The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast Episode 4-350 – Marathon Training Strategies with CoachPRS

 (Audio: link) [audio:]
Link epi4350.mp3

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -

Hello my friends from Portland Oregon where I just ran the marathon.  Portland – home of the weird.  Welcome my friends and family to episode 4-350 of the RunRunLive podcast.  Another week another adventure, eh?

This week’s adventure was flying to Portland to run the marathon.  It was weird and wonderful and I did well – but you can hear all about it in the race report in this episode.  I also sit down with Coach and we talk about some marathon strategies on the futon in his running store in Woodstock Oregon – Pace Setter Athletics.

That’s probably enough for one episode. 

Thank you all for showing up every other week and listening to my stories.  I appreciate it.  I truly live a charmed life. 

I ran into a couple folks this week who were podcast listeners and it’s super weird for them to hear my voice and see it coming out of me.  I’m sure it’s terribly disturbing and potentially disappointing but I love getting out and having adventures and meeting people.  I’m like Kwai Chang from Kung Fu.  Wandering the earth, speaking cryptic philosophy and kicking ass.  “When you can snatch the pebble from my hand…grasshopper”  (Google it kids.)

I’ll keep my comments brief because I’m juggling travel and work this week.

If you want the inside scoop on my adventures you can always become a member.  It’s basically a subscription option to fund the podcast and in exchange I produce member only audio.  Mostly I’ve been doing book reviews of the various books I read but you never know what’s going to pop out of my fertile and active mind and into a member’s episode!

Look on the RunRunLive Website for the member links. 

The RunRunLive podcast is Ad Free and listener supported.  We do this by offering a membership option where members get Access to Exclusive Members Only audio

Last week I uploaded two, count ‘em, two, book reviews.  One for the Neal Stephenson SevenEves scifi tome and another for Moonwalking with Einstein, a treatise on memory techniques.

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I spent the week in Woodstock Oregon.  You have to remember I’m from Boston.  .  I grew up in the 70’s Irish Catholic.  The Portland area is in some ways way outside my comfort zone but in other ways strangely familiar. 

It’s like being dropped into a friendly pot growing commune in 1972.  Everybody is super politically correct and friendly but at the same time super alternative life style. 

This is a place where you have to be careful not to walk too close to the road when walking down the sidewalk because cars will crash themselves stopping to let you cross.  In Boston driving is a contact sport and pedestrians are the prize.  In Portland it’s like some sort of baroque dance routine.

There is a coffee shop on every corner.  But not a Starbucks.  The villagers picket Starbucks and drive them out of town as the evil corrupting corporation.  Every store sells craft beer.  The hardware store sells craft beer. The tanning salon sells craft beer.  If they’re not selling craft beer they are selling pot. 

Everyone wears a ski hat.  Everyone has purple hair, and piercings and tattoos and man-buns and Mohawks.  But they are all super nice and homey.  Every restaurant is a vegan restaurant.  There are homeless people everywhere, but it’s hard to tell the homeless from the hipsters.  There’s an actual game in Portland called ‘Homeless or hipster?’ where you try to guess. 

Everything is made by orphaned panda cubs using baby koala tears.  It rains almost every day. 

As I sit here writing this, on the roof of a natural foods market – that sells craft beer and vegan appetizers – they have Kombucha on tap - there is a woman(?) with a goatee who has been discussing the nuances of an upcoming wiccan ceremony for 40 minutes like she’s talking about what kind of brownies to bring to the PTA meeting. 

I love it here.  You can be as weird as you want and everyone is friendly. 

And that’s what I love about America. 

And that’s why I go on adventures.

On with the show.  

Section one –

No Section one.

Voices of reason – the conversation

Coach Jeff Kline PRSFit


At PRS FIT we provide training, motivation and camaraderie. When you become a part of our Team you quickly see we love what we do. (You also receive our first time finishers guarantee) We do it better because we care about you. The Team cares about you. We don’t go off the grid. When you need an answer we’re there to help you find it!


Prs Fit is a community of athletes from all over the world. We are a team. Alone or together, from beginner 5k to Boston Marathon and 100 Miler, sprint triathlon to Kona, we strive and we conquer. Prs Fit lets you experience what we call Team and social fitness – connecting and motivating each through our one of a kind global team experience. No matter the weather, the circumstance, day after day, we provide a high quality training experience that produces results.

Be Healthy. Train Smart. Have Fun.

Section two

Portland Marathon -


Well my friends you have pushed your hips forward through the end of episode 4-350 of the RunRunLive Podcast. 

That was fun right?  I’m definitely on a high cycle right now.  I find myself at the end of my to-do list with no races on the calendar.  Well, of course I always have races on the calendar.  But, I’m going to heed Coach’s advice and lose a little fitness now.  I decided not to double down.  See?  I’m coachable.

I have my yearly water stop volunteer duty at the Bay State Marathon coupled with the Groton Town Forest Trail race next weekend.  At some point in November I have a turkey trot.  Then in December is the Mill cities relay.  Of course on New Year’s Eve day we have the newly official Groton Marathon.  And on New Year ’s Day the Hangover Classic.  That should keep me busy. 

How about you all?  What are you racing and training for?  What’s your next adventure?  What are you going to do?  You’re not getting any younger.  Now is as good a time as ever.

Find something the scares you as much as it inspires you and turn that weird thing into an adventure.

And I’ll see you out there.

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -


Direct download: epi4350.mp3
Category:Running -- posted at: 8:08pm EDT

The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast Episode 4-349 – Chrissy Runs a BQ

 (Audio: link) [audio:]
Link epi4349.mp3

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -

Hello my friends and welcome to episode 4-349 of the RunRunLive Podcast. 

Today we chat with Chrissy Simmons who made the grave mistake of tell me on facebook that she ran a qualifying marathon using my MarathonBQ training plan.  Of course I coerced her into an interview.  The audio quality is a bit off because we were using the telephone to record.  Most of the time I can use a skype plugin to record digital audio but we couldn’t swing it this time.  Think of it as quaint trip down technology memory lane when we used to pick up the phone and call each other over twisted pair, copper wire, plain old telephones. 

I like to talk to folks who have used the plan successfully because when I was writing it down I never really knew if it would work for other people or if it was just some strange manifestation of my own personal demons.  I thoroughly tickles me to hear it working and to hear people learning the things I learned by going through it. 

When you boil it down it’s really about speed.  I’ve heard a couple interviews of Shalane and the other marathoners since the Olympics.  They train up to 100 – 120 miles a week.  Most of it varying forms of long tempo which is very specific to the marathon distance.  In essence their training is specific practice for the race they are looking to run.  They are training to find and stay on that edge of the pace where they maximize their results without crashing. 

They don’t do a lot of speed work.  Why?  Because they are already fast.  They are coming up from the track or the shorter distances.  They already know how to run fast. 

The amateur mid-packer marathoner is different.  We may have never run track in school.  We don’t know how to run fast. Even those of us who may have run 20-30 marathons.  We know how to run, we just need to get faster if we want to qualify for Boston or any other race. 

The key light bulb idea for you is this.  Everyone is capable of running fast.  They just have never practiced running fast. They don’t know how.  That’s the main question I addressed in MarathonBQ; “How do I take 20 – 40 minutes off my marathon finishing time?”  The answer logically is to run faster.  But how?  The answer is to practice, rigorously running faster.  Simple. 

Not all simple ideas are powerful, but most powerful ideas are simple. 

In section one I’ll chat a bit about how to experiment with speed.  Not just for the marathon, but in general as a component of your tool kit.

In section two I’m going to talk a bit about your personal finances.  Why?  Because I just went through a long avoided financial planning process and I think I’ve got it figured out and thought I’d do you the service of telling you what I learned. 

So how’s my training going?  As it turns out, fairly well.  The big part of it is that I’ve stayed on the nutrition plan that I began as a 30-day project in August.  I dipped under 170 pounds last week which is as light as I’ve been since the 1980’s and that really has had a positive effect on my training. 

It has a dual impact.  The healthy, lean diet has my body reacting better to workouts and the weight loss has put a pop back into my pace.  The net result is I’m able to train at a pace that is a lot more familiar and comfortable to me and I’m guessing that I’ll benefit from that. 

I raced the Spartan Beast last weekend and you should get a nice long race report on the podcast feed if everything works out.  I followed up with a nice 3-hour, 21ish mile long run the weekend after.  I still don’t have a lot of volume but I’m going to continue on this nutrition plan through the Portland Oregon marathon in October and see what happens. 

The RunRunLive podcast is Ad Free and listener supported.  We do this by offering a membership option where members get Access to Exclusive Members Only audio

Last week I uploaded two, count ‘em, two, book reviews.  One for the Neal Stephenson SevenEves scifi tome and another for Moonwalking with Einstein, a treatise on memory techniques.

    • Member only race reports, essays and other bits just for you!
  • Exclusive Access to Individual Audio Segments from all Shows
    • Intro’s, Outro’s, Section One running tips, Section Two life hacks and Featured Interviews – all available as stand-alone MP3’s you can download and listen to at any time.

For the cost of a pack of Clean and Clear oil absorbing facial wipes, to, you know, remove that extra shine off your brow, you can be a member of the runrunlive support crew.  There is no shipping charge for membership and I just today fixed the bug in the annual membership signup process!

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I have a course at home that I do most of my workouts on.  It runs down some back roads that are fairly light in traffic.  It’s rolling hills through neighborhoods.  One of the modest 1950’s ranch houses I run by has had a sign for one of the current political candidates out in his front wall. 

