How to Set Goals in Your Ultramarathon Running Career

How to Set Goals in Your Ultramarathon Running Career

“Screw it, I’m just going to finish,” I said as I began my ascent out of the 30-mile aid station. It was over 90 degrees Fahrenheit and just below me was an inviting mountain stream. I chose to cool myself off before heading off on the rest of my adventure. As I lay there, letting the stream roll over my shoulders and into my lap, a couple of runners who weren’t in the race came up and stared. I soon got…

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Do You Really Need Strength Training for Ultrarunning?

Do You Really Need Strength Training for Ultrarunning?

The battle was won. I’d completed the longest, toughest, and hottest race of my life so far. And everything hurt. I was following Coach Koop’s training method at the time and expected my body to be ready to train again in three to five days. I was absolutely wrong. Dead wrong. Once most of the pain in my body subsided, I jumped on the trails. I was slow, but I was determined. And then my left leg flared up. The…

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Discipline is Freedom: How to Balance a Freelance Career and Ultrarunning

Discipline is Freedom: How to Balance a Freelance Career and Ultrarunning

It seems the digital world is hell-bent on destroying our productivity. As much as silicon valley execs sell their products as productivity enhancers, our digital devices are an unhealthy addiction. Thinking back to the era before the smartphone, I don’t know if life was better or worse. The device became mainstream as I left college. And I did not adopt the technology until four years later. But I can tell you that there is some merit in boredom. When you…

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What Happened: A DNF Might Save Your Life and Other Things I Learned at IMTUF 100

What Happened: A DNF Might Save Your Life and Other Things I Learned at IMTUF 100

For a morbid half-awake moment, I considered what it might be like to drown. Would it be peaceful or would it be an eternal panic before passing out? You see, I was clinging to a pink flamingo floatie in the middle of a hot springs pool at 4 AM while 160 of my comrades were still in the mountains fighting a battle. And all I wanted to do was fall asleep. But if I did, I’d likely slip into the water…

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How to Accomplish Impossible Tasks: One Step at a Time

How to Accomplish Impossible Tasks: One Step at a Time

A friend of mine once asked how to accomplish a seemingly impossible task. I replied, “Well, just like running a marathon, one step at a time.” She replied, “well, that’s big coming from you. You’ve actually run a marathon.” While her praise felt good, I still put on The Mask of False Humility and mildly deflected the praise. But in retrospect, I think she’s kind of right and it took a month of injury and forced indoor training for me to…

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5 Crazy Running Shoe Facts

5 Crazy Running Shoe Facts

Running shoes haven’t always been there for us. In fact, before running shoes, we either ran barefoot or in sandals. The Born to Run people claim we’ve gotten soft, but have we? The running shoe has changed the way we run. It keeps us protected in the mountains and keeps us from tearing our feet up on pavement. So today we’re going to celebrate running shoes by talking about five crazy things you probably didn’t know about running shoes. 1….

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Training Update #3: Tailwind Nutrition, Spring Energy, and Failure

Training Update #3: Tailwind Nutrition, Spring Energy, and Failure

You could say that to fail is human. We break. We bend. We get distracted by our desires or our pains. But failure isn’t exactly a bad thing. Killian Jornet says, “fail early, fail often.” And he’s right.  If we were perfect, there would be nothing left to achieve. Consider a child learning to walk. They stand up, wobble, and then fall. What did they learn? Falling isn’t so bad. So, they get back up and keep trying. Soon, they…

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Training Update #2: Trail Nutrition, Frustrating Blood Blisters, and Why I Suck at Swimming

Training Update #2: Trail Nutrition, Frustrating Blood Blisters, and Why I Suck at Swimming

It’s been one week since the Wenatchee Half Marathon and I’ve barely hit the trails. Why? The dreaded blood blister. You’re probably tired of hearing about this, so I’ll make it brief. Screw blood blisters. You’re not supposed to lance them. If you do, you might introduce bacteria directly into your bloodstream. And if they’re big enough, they sit there on your toe for ages throbbing and threatening to open if you run on them. I’m only 13 weeks out from…

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Five Things I’ve Learned About Elite Runners Through Strava

Five Things I’ve Learned About Elite Runners Through Strava

Paul the Apostle once said, “Run in such a way as to take the prize.” And while I’ve not always done this, I see value and worth in the attempt. Not everyone can achieve the prize. There are elite runners and there are average runners. And it’s ok to be average. Average people do wonder sometimes, “what does it take to be an elite runner?” Sometimes the answer is “you can’t be an elite runner.” But that’s only due to…

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Training Update: The Wenatchee Half Marathon, Achilles Issues, and Blood Blisters

Training Update: The Wenatchee Half Marathon, Achilles Issues, and Blood Blisters

It’s been a few months since I began this journey. I’ve since learned a ton about how to train for an ultramarathon, what it means to be an ultra runner and many other things. I’m certainly not the same person I was back then. My habits have changed and my mindset has changed. For one, I’m more aware of my nutrition. I lost about ten pounds in the first three months of training and realized pretty fast that I needed to…

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