outfits six Vermont Adaptive instructors with uniforms.
- $3,000 provides the resource to purchase a new or piece of sit down equipment such as a mono-ski or hand cycle.