I say ‘his’ because I’ve seen him.  He’s a white guy, about my age.  The yard and the house are well kept but not overly fastidious.  He drives an older model red Volvo sedan.  He and his wife live there on that classic suburban ¼ acre lot.  Doesn’t look like there are any kids. 

He’s had his sign up since the primaries. 

I shake my head when I run by.  I wonder what has happened to him to make him so angry.  I wonder what his narrative is. 

I’ve often thought of starting one of my speeches by talking about all the challenges I’ve had to overcome in my life. 

I say it with great seriously and gravitas.  How hard it was to grow up white and male in the suburbs of the richest state on the richest country in the world.  I’d spin my miserable yarn about how I had to cope with being healthy and well fed, being provided the best education by loving parents who were in a stable long term marriage. 

I wonder how long the audience would stay with me? 

These are confusing times for many.  If you can look beyond that confusion.  If you can look within.  You will find abundance. 

And I just wish more people would see that abundance.

Do you believe in abundance?

On with the show.  

Section one –

Getting Faster -.

Voices of reason – the conversation

Chrissy Simmons

I am a 34 year old living and working in Winchester, KY. I enjoy hiking and various outdoor activities, playing with my two dogs, and of course having drinks with good friends.  But my primary hobby is definitely running.


Over the years, I have established my top 3 running goals: 

1.) Run a marathon in all 50 states (16 down!)

2.) Finish a 100-mile race (50-mile race completed.  100K scheduled for 12/31/16)

3.)  Qualify for the Boston Marathon (Done!).


I started running when I was 25 years old.  With help from the well-known Couch to 5K training plan, I ran my first 5K.  3 years later in 2010, I ran my first marathon at the Cincinnati Flying Pig (4:38).  Since then, I have run about 25 races that were marathon length or longer.  Some of those were ultra-marathons, some trail marathons, some races I did just for fun, and some I did to check new states off the list.  I would say that I honestly put effort into training for about 6-7, making gradual improvements to my finishing times by loosely following hybrids of various available training plans.   Qualifying for Boston was a dream I had from the beginning and after finally breaking the 4:00 mark in 2014, the goal felt like it was in reach.


On 6/6/16, I started the MarathonBQ training plan with a goal to run a 3:35 marathon (BQ -5). And on 9/11/16, I finished the Erie Marathon with an official time of 3:34:36.  Training with this plan during a hot, miserable summer was brutal at times but the final result was definitely worth it.

Section two

Financial Independence -


How about that?  You, my abundant friends have sped your way to the end of Episode 4-349 of the RunRunLive podcast.

Do you feel faster?  I do. 

Next up for me is the Portland Or marathon in two weeks.  I don’t know what to expect, but I’m hopeful.  Travel marathons are always a bit of a wild card for me, but we’ll see how it goes.  Depending on how things go in Oregon I may look for a November race.  Other than that there is the tradition of volunteering at the BayState Marathon in October and either volunteering or running the Groton Town Forest 10 miler and then of course the traditional Ayer Fire Department 5K on Thanksgiving morning.

One new development is that I’m setting up a website for the Groton Marathon.  I’ll read you the copy. 

“The Groton Marathon was founded in December of 2013 by veteran runner Chris Russell.  He was in the midst of a ‘marathon a month’ streak in honor of the Boston Marathon bombings from April 2013 to April 2014.  The marathon he was scheduled to run in December was canceled due to snow.  Frustrated at the lack of convenient distance events in the Massachusetts area, Chris grabbed a couple running buddies and created the first Groton Marathon to keep his streak alive.

The Run has repeated each year since.  This year, 2016, we want to open up the race to a select number of applicants who are facing the same shortage of local distance events to keep their streaks alive.  If a small, lightly managed run with veteran runners in December sounds like a fit for you, join us this year.”

That’s what I’m up to.  It’s an abundant life. I don’t have to stop and ask permission if I can create my own race.  I just have to do it.  The way I’m able to continue to run and have adventures is simply that I believe I can, and I do it. 

Frankly the biggest challenges we face in this era and in this season of our lives is that there is too much abundance.  The challenge is how to focus your energy on the handful of things that bring value to you and your family and your community. 

The Millennials talk about FOMO – ‘fear of missing out’.  That’s a classic example of how abundance makes us crazy.  There are too many good choices and we either freeze in place overwhelmed or flit from thing to thing like deranged dilettantes. 

And then I’m out for a walk with Buddy in my woods.  With the dry sun filtering through the green tree canopy and falling mottled in the leaf litter.  The old stone walls delineating sheep pastures that long ago gave way to forest.  We stop to breath in that good air.  We listen to the skittering of squirrels and the chittering of birds…

And we know abundance.

Think about the abundance in your life. 

And I’ll see you out there.

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -


Direct download: epi4349.mp3
Category:Running -- posted at: 4:01pm EDT

Spartan up!

A first timer takes on the Beast. 

(Audio: link) [audio:]
Link SpartanUp.mp3

The funniest line of the day was when I was flying down an open field descent passing people in big clumps.  I yelled “Come on people you’re being passed by a 54 year old guy!”

A lady looks at me sideways and responds “Yeah, but not a normal one.”

I took that as a compliment. 

The great herds of hikers I passed were mostly pretty cranky about it.  I don’t get it.  If you’re out there you might as well enjoy yourself.  I suppose if you’re at the end of your rope and some hairy, half-naked old guy flies by yelling “Weeeeeee!” it might piss you off. 

It wasn’t easy, but it wasn’t the hardest thing I’ve ever done.  I was a bit out of my element but I raced the Spartan Beast as best I could and did relatively well.  I met my primary goal of not dying and my secondary goal of not injuring myself.  I did get nicked up and was a bit sore.  It will be a couple weeks before all the bruises, scrapes and scratches heal.  But nothing broken or sprained. 

I ran this event as a bit of a lark because they reached out to me and offered an entry.  My daughter Teresa wanted to come along and do the sprint so I signed her up too and I was glad for the company.  We made the drive up to Killington, VT Saturday morning.  I raced on Saturday and she raced Sunday morning so it was another nice endurance adventure weekend for us. 

Having been offered a complimentary entry I figured I’d get my money’s worth and run one of the events with a higher difficulty level.  When you look at the advertised events it starts with the Sprint, moves up to the Super and then up to the Beast.  The Sprint is advertised as 5k distance, the Super is a 10K and the Beast is around a ½ marathon.  There’s a special shirt / 3-part medal if you do all three. 

There are also longer events like running the ‘Ultra-Beast’ which is the Beast twice and the Agoge which is a special multi-day event.

Not knowing much about Spartan races I signed up for the Beast event which is listed as 13 miles and 30 obstacles.  I mean, it’s only a ½ marathon, right?  How long could it take? How hard could it be? 

I have my best adventures when I don’t pay attention too much. 

I’m in decent shape this summer and could jog any given ½ marathon in under 2 hours so I figured I’d do this in under 4 hours, right? 

Two weekends previously I ran the very difficult Wapack Trail race which was 18 miles of technical single track over 4 mountains, twice in just about 4 hours.  At the end of July I ran a hot trail marathon in around 5 hours and that’s twice as far as this Beast, right?  You see my logic here. 

I looked at the Spartan training plans and they were, frankly, terrifying with hundreds of burpees, squats and pullups.  It was like something out of a gladiator movie.  Or that old “Monty Python sketch about Ken the Boxer” I watched a few videos of races and it looked reasonably engaging but some of the athletes were clearly not in the best of shape. 

I asked Coach to give me some Spartan specific training but, honestly, he thought it was stupid idea.  He basically gave me the same training he always does, maybe with a bit more yoga and core work.  I can honestly say I think I did more burpees on the course then I had done in all my training. 

To summarize, I went into this Spartan Beast race having no idea what I was getting into and without training for it.  Guess what?  I did really well. 

That’s right.  I excelled.  I came in 10th in my age group out of 106 old guys. I was 220th out of 2296 males and I was 252 out of 3,213 overall.  And I think that’s just the finishers.  They pulled a large number of people off the course due to injury and time limits. 

How is this possible?  How did my tired, old marathoner butt out perform all these millennial cross-fitters? 

It’s simple.  I actually trained for the race.  They didn’t. 

It turned out the obstacles were 1% of the course.  99% of it was technical, mountain, trail running.  Well it was technical, mountain, trail running for me.  It was a miserable death march for all those well-chiseled, millennial cross-fitters who spent their training flipping tires and doing hundreds of pullups.

I can honestly say, with a large dose of irony, that I was probably the only one who trained well and course specifically in the whole crowd.  I was able to fake the obstacles and play to my strengths.  I just rolled off Wapack and the Indy Trail marathon.  I WAS trained for this race. 

I think another advantage I had was a certain familiarity with long races and suffering.  I can go pretty deep into the suffer locker when I need to and still compete.  I got the impression that these folks weren’t as familiar with the sweet suffering of a multi-hour endurance event. 

Don’t get me wrong.  If I had to compete in the global tire-flipping, box-jumping games I wouldn’t last 60 seconds.  I just happened to luck into a course that was basically a long mountain race. 

Still, it took me 6 ½ hours to get through the course.  Mostly because of the 3-4 near vertical ascents of the mountain we did.  It was slow going.  Especially in the last couple hours when I was out of fuel. 

