Training: I trained for a long, paced effort. I spent many 6 or more hour days on the bike, often times at very high elevation. My base endurance was really good, I think. What I missed preparing for was being able to recover from the huge, abusive effort. I don't find Columbine abusive. It's just long. Powerline is abusive, especially after 80 miles of other big efforts. It's no secret to me that I hate doing interval training. But I think it was an error of wishful thinking to assume that I'd be fine doing Leadville with only endurance training.
Eating: A good endurance athelete has to have rules about conduct. This is what gets us through the difficult times when we are likely to get addled. It should have been absurd to me to think that it was OK to stop eating because "nothing sounded good". Just stuff it into your mouth. It isn't about cuisine, it's about survival.