What I discovered, (as I was getting ready in the parking lot), was that the average open participant takes 7-9 hours.  Really?  I had no intention of staying out there that long.  I told Teresa 4-6 hours max.  I mean it’s only 13 miles. 

The organizers told all of the waves starting after noon to carry headlamps and glow sticks but I thought that was just more ridiculous Spartan hyperbole.  It turns out it wasn’t.  When I was leaving the venue that night you could see the long line of headlamps trooping along the slopes on the mountain. 

Those technical descents would be really difficult in the dark.  Glad I wasn’t out there.  There was some controversy because they let people start the Beast up until 2:00 PM, knowing the average cross fitter takes 7-9 hours.  Then they pulled them all off the course at 9:00.  Those people were a bit miffed at having paid a couple hundred bucks and traveled to Vermont only to get forcibly DNF’ed. 

This was the ‘Open’ division.  There is also a ‘Competitive’ and an ‘Elite’ division.  I toyed with entering as competitive, but then I got over myself and went with open.  The advantage of the competitive division is less traffic on the course and people generally know what they’re doing.  The advantage to the open division is that they are far less strict about how you approach the obstacles.  The volunteers really didn’t care if we did obstacles correctly or did all the penalty burpees for not completing the obstacles.  I think I could have run around the obstacles and no one would have stopped me. 

It was a nice, warm sunny day when Teresa and I rolled into the venue.  We had to pay $10 for parking (on both days).  There were shuttle buses to the starting area. 

I got kitted up before we went on the bus.  Looking at the weather I decided to go shirtless.  I had the same Hoka road shoes that I used in my other trail races. I had my water back pack – I had considered trying to ‘live off the land’ but there didn’t look to be much support on the course and I didn’t want to run out of water.  I had three old Gu’s that I threw in the pack for fuel. 

I didn’t want to carry a bunch of stuff because of the obstacles.  Any extra stuff would have to be dragged through the course.  Instead of a hat I made a hippy-helmet out of an old bandana with a chilli pepper motif.  I didn’t wear a watch or sunglasses.  I put my wedding ring in a zippered pocket in my pack – I have lost a little weight and it’s not so tight anymore and I didn’t want it coming off in an obstacle. . 

They made you wear a headband with your number on it and a timing chip on your wrist.  I put on a pair of Zensah calf sleeves as well. Everyone I saw had either calf sleeves or tall calf socks.  I figured they knew something.  I threw a pair of running gloves in the pack in case my hands needed protection.  I went with my tried and true Brooks baggie shorts with the liner and the man-thong tech undies. I greased up the pointy bits.  That was it.  We were off. 

Teresa helpfully painted a large Spartan logo on my belly, because, hey, when in Rome.  I joined the queue-up for the 12:15 open Beast wave. There looked to be around 100 or so competitors in my wave.  The first thing they do is make your climb over a 4 foot wall to get into the corral. That’s a nice touch. Then an announcer whips the crowd into a frenzy. 

I was chatting with some folks who came in from Ohio, a husband and wife and their friend.  I related how it was my first Spartan race and I hadn’t trained much but was a runner.  They said “You’ll be fine, just don’t go out too fast.” But their eye’s seemed to say “you have no idea how much trouble you’re in.”

With much hoopla were sent en masse on our way.  The first obstacles were 4 foot high beams that you had to vault.  I stopped to help a woman who could get over them.  In retrospect, she probably didn’t’ finish. 

One of the early obstacles was to crawl under barbed wire.  There were two of these on the course.  I found these hard because it tore up my knees to army crawl through the dirt.  I had to take my pack off and push it ahead of me, which was a pain and got it all dirt covered.  Many people roll like logs under the barbed wire.  This seemed to work for them but they kept kicking me in the head in the process as I was moving pretty slow. 

My strategy on the obstacles was to get as much help as I could, take my time and not get injured. 

Another signature obstacle early in the race is the Bucket Carry.  You get handed a plastic 5 gallon bucket.  You have to fill it up with gravel and carry it up, around and down the hill.  It turns out all my yoga and core was good for these carrying things – or maybe it’s all the years I’ve spent running through airports with bags – but I found this really easy and you can see me smiling in the photos.  I’m having a blast. 

There were a constant series of walls you have to climb over of different heights.  I managed the shorter ones, but with my ability to do 3 pullups I had to get help getting over the tall ones.  In the open division getting help is encouraged. Teamwork is part of the Spartan value system.  Good thing too, because without help I would not have made it through many of those obstacles. 

It was a warm day.   The course was dry from lack of rain.  I was glad to have the water pack because I was working hard and sweating. 

They did manage to engineer in some mud pits in the second half of the race, including one that you had to go completely underwater to get under an obstacle, but these were quite manageable. 

The big water obstacle was an actual open water swim about half way around the course.  I say ½ way because it was about 6 miles in but time-wise this was probably 1/3 of the way through.  Like many ultra-type events they back loaded much of the difficulty and the back half of the course took much longer.  It’s a mental game. They like to throw hard stuff at you when you’re tired and think you’re almost done. 

I knew the race played this way from reading Joe’s book.  One manifestation was to have an obstacle right after every hard climb.  Another was to have nonsensical mile markers along the course. The actual distance was somewhere between 14 – 15 miles.  If you were watching for mile markers you were playing a fools game because they were purposefully random to mess with you. 

The water obstacle was a lake near the start line around 6 miles in.  You hit this after running (well I ran) down the mountain and you’re well warmed up by then.  It’s preceded by a tall climbing obstacle.  These climbing obstacles were all super easy, unless you were afraid of heights.  I joked that we had playground equipment in the 70’s when I was a kid that was worse.  

When you got to the shore line they stuffed you into one of those big orange life jackets.  Which, prevents people from drowning, but also prevents those of us with a background in triathlon from swimming.  The water was advertised as 50 degrees Fahrenheit.  More hyperbole.  I would guess it was around 65 or 70 but cold enough that when people go from running down the mountain into the water they immediately cramp up to holy hell. 

I started cramping too, but knew what was up and just tried to relax my legs.  I wasn’t getting any propulsion from my kicking anyhow with the shoes on.  The best strategy seemed to be to float on your back and use your arms to avoid the leg cramps and the lean on giant life jacket. 

When you got to the middle there was a bridge with rope ladders hanging from it.  This was called the Tarzan bridge.  You were supposed to climb the rope ladder and swing across dangling rope hand holds to the other side.  Swimming in cold water and climbing the rope ladder was no problem but I just don’t have the hand grip strength to swing from ropes and plummeted back into the water after my second grip.

This is where I ended up doing my first 30 burpee penalty.  I ended up doing 90 on-course penalty burpees.  Twice for these dangly obstacles and once for being a total spaz in the spear throw. 

I did all the burpees I was assigned. I didn’t do them well, but I did them.  Mine were more like the down-dogs I had trained for than the clean Spartan burpee.  Another advantage of being in the open division.  Then they made us swim/wade another ¼ mile to get back on the trail and the really hard climbing that was to come. 

One obstacle I am tremendously proud of is the rope climb.  This is just what it sounds like.  You climb a rope 20 feet and ring a bell.  The last time I had done this was in 8th grade.  And as a chubby kid with no upper body strength I was awful at it.  But this time I wanted to do it. I set my goal to at least try every obstacle and give it my best.

For some reason I had out run the pack and was alone at the rope climb.  I chose a rope.  I stood and slowed my breathing.  I took a deep breath and centered my hands to my heart with my eyes closed.  Then I climbed that rope and rang that bell like a champ.  I may have screamed “F-You, rope” in some sort of mindless exorcism of eight grade demons. 

After the water obstacle the majority of the competitors seemed to be spent. They were all walking.  Every time I came to a flat spot in the trail there would be 20-30 people lounging around resting.  Not me.  When the trail opened up I was psyched to have running room and took off at a trot.  Why walk?  You’re going to get there faster running and you use a different muscle set. 

I had been choking down a Gu every hour or so when I felt my energy flagging.  And they helped.  I also brought some Endurolytes with me in a sealed plastic canister but they got all broken up from the jostling but they were gone about 3 hours in.

Due to my lack of proper preparation and poor expectation setting I brought enough supplies for a 4 hour race and ended up going 6 ½ hours.  I was hitting the wall in those last couple hours.  Nothing I haven’t felt before.  Even in my current lean state I’ve got plenty of fat to fall back on.  Not really much I could do except keep moving forward.

Then it got hard.  About 3 ½ to 4 hours into the race we headed up the final climb.  Up until this point we had climbed parts of the mountain 2-3 times already.  It alternated from trooping up the ski slope to scrambling up some gnarly single path technical in the woods between the slopes.  And when I say gnarly I mean it.  Very steep, loose dirt, roots, rocks and trees.  In places you could use your hands to pull yourself up.  They even had ropes in particularly steep spots. 

What made these technical sections hard was you could only go as fast as the person in front of you and there were few opportunities to pass.  Technically it’s known as “the theory of constraints” – which is a fancy way of saying everyone moves as fast as the slowest person.  You’d have to pick your spots and try to jump by people.  Otherwise it was a conga line of slow moving feet.  It made it hard to choose a good line and get a rhythm going. 

The one potential upside was all the young cross fitter booty in cross fitter booty shorts I had to eyeball from six inches away all day long.  That wasn’t awful.  They may not know how to trail run but they look good in their clothes. 

Going down was the same gnarly single path but you could build up momentum and get by people easier.  A couple times I tucked in behind the ultra-runners who seemed to have some sort of implied passing right and just followed them.  Once I figured it out I was just brazenly running the left fringe of the trail blowing by people by the score. 

I’d yell “Ding! Ding!” or “Out of control old guy!” (that got a couple chuckles) or “Coming through!” but overall they had no sense of humor and yelled at me unless I said “on your left!” I’m not used to people being so cranky at a trail race.  But these weren’t trail runners.  And this is the big reason I placed relatively high.  They walked.  I ran.  And I have to tell you it was fun bouncing through the woods, swinging from trees and passing people. 

Some of the open field descents were too steep to run.  You had to do that shuffle hop movement where you’re basically out of control and just touching the ground to slow down every once in a while. 

This was dicey because the pack was thick and everyone else, especially later in the race was not handling the descents with much dignity.  Apparently they were having knee and quad burnout because they were fighting the downhills.  They were stopping a lot, walking backwards or sideways and even scooching down on their bums.  I had to avoid all this. 

There were a couple steep sections where people would kick rocks loose and then those rocks would roll down the hill at velocity like 2-3 pound missiles.  Everyone would scream “Rock”.  You’d hear “Rock!” and then “Owe! That really hurt!”

I made it through all the hard stuff without falling except once in the woods where I went elbow deep into a mud hole where a spring came out of the mountainside. 

Then as I was careening down one of the last descents in the open slope I caught a toe.  I was in open ground so I tried to tuck and roll and it worked I popped back up on my feet.  But, in the process I slammed my shin and my elbow on some rocks.  The shin really hurt.  There wasn’t much I could do about it.  I pulled up my calf sleeves so I wouldn’t have to look at the wound, gritted my teeth and kept running – hoping I didn’t do too much damage.

Then there was the last climb.  By this point we were well into the race.  I was well out of fuel and running on fumes.  It was a super steep 2 mile hike straight up the gondola path to the top of the mountain.  This was a death march for everybody.  It was just a long conga line 3-4 across slogging up the slope.  I will admit to stopping and resting a number of times on this ascent. 

When we final clambered out into open ground at the very top of the mountain it was in the clouds and windy.  The spectators up there had coats on and were shivering.  The temperature dropped and being mostly naked you would think I’d be cold, but I was well into suffer mode and the cold air woke me up a bit.  Now I knew we were done climbing and the finish was down at the bottom of the mountain somewhere. 

Of course there was an obstacle at the top of the mountain that had to do with carrying logs like suitcases which was no problem.  I caught my breath and took off down the fire road.  I leaned on my training again, cleaned up my form and ran.  I used my core and it felt awesome to be moving again after all that slow hiking. 

Coach kept telling me not to worry about the race, that the Kardashians could do it.  Could the Kardashians do it?  Yeah, if they had enough time. 

Overall on the course I saw a number of people that really didn’t look like they should be doing a race this hard.  I think the positive is that assuming you started early enough you could take as much time as you wanted.  You could take all day and work as a team and in that sense anybody could do it. 

I did see people getting taken off the course for injuries.  Mostly knees and ankles.  I think some of them may have been faking an injury to get of the damn mountain!

For all the out of shape types there was definitely the lean, cross fit archetype as well.  Lots of compact, fit looking people with six pack abs.  That’s the Spartan community. This race was the culmination of a long journey for many of them, from the sprint, to the super and now their ultimate conquest of the beast.  I met people from all over the country. I passed one guy who had flown in from Australia. 

I was wondering if I would see anyone with phones or earbuds on the course.  I know the Millennials love their phones but the obstacles make having wires a bad idea.  I didn’t see any wires. I did see a couple wireless headphones, but the one surprising thing I came across was speakers.  At least 4 people I passed had speakers strapped to their packs and were blasting music.  I don’t know how they managed the water obstacles with those. 

Mostly it was millennial hip-hop music that I am too old to appreciate and I remember some Blink182 late in the race but I passed a dude up one of the scrambles and he was blasting some Lynyrd Skynrd.  I obligingly yelled “Whatdayall wanna hear?. Free bird!”  He said it was random and the next song might be Christian music.  We all agreed this climb would be an excellent place to convert people – the kind of place that made you want to ask God for help. 

So yeah, that’s a new one on me.  Speakers strapped to your backpack in a race. 

To finish up the narrative I got to the bottom of the mountain, ready to be done with it.  But they put 5 obstacles in the last ¼ mile just to mess with you.    spazzed out on the spear throw and had to do 30 burpees which left me totally drained for the subsequent log carry.  I managed the Atlas ball carry.  I had no hope of the last dangly rope thing and did another 30 burpees (these took a while because I was running on fumes).  Then over the last A-frame climby thing and a final leap across the fire and I was done. 

The picture I had of myself leaping over the fire in my head was much more flattering than the actual picture.  I look like a hobo fleeing a structure fire.  When we were watching the finish earlier some fit young dude literally did a flip over the fire.  That is styling.  Not me.  I’m the dirty hobo. 

Was it hard? Yeah. Was it the hardest thing I’ve ever done? No way. 

People who have worn their Garmins on the course clock it at 14.83 miles.  They also clock 6,700 feet of elevation gain.  That’s more than a mile.  That’s more than Wapack.  That’s more than the Grand Canyon.  So, if you want to run this version of the Spartan race go get your lederhosen and start mountain training.

The man who won the elite version of my race on Saturday was a 26 year old who did it in 3:32.  The woman was a 29 year old who did it in 4:34. 

In my open division the winner came in at 4:15 the very last runner took 17 hours to cover the course.  That’s a long day.  The average looks to be in the 8-9 hour range. 

Just so everyone knows I want credit for the memorization obstacle.  The way that works is that you have to memorize a number early in the race and they are supposed to ask you for it later in the race.  Both Teresa and I had to memorize the number, and I took great pride in knowing that my familiarity with memorization techniques would give me the clear advantage.  But no one ever askes either of us for our numbers!  For the record Quebec-949-5373.

We slept in an old hotel in White River Junction and grabbed some barbeque and a craft brew.  I earned it.  I had a bit of a hard time sleeping because I had so many open scrapes and wounds every time I rolled over my whole body lit up like tearing a Band-Aid off. 

Teresa tackled the sprint the next day and due to robust genetics she placed 1st in her age group, proving all Millennials aren’t soft.  I was getting around fine.  My quads were a bit sore but nothing like after a hard road marathon.  I could tell I went deep into the glycogen stores because I had the odd struggle with finding the right nouns. 

As the week has progressed the scrapes are healing.  The nastiest is a rope burn on the back of my ankle from one of the traversing obstacles.  I was oddly body sore all over like I had been rolled up in a blanket and beaten with sticks.  Nothing hurt badly, but everything hurt a little.

I’m content with 6 ½ hour finish.  Will I go back?  Maybe for the shorter races to get the other 2 pieces of the medal and complete the ‘trifecta’.  After all I started with the hard one. 

Teresa and I had a nice adventure.  I got a firsthand look at the Spartan races.  I don’t know about all the courses but this one, this beast in Killington, ran a bit like an ultra, maybe a 30k in effort level.  If you’re looking for something interesting go ahead and try a Spartan.

Direct download: SpartanUp.mp3
Category:Running -- posted at: 9:14pm EDT

The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast Episode 4-348 – Kristy Jo and Power Foods!

 (Audio: link) [audio:]
Link epi4348.mp3

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -

Hello my friends and welcome to episode 4-348 of the RunRunLive Podcast.  I ran a bit long last episode with Mike.  I was up against a deadline so I just let it slide.  I’ll try to better this time. You may have noticed I started slipping cookies into the end of the show after the outro.  A ‘cookie’ in the lingo of the podcasting ‘biz’ is a blooper that I find particularly engaging.  Like last week when I either wrote into my script or spell checked in that Australopithecines had ‘disposable’ thumbs!

That’s just too funny not to share. 

Today we speak with Kristy Jo.  I love that name.  It’s like something from a TV show. Kristy shares some very good tips and tricks around her Power Foods nutrition plan. I read through her book and it’s quite sensible.

I know this whole weight loss nutrition thing is a real challenge for so many people and I thought we’d give you some pointers from someone who has been through it all and get her approach. 

I have been steadily losing weight as well.  I wrapped up my 30 day plan at the end of August but decided to keep it going.  My training is going really well at the lighter weight. I want to see where I can get to by the Portland Marathon next month. 

Last episode I erroneously said I was down to 170 pounds. That was incorrect.  What I meant was 175 pounds, which is still good, because I started at 185ish.  I’m currently in the low 170’s with a body fat percentage of in the 10’s.  Body fat percentage is a much better metric than weight or BMI.  A good range for a guy my age is in the low teens. 

All that aside what I’m really pleased with is how much better workouts feel and how well my heart is responding.  That’s how I define ‘feeling healthy’ and that’s what I’m going for. 

We have a wonderfully hewn, well crafted, and individually designed for your specific needs - show for you today.  It’s a thing of beauty this show.  I had it hand crafted by virgin baby koalas just for you.

In section one I’ll answer some rapid fire running questions.  In section 2 I’ll talk about the Wapack Trail race I ran over Labor Day weekend. 

I was wondering if anyone was going to write in about my math problem when I told the story of the store clerk in Atlanta.  And I wasn’t disappointed.  For the record, I know that 30% plus 20% can be calculated 2 different ways.  When you combine a 20% discount with a 30% discount the answer is either 50% or 44% depending how you apply the discounts.  Glad to see you’re paying attention.  Makes me feel loved.

There are a billion podcasts these days aren’t there?  It’s funny how the cycles turn.  Someone should do some research on it.  First it was just us hobbyists and the big news outlets.  Now everyone with a platform has gotten the message that a podcast is a must-have channel – especially the internet marketing folks. 

Thank you for joining me on my journey.  You don’t have to.  I’m doing it because I like doing it. It allows me to practice my creativity and production.  It forces me to think critically about topics.  It allows me to interact with people I find interesting.  I explore topics and people that are interesting to me, that’s why I can keep producing for 9+ years and 350 shows.  I do it for myself. 

At the same time, whenever I create anything I think about the audience.  I ask the question “Why do you care?”  This keeps me from getting too wrapped up in myself and allows me to add value.  If you don’t care I’m just an annoying old dude that you sat next to on a long flight and won’t shut up even though you put your headphones in and pretended to sleep.  I don’t want to be that guy. 

I do have a membership option to defray the cost because I’m a capitalist at heart and not a charity!  I’m working on a proper set of books but as near as I can figure I spend about $1,500 a year on the podcast.  Consider buying a membership. I’m still working on a separate iTunes feed for it.  My guy in Nigeria can’t quite figure out how to make the remote header calls work with my wordpress plugin, but I’m working on it.  If you’ve known me for any length of time you know I’m patient.  When I decide to do something it takes on the inevitability of a glacier. 

The RunRunLive podcast is Ad Free and listener supported.  We do this by offering a membership option where members get Access to Exclusive Members Only audio

Last week I uploaded two, count ‘em, two, book reviews.  One for the Neal Stephenson SevenEves scifi tome and another for Moonwalking with Einstein, a treatise on memory techniques.

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How about some useful running information?  How about that?  Instead of all this waffling on about the creative act?  OK

One of the workouts Coach gave me this week was a medium effort hill workout.  Many times you will run longer or faster hill workouts for leg strength or as a type of speed workout or threshold workout.  That’s not what this particular workout is for.  This is a workout to practice form.

Hills are a great place to practice form because running uphill naturally forces you up onto your forefoot, to take shorter, more rapid strides and to lift your knees.  Hills bring the form to you.  

For the medium effort hill repeat you are only doing 30 seconds. That’s long enough to get into your form but not long enough to stress you.  You do the workout at medium effort, so maybe a 7-8 on a scale of 1-10. 

People always ask ‘how steep should the hill be?’  For these medium effort repeats you can actually answer that question.  When you get into the repeat itself your form should be clean.  If you’re having to lean forward or struggling to get your feet turning over – the hill is too steep. 

When you run the repeat focus on pushing off rapidly from the forefoot.  Push your hips forward.  Run tall.  Keep your chin up, your shoulders high and loose and your hands high and loose.  Focus on the form, not the effort.  Don’t carry anything in your hands. 

Jog down the hill and don’t start another rep until your heart rate settles down.  I usually leave my bottle at the bottom of the hill.  I stop when I get back, take a drink, walk a bit and when my HR falls under zone 2 I’ll ease into the next rep.  I also find a stick and scratch a tally mark into the dirt after every rep.  It makes a game out of it. 

Do a set of 10-15 of these.  These are great, especially if you are trying to clean up your form.  Like I said a 4-6% hill will automatically help you clean up your form.  And I’m pretty sure the sine of that angle is the opposite over the hypotenuse, but I could be wrong. 

Practice makes perfect. 

Do your practice. 

On with the show.  

Section one –

Running Tip Roundup -.

Voices of reason – the conversation

Kristy Jo Hunt

My Skype is "kristyjohunt."

My home website is but there is much under construction with funnels, and I fear not everything leads back to one congruent space. I would love to talk about my background with long distance running and why I got into it (disordered eating and thinking it would solve weight issues) to why I got out of it (chronic pain with my 50-degree scoliosis that I pushed through the pain due to the disordered eating habits and FEAR), as well as my coaching of long-distance athletes with meal structure and timing that we have found to be very successful and optimize their body weight and energy for better times.

I will put my bio below:

Kristy Jo Hunt is a Certified Personal Trainer, Fitness Nutrition Specialist, published author, and natural Women’s Figure Competitor. After overcoming over a decade of disordered eating battles, she began a Facebook page in 2012. This Facebook page grew to be a full-blown education-based body transformation company called Body Buddies.  Her team of coaches helps people correct health issues, overcome disordered eating, achieve their goals, and reach their desired aesthetics.

She is the author of the book series and recipe book line, The Power Foods Lifestyle, and founded the company, Body Buddies, a transformation and education coaching system. Body Buddies teaches strategic implementation of scientific principles using psychological profiling to help people make sustainable changes in their nutrition and fitness efforts. She hosts online group challenges, coaches clients one-on-one, and teaches seminars for athletic teams, corporations, and church groups.  As a way to help many people for free, she hosts the Body Buddies podcast, YouTube Channel, and Social Media feeds where she shares tips and tricks to nutrition, exercise, and mindset training.

Her greatest happiness comes from watching others succeed and overcome obstacles that previously prevented them from reaching their goals. 

I would love to link to in the show notes and I would love to offer my free gift to your listeners of my free book (they just pay shipping) at

Kristy Jo


Kristy Jo Hunt
CPT/FNS/Author, Body Buddies

929-BOD-BUDS | | | Skype: kristyjohunt

Section two

Wapack 2016 -



Well my friends you have nibbled your way on proteins, vegetables and carbohydrates through to the end of  episode 4-348 of the RunRunLive Podcast. 

Are you full?  Are you satiated?  Did you have to unbutton your jeans so all that good info would fit? 

I’ve got a short turn around now and I’m heading out to do the Spartan Beast in Killington Vt.  I’m dragging my youngest along and she’s going to do the sprint on Sunday. 

I was looking at the instructions and anyone who starts the Beast after noon needs to carry a headlamp and two glow sticks…And they pull you off the course if you haven’t finished by 9:00 pm.  Really? I have no intention of being on that course for 9 hours.  Am I missing something? 

Coach is still trying to talk me out of it so I can focus on the Portland marathon on October 9th.  What I like about him is that he’s old-school.  He thinks every race is an Olympic qualifier.  But, I’m at the point in my life where I have to try new things and have some fun too. 

That being said if I can maintain the diet and come out of Portland strong I’ll look at the calendar and see if there isn’t something serious to train for.  I’ve got to figure out if we are going to do the Groton Marathon again this year.

Many of you are running your goal races now or over the next few weeks.  Good luck with those.  Remember that the hay is in the barn and there’s nothing you can do in the last couple weeks to make up training. 

As you are in your taper towards your race you can use a couple of the things we talked about here to help you stay sane.  As your training load gets lighter you have an opportunity and the time to do some of the fine-tuning things. 

  • Think about practicing the mediation and visualization that we’ve talked about.
  • Work in some easy yoga every other day to stretch and strengthen your machine.
  • Do some meal planning around your taper weeks to go into the race lean and strong with a lot of energy.

That’s how you apply the tools from the conversations we have here.

That’s the real trick with all the content available to you.  You’re like a DJ.  You are the creative genius for your life.  You take all this stuff in and mix it to make your own sound, your own movie and craft your own story. 

Make sure you get the ending right.

And I’ll see you out there.

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -


Direct download: epi4348.mp3
Category:Running -- posted at: 3:22pm EDT

The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast Episode 4-347 – Mike Croy and the One Breath

 (Audio: link) [audio:]
Link epi4347.mp3

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -

Hello my friends and welcome to episode 4-347 of the RunRunLive Podcast.  Today we are going to reconnect with our old friend Mike the DirtDawg who has been doing a lot of useful work around mindfulness in his life, with his students and in his community.  I chat with him about some practical ways we can use mindfulness in our lives and some basic, easy ways to implement it. 

In section one I’m going to zoom in on how meditation or mindfulness can help amateur athletes.  In section two I’m going to do a quick summary of how a 30 day project works and how you can use it to get some traction in your life. 

Because, as I write this I’m wrapping up my latest 30 day plan.  I tend to try to do a bunch of things in parallel when I do 30 day projects.  This one I was trying to get up early, clean up my nutrition, avoid alcohol and work on my next book project. 

It went very well, except for the last couple days where I was on vacation – that always causes some hiccups in the process.  But I managed to keep the damage minimal while not being bad company.  Up until that point though I had lost a bunch of weight and had mat all my goals and felt fantastic. 

I didn’t get as much work done on my book project as I would have liked, but all in all it was a good month for me.

I was particularly pleased with this because I took a 2 week break from running at the same time I took on the 30-day project. I kicked off the project on the 1st of August the day after my trail marathon.  The Achilles was hurting so coach gave me a week off.  After a week I ran once and felt awful.  I ended up walking back from that run.  That run was day 7 or 8 of the 30 day project, and as I will explain, that is when the project sucks the most.  I was in a bad place with no energy.

My runs have been awful all summer.  I just felt sick, had no energy and was hating my runs.  I got them done but it was a struggle.  That’s one of the reasons I decided to put my foot down and use a 30-day project to clean up.  I decided to clean up my nutrition and with Rachel’s help rebuild my healthy biome.

After the day-7 run debacle Coach smelled over-training and gave me another week off.  Not off, but off from running.  That’s when I started to turn the corner.  About 14 days in he finally gave me the green light and told me do an easy 1:15 run. 

At this point I was lighter, healthier and well rested. I decided to go out at night after work. The night was cool, around 60, and the humidity had let up. I left everything at home and just wore a pair of racing shorts.  No phone, no bottle, no shirt – just my Garmin and the heart strap. 

And - Oh my god! I felt weightless.  I couldn’t control myself and was literally flying.  I didn’t even start to feel any tiredness until the last long climb up to my house.  Coach was a bit peeved when I posted my ‘easy’ run and it turned out to be a 8+ mile marathon pace tempo run. But really, sometimes you just can’t help yourself. 

The other thing I’m noticing is that my HR is staying down.  It’s behaving nicely and just the way I would expect it to. 

My Achilles is still a little sore but I’m working it.  My runs since then have been fairly fabulous.   Plus, since I’m getting up early anyhow I can knock them out in the morning without much suffering.  It’s all good.  The wave is cresting again. 

I’m going to see if I can keep the nutrition going until October.  In 30 days I got down to 175 pounds which is very light for me.  I think with a little focus I could get under 170 and I haven’t been there, ever.  I’m curious to see what that would do for my racing. 

By the way, when I say ‘Clean Nutrition’ I mean eating 98% healthy, whole food, nothing packaged, lots of fruit and veg and nuts.  An occasional hit of fish or meat if I feel like I’m not getting enough calories.  I’ve cut out fried food, bread, most dairy and as much sugar as I can find on the food labels – although sometimes the bastards sneak some by me.

When I set up the project with Rachel I told her my focus was not to lose weight but to get healthy.  But, as usual, once you focus on eating clean and healthy, the weight just comes off naturally.  It’s not due to a lack of calories per se, just a different mix.  Remember, the first two weeks of this I wasn’t even running. 

There are a couple things I’m doing slightly different this time around.  First, I’m trying to get enough healthy fats.  I include olive oil in my salads and other meals as a condiment, and I mix a spoonful of coconut oil into my oatmeal in the morning – because apparently coconut oil is the new superfood.

Second, we’ve been experimenting with lots of probiotic foods like KimChi, Sauerkraut, pickles, organic honey and homemade fermented beet juice.  This time of year I’m getting fresh chard and cukes from my garden too and they come with some helpful organisms riding along from the great outdoors.  You can get useful critters from any of the fresh from field produce available this time of year.

Check your labels to find certified organic or live culture foods.  To be clear, I don’t mean the well-known yoghurts and other probiotic labeled dairy products which, in my humble opinion, are just another packaged food ploy to stuff more dairy and sugar down your throat.

I don’t know if it is good or bad but my innards are a lot happier now after a month or so of working the probiotic, healthy food plan into my life.  It’s amazing how large a change you can make in a short amount of time with a little focus. 

The RunRunLive podcast is Ad Free and listener supported.  We do this by offering a membership option where members get Access to Exclusive Members Only audio

Last week I uploaded two, count ‘em, two, book reviews.  One for the Neal Stephenson SevenEves scifi tome and another for Moonwalking with Einstein, a treatise on memory techniques.

    • Member only race reports, essays and other bits just for you!
  • Exclusive Access to Individual Audio Segments from all Shows
    • Intro’s, Outro’s, Section One running tips, Section Two life hacks and Featured Interviews – all available as stand-alone MP3’s you can download and listen to at any time.

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I was reading the New York Times in the airport on my way back from vacation.  There was an article in there about Lucy, the famous Australopithecine.  They found Lucy’s fossilized bones in Kenya in 1974 and it really kicked off the study and understanding of all the different branches of the hominid family tree since.

Lucy was a small, juvenile, female Australopithecine that lived in the forested grasslands of Africa a few million years ago.  They weren’t humans in the sense that we think of Homo sapiens - the thinking ape.  They were a side branch or transitional form of hominid that seems to have been moving out of the trees to walk upright on the ground.

According to the news, it seems Lucy’s 2M+ year-old fossilized bones were making a tour of the US.  Some scientists took the opportunity to create a thorough CAT scan of them.  In this way they could get detailed digital images that they could analyze without having to have the bones themselves.

One of the things that they discovered is a number of compression fractures.  These are the type of fractures you get when you hit something hard, like in car accident or a fall from a great height.  They postulate that poor little Lucy met her demise by falling out of a tall tree. 

I question these conclusions.  I don’t think anything so mundane happened.  I see the forensic evidence and I think Lucy was definitely into extreme sports.  She was probably wing-suit flying off the ridge from mount Kilimanjaro or paragliding over the volcanoes.  Maybe she was caught in a sudden gust of wind or was rattled by an ill-timed tremor from imbibing too much Red Bull.  Without fully developed opposable thumbs she couldn’t hang on and she crashed. 

I’m no scientist but I have watched many episodes of CSI Las Vegas and that’s where the data leads me.  It was like an Australopithecine version of Point Break.  They had some mad-dog skills and liked to live on the edge those Australopithecines.  Live fast, die young, leave a fossilized pile of bone fragments – that was their motto.

On with the show.

Section one –

Meditation and mindfulness in Sport -

Voices of reason – the conversation

Mike Croy – “DirtDawg50k”

Mike Croy serves as a high school principal for special education students who have been diagnosed with severe emotional impairments. His area of expertise lies in working with at risk students and families for the past 20 years.  Mike is driven to serve by his belief that we are all works in progress and the key is to keep moving forward.

Mike began teaching yoga and mindfulness/meditation classes to his students as a result of him obtaining his 200 RYT (Yoga Teacher Training) and has since started to offer it to staff and adults to help others find the space to be mindful and breathe in a hyper connected world.  He is also a 24x marathoner and has completed several ultramarathons including the Burning River 100.

Contact information:


Root 2 Shine:   


Dirt Dawg's Rambling Diatribe:


Section two

Anatomy of a 30-day project -


Well my friends you have mindfully sat and watched your body’s breath through the end of episode 4-347 of the RunRunLive Podcast. 


Ohmm Padni ma…

Yeah.  Rock solid.  Good job.

I’m rolling off the long weekend and heading down to Atlanta to work.  I was out in Chicgao on holidays for a long weekend.  In my career I’ve been there many times but it was fun to go as a tourist.  I got up every morning and went out to run around the lakefront and Grant Park.  Two out of Three days it poured on me in the morning.  But that was ok.  I just took my shirt off and enjoyed myself. 

I did a 2:20 long run Sunday morning and the path was packed with Chicago Marathon aspirants and club runners.  The triathletes were swimming their workouts in the lake. It just so happened that the Chicago Triathlon was also going on over at Grant Park.  There was a constant stream of bicycles on Lakeshore drive the whole time I was out. 

We took the architecture tour up the river one night, went to Second City another night and then caught a Cubs game another night.  We walked through the Chicago Institute of Art one day as well.  Like I said it poured rain, but only while I was out running.  

I’ll share one image with you.  Monday morning I was running a fartlek run. I got up a 6:00 AM local time, ran down the river trail, crossed over on the Lakeshore Drive bridge, ran out to the end of Navy pier and circled around to head north on the lakeshore path. 

It was early, overcast and humid.  It hadn’t started to rain yet.  The lake was calm and the triathletes were cruising in the shallows parallel to the shore making little wave here and there. There are some sections of beach and sections of concrete along here as the path winds along the coves and points. 

I passed the remnants of a beach volleyball tournament that was being disassembled.  Not too many runners were out yet.  Bicyclists were making their way inbound to the city.  Early morning maintenance crews were picking up trash and readying the day’s projects.

At one point as I ran along the cement wall I could look down and see into the water of Lake Michigan.  It was clear enough for me to see the sandy bottom and I had to stop because there was a 3-5 pound bass going about its business there immune to my strivings. 

A few minutes later as I pushed north, throwing in occasional 2 minute surges, the heavens opened up with a warm downpour.  This broke the humidity and washed the sweat from my body.  My shoes squished along as I weaved around the deeper puddles.  Another good morning run in the windy city.

“Life Moves pretty fast.  If you don’t stop to look around once in a while you could miss it.” Ferris

Next up for me is the Wapack Trail race 18 miler.  I’m just going to try to have fun and enjoy myself.  If I can get in under 4 hours and not hurt myself that will be great! After that I have that Spartan race the next weekend.  I’m going to take Teresa up with me and spend the night.  My Beast race is on Saturday and she’s going to do the sprint version on Sunday. 

Coach wanted me to skip it and focus on the Portland Marathon in October.  If I stay on my nutrition plan and manage to squeeze some training in and stay healthy I could do well out there.  I’m not worried about it though.  I think my days of overwrought expectations are over!

Speaking of overwrought expectations, on one of the planes on the way to Chicago a lady next to me was reading “Fast Girl” – Suzy Favor-Hamilton’s book.  I asked if it was any good and she said she was done with it and gave it to me.  I took it and read it over the next couple days.  I’ll see if I can’t write up a full review but I’m still processing it. 

Suzy was a contemporary of mine.  We’re about the same age. I remember her on the cover of that running magazine back in the 1990’s.  She was fast and pretty and the media loved her.  She made 3 Olympic teams in the 1500 but mentally imploded in all of them. 

It turns out she’s bipolar and has been struggling with mental illness her whole life. The final manifestation of that mental illness was her becoming a high-paid escort in Las Vegas.  Apparently she brought the same enthusiasm to that as she brought to everything else – but that’s a symptom of being bipolar. 

I follow Suzy on Facebook and she is a genuinely likable person.  I’m still processing her story because there is so much intertwined here with the competition, the mental illness and yes, the sex.  It’s a complicated mess for her and her family.  I’m glad that these types of illnesses have less of a stigma now than they did, but it’s still a complicated mess. 

It makes you wonder, when your mind is capable of such deception and complexity in the extreme, how much of what’s going on in your head is real and how much any of it actually matters? 

The human mind is a complex and sometimes deceptive intelligence.  We should all be careful to remember that.

I’ll leave you to think on that.  As you ping pong around on the inside of your overly complicated homo sapiens skull bone – how much does any of that noise matter? 

Everyone thinks they are the center of the universe.  We worry about what other’s think. We worry about being good enough, rich enough, smart enough, strong enough – we create, or allow that complex human brain to create stories and chaos.  You don’t have to create that chaos.  All that noise is inside your own head and you and I, if we want to we can quiet it.

Maybe you think you’re alone in the world with your deamons.  But you’re not. We’re in this together my friend. 

Quiet your mind.  Get some help if you need to.  You’re not alone.  You’ve got us. 

And I’ll see you out there.


MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -


Direct download: epi4347.mp3
Category:Running -- posted at: 3:45pm EDT

The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast Episode 4-346 – Joe De Sena on the Spartan Movement

 (Audio: link) [audio:]
Link epi4346.mp3

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -

Hello my friends and welcome to episode 4-346 of the RunRunLive Podcast.  Thank you for listening.  Sometimes I don’t hear from you for a while and I get lonely.  I wonder if anyone is listening.  I thought it might due to a lack of positive feedback.  I grew up in the 70’s and we were all about positive feedback.  That’s why baby boomers are so needy. 

The topic of today’s show is Spartan.  I interview Joe De Sena the owner of Spartan Races.  He’s a tightly wrapped dude with one of those clear, focused minds and the work ethic to support it. 

In the first section I’m going to talk through my initial impressions of the Spartan race and its training.  I have one coming up in September and I’m starting to worry about my fitness level.  I expressed my concerns about things like not being able to do more than 2 pullups to coach.  He says I’m taking it too seriously and, I quote, “A Kardashian could do that race.”  Except he’s not the one running it!

In the second section I’ll think a bit on our fascination with Sparta and what it says about us. 

My training is focused on strength and biking right now.  I gave my Achilles a week off after the trail marathon but not really because I was down on the Cape over the next weekend walking the beach and riding for hours.  It was great to spend some time with myself but I think I may have overdone it. 

I tried to do a 1:30 run on the roads when I got back and I ended up walking back the last mile.  It was the heat and my Achilles.  Now I’m giving some more time to heal.  I’m stretching and massaging and rehabbing.  I’m spending time on the bike and working on my core. 

It is a good time of year to be taking a break from running.  It’s still super hot and humid.  

Speaking of hot and humid I watched the Women’s Olympic Marathon and I though Amy, Shalane and Desi did a really good job of running their plans.  They hung with the best runners in the world and all finished in the top 10.  They inspired me and I’m sure they’ll inspire the next generation of American women. 

Buddy the old wonder dog is doing well.  He’s almost all recovered from his lump surgery.  That should make him more comfortable in the short run.  It’s too hot for him.  He hasn’t been running except for what he normally does when we go for walks off-leash in the woods.  This time of year we get a lot of thunderstorms rolling through at nighttime with all the energy in the atmosphere. 

Katie brought his crate up to the living room and when it gets really bad we can put him in there so he doesn’t hurt himself.  Thunderstorms make him mental.  He’ll go into the tub in the girl’s bathroom or into one of the closets and start digging.  We cage him up for his own protection.

By the way, I went for the follow up visit with my heart doctor and there’s nothing wrong with me that they can see.  Which is good.  That leads me to conclude that my issues earlier in the summer were due to the heat, jet lag and the case of pneumonia with the course of antibiotics.  Basically my body, mind and soul were out of synch!

Which is why I’m focusing on doing a bit of foundational bio-reengineering this month.

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My reengineering project is a 30 day 5AM project.  The anchor of this project is that I’m getting up early every day, as close to 5 AM as I can manage.  The other attributes of it are:

  • No alcohol
  • Work on my nutrition plan to get stronger, rebuild my healthy biome and get leaner.
  • Work on my next book
  • Post a daily accountability video to YouTube to keep the project going.

It’s been going well.  I haven’t hit the 5 AM every day but I’ve been close enough to be within the spirit of the exercise.  I have eliminated alcohol and have been eating clean and focusing on foods that will have a positive impact on my insides.  This weekend I made Kvass, which is a fermented beet juice and pickles using the cucumbers from my garden.  I’m such a home body. 

The work on the book has been doing a lot of circling the work and not actually doing the work, but I’m positive.  My creativity tends to come in bursts.  I’ve gotten the videos up each day consistently and you can see them if you’re interested in that sort of thing at my YouTube channel which is Cyktrussell. (Chris yellow king tom – Russell with two esses and two ells…)

I’ve really learned or relearned some valuable lessons from this project.  First thing is that when you’re dealing with a stable system, like your body, even if it is stable in a place you don’t like, you have to be careful with the quantity and magnitude of changes.  Any change you make is going to cause the system to oscillate. 

A stable system is stable because it has inertia.  It doesn’t want to change.  A stable system resists change and it has memory.  It’s like a rubber band.  The more you pull the more it resists and it always pulls in an effort to return to the stable state.

Biological/mental systems are not digital. You can’t just expect to insert a stimulus and to leap to a different state.  When you insert a stimuli the system won’t change digitally or even linearly.  It will wobble as the opposing forces push and pull.  The more things you try to change the more random the wobbling feels.

In my project I was trying to change sleep patterns and nutrition and my coffee intake and my alcohol consumption all at the same time.  In the first 10 days my system wobbled.  There were days that I was starving.  There were days where I was so tired I couldn’t think or function.  There were days when I felt depressed and defeated. 

When you want to make changes in anything.  When you want to innovate in your life.  You have to be prepared to suffer through an adjustment period. 

I have shared with you before the metaphor that says all projects follow a U-shaped curve.  When you first start the project it’s all unicorns and rainbows and enthusiasm.  When you get to the middle of the project it turns into an endless-seeming, hopeless, slog of work.  As you get closer to the finish it becomes hopeful again.

Another useful metaphor I heard recently is to picture yourself standing on a mountain top.  You have climbed successfully to the top of this mountain but now you want to innovate or improve to a new state.  Picture that new state as another, higher mountain top that you can see across the valley.  You know how to get there. 

You have to go down into the valley and work your way to climb up the other side to get to this new peak.  That’s what innovation is like. 

Identify that next peak.  Keep the vision of that new and next peak in your mind’s eye, even as, especially when, you lose sight of it in the tangled underbrush of the valley. 

On with the show.

Section one –

The Spartan Race and Training for it -

Voices of reason – the conversation

Joe De Sena

Spartan Fit!: 30 Days. Transform Your Mind. Transform Your Body. Commit to Grit. Joe De Sena

Joe De Sena, founder and CEO of Spartan Race, is also a living legend in endurance and adventure racing circles — he completed the 135-mile Badwater Ultramarathon, raced the 140.6 miles of Lake Placid Ironman, and finished a 100-mile trail run in Vermont, all within one week.

In 2014, De Sena authored Spartan Up!, A New York Times Bestseller, that changed countless lives and revealed the secrets to developing the resourcefulness and mental determination needed to become a true Spartan.

Section two

About Spartans and Stoics -


Well my friends you have carried, climbed and crawled through a mud pit to the end of Episode 4-346 of the RunRunLive Podcast. 

I have a knock knock joke you can tell your kids.  Ready? 

Knock knock…

Who’d there?

Old Lady

Old Lady who?

Hey, I didn’t know you could yodel!

One of the great cultural advantages to being at my stage of life is that I can tell Dad jokes. 

Next up for me is the Wapack trail race.  Have you signed up yet?  Even though I’m rehabbing my Achilles right now I am looking forward to Wapack. It’s my favorite kind of trail race.  It’s long enough to be interesting at 18 miles but not long enough to worry about.  It’s technical enough to be interesting with lots of single path and roots and rocks and mountains but that same technical nature keeps you from getting too serious.  And, it’s nice and small with good people. 

I’ll just try to get in under 4 hours and use the Spartan core strength I’m developing to manage it. 

The weekend after is the Spartan race.  I haven’t figured out the logistics for that yet.  Then in October I signed up for the Portland Marathon.  And in December the 4th Annual Groton Marathon if we can pull it off.  

I’m staying busy.  Life has its seasons. 

One thing I’m wondering about is the Boston Marathon.  After training well and not getting my time last year I honestly don’t know if I want to or deserve to run it in 2017.  I do still believe I can run a qualifying time.  It’s a question of when to fit that into my life.  I’m certainly not going to run a qualifying time before September when the times are due. 

I jump an age group in 2018.  I’d like to have at least 20 Bostons but I’d like to earn them.  I don’t know.  I truly do not know.  It’s probably time for a change. 

A bit of learning I can give you kids, and I’ll write more on this at some point is about how you age athletically.  When you look at the literature you see the ability of an athlete tailing off in a nice shallow straight curve.  It shows athletes slowly losing their abilities, measured in finishing times, as they age. The curve drops a couple percentage points at a time.

In my experience that is not how it works.  Like everything else in the human experience this process is non-linear, it is unpredictable and it is specific to the individual.  What I’ve found is that I have lost my speed in chunks, mostly as the result of injuries.  The line is more like a series of waves.  Where after 50 or so each subsequent wave crests a bit lower than the last one.

The real question is not the performance line.  The real question is the fulfillment line, the challenge line and the happiness line.  The tricky task at hand is how to continue to, as our friend Peter says, “Run with joy” as the performance line trends down and the waves of aging break relentlessly against the breakwaters of youth. 

The answer I think is to remember to be grateful.  Grateful for the victories, grateful for challenges and grateful for the chance to get up today and breathe the deep humid air of this good earth. 

Take a deep breath right now, my friends. That is life in your lungs. 


And I’ll see you out there.


MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -


Direct download: epi4346.mp3
Category:Running -- posted at: 8:28pm EDT

The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast Episode 4-345 – Wilson Horrell – Lift Heavy Run Long

 Wilson(Audio: link)




Link epi4345.mp3

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -

Hello my friends and welcome to episode 4-345 of the RunRunLive Podcast.  We’ve got a full agenda for today – so I won’t babble on too much.  I’ve got an interview for you with Wilson Horrell from lift heavy-run-long who has a fascinating and educational back story.

I had done an interview with Josh LaJunie who is an ultra running vegan from New Orleans – but I messed up the recording and I figured we just had a vegan last episode.  The eat vegan on $4 a day got a lot of feedback.  Some folks were very enthusiastic about Ellen’s message, some were less enthusiastic and wanted me to balance that out with some fat-adaptive athletes.  Which I will at some point.

My personal opinion is that nutrition is quite specific to the individual and you need to find what works for you.  That process may involve some coaching but keep an open mind.  As athletes we have the added wrinkle of our performance to think about.

I’m also going to treat you to my Eagle Creek Marathon race report, but true to form it came out so long that’s all I’m going to be able to fit into this episode.  So I’ll put the interview up front and the race report on the back and we’ll call it a day!

Since I’m pretty sure I’m going to run long I’ll cut my comments short.

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Just a quick sentiment …

preikestolen-918955_640On Plateaus…

One of the interesting asides in the book I read last week about memory was a short bit on what to do when you practice something but hit a plateau.  I think we all know this works.  Initially when you learn a new discipline, whether an exercise routine or really, anything new it your learning follows the same basic arc.

Initially it’s hard and you learn slowly.  Then you hit a stretch of rapid improvement. Eventually you plateau.  And then you’re stuck.  You push harder, you practice more hours, but you’re stuck.

The example they use is typing.  Most typists get to a certain point and don’t get any faster.  They get to the ‘good enough’ plateau.

How do you get unstuck?  How do you get through the plateau?

Science shows 3 things that you can do, or at least try.  Mindset, discomfort and approach. .”

The first one is mindset.  When you reach that ‘good-enough’ plateau you self-talk yourself into being as good as you’re going to get.  Your mind says, “Well, since I’m not getting better anymore I must be at the top end of my ability.”  Like everything else once we let our minds tell that story, we internalize it and it manifests.

Like your parents and coaches always told you “Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, either way you’re right!”  You have to fix your mindset.  The people who break through performance plateaus essentially don’t take ‘no’ for an answer.

I’ll give you an example from my book on how to qualify for the Boston marathon.  When I talk to runners about running a qualifying time they will invariably say “I could never do that!”  I always ask a dumb question – “Why not?”  If you reframe your mindset then the question becomes “How do I?” instead of “I can’t” – sometimes it’s as simple as making that mental switch.

The next that has proved to be effective in breaking through plateaus is to force yourself you’re your discomfort zone.  In the typing example this would mean forcing yourself to type at a faster rate even though you are making more mistakes.  Even if you fail a lot – you assume the higher level of performance and hang in there until the plateau is broken.

The key here is you have to really push to spend time in a place where you will most certainly fail consistently at first.  Embracing the failure is part of the key to breaking the plateau.  Starting at a higher level of performance and sticking with it until you catch up is the other part.  Both are very uncomfortable.

The marathon qualification example is to start with the training paces you need to run to qualify.  Even though at first you won’t be able to maintain them.  It will hurt and you will fail.  If you stick with it you can find a new level of performance.

Getting yourself to perform above the comfort zone (plateau) works hand in hand with the mindset of believing you can do it.

Lastly, when you think you can do it, and you force yourself out of your comfort zone into the failure zone you will be forced to find new approaches.  In a sense you can’t operate at that level and it forces you to abandon your existing approach and try approaches that support that higher level of performance.

You will find the consistent areas where you are making mistakes – the failure points.  Just like lowering the water level reveals the rocks, upping your forced performance reveals your weaknesses.  Then you can devise focused practice to fix these failure points and enable the new level.  It’s a virtuous cycle.

When you get to the point of re-evaluating your approach a coach or an expert can be a big plus. They have seen those mistake patterns before and can help you fix them faster.

In the typing example, maybe you find that when you speed up you consistently miss the ‘b’ key or the semi-colon.  You can devise exercises that focus on those.  Or maybe switch to a Dvorak keyboard layout to totally change the approach.

In the qualification example forcing yourself to run those faster-than-comfortable 1600 repeats will reveal flaws in your form and mechanics.  A coach might quickly help you fix it.  Either way you’ll quickly realize you can’t run on your heels and hold those paces.

There you go – simple way to break through a plateau.  Give it a try.

On with the show.

Section one –


Voices of reason – the conversation

Wilson “BeefCake” Horrell

Lift Heavy Run Long Website

LHRL Youtube Channel 

Twitter: @liftrunlong

IG: @liftrunlong

LHRLHey Chris,

My name is Wilson Horrell, sometimes referred to as “Beefcake”, and I am a 39 year old, married, father of 2 children (ages 10 & 7). I am a raging drug addict and alcoholic, who after years of living and unhealthy life and blowing through a $2 million dollar windfall, found running, CrossFit, and people to be my new addiction, as I sobered up and began the process of picking up the pieces. 


I started running 5k’s as an effort to stop smoking and lose some weight. I found a community of trail runners who welcomed, not only me as a person, but were also open to my slow pace. My love of the trail came about immediately, as I enjoyed the lack of pounding that the soft dirt placed on my over-sized body. I heard about Lift Heavy Run Long’s 50mile &400 Deadlift club. I set my sights on this, and ran various distances until this goal was achieved. Since I started on my fitness journey in 2013, I have participated in numerous CrossFit events, some obstacle races, a couple of marathons, a handful of 50k’s, and a 50-miler last November. I am registered for the Tour D’ Spirit 24-Hour Race in Memphis, TN on Sept 30-Oct. 1
I am an incredibly average runner, as well as average athlete. I enjoy the endurance sports, as I like spending long periods of time in introspection. I like the slower paced events, and enjoy listening to the internal struggle that exists between the body and the brain.


I do not take for granted the role that people in the running community, combined with the CrossFit community, played in saving my life, and providing me with happiness. I became a partner in Lift Heavy Run Long, LLC last December because I wanted a challenge and purpose. Our goal is to build as large and strong of a community as possible for those who enjoy an active lifestyle. We want to encourage the people in the fitness community, but also welcome the people who are struggling to make the decision to change their life through fitness. I know first-hand, how scary and intimidating it can be to sign up for that first race, or first fitness class. We want to help people who are struggling to take that first step.


I love positivity, and I love being inspired. I have found that running and lifting provides a multitude of opportunities to connect with other people and be of service. 


I have a blog, which started as fitness journal, but has since turned into an almost daily rambling of all of the craziness that goes through my oddly designed brain. Von and I also started a podcast, where we are trying to find some of the world’s most inspirational people, who are leading lives of fulfillment through following their bliss.

Back Squat 325lbs

Push Press 250lbs

Front Squat 240lbs

Deadlift 415lbs

Fastest 5k 26:20

Fastest 10k 54:36

Sylamore 50K 2015. Finished Dead Last, but was robbed of this title because they grouped the final three of us in alphabetical order 10:22

Stanky Creek 50K 2015 7:30

Tunnel Hill 50miler 14:52 Didn’t finish dead last, but with enough perseverance, I can get there.

Section two

Eagle Creek Trail Marathon -


blingectr-smWell my friends you pulled the one arm bandit’s handle, hit the progressive jackpot, won the car and wheelbarrows full of shiny golden coins that are at the end of Episode 4-345 of the RunRunLive Podcast.  (Really had to work that one didn’t I?)

I’ll keep this quick.  I’ve got a lot of projects going on in parallel this month.

Next up is the Wapack Trail race on September 4th.  I expect some of you to come up and run this with me.  Or just come up and volunteer.  It’s an out-and-back course so you can do as much or as little as you like.

Then in September I’ll be doing that Spartan race and if all goes well I’ll be interviewing Joe the owner for the next episode.

Then I’ll be gunning for the Portland Marathon in October with coach – which actually has some significance because I am aging up another 10 minutes for my Boston Qualification time for 2018.

Then of course we have to decide if we’re going to do the Groton Marathon at Christmas again.  This would be our fourth outing and I was thinking about opening it up to the 50-staters and the Marathon Maniacs.

In the meantime I’m working on my next book and speaking project. And, oh yeah, working full time, traveling and now that my kids are out of college, seeing if we can fix up the house, consolidate our finances and, what the heck, work on my marriage.

In order to support this swarm of ill-conceived projects I’m going to have to get healthy and find some creative time.  So I’ve kicked off a project in August to get healthy.  This includes cleaning up my nutrition, no more alcohol and getting up a 5:00AM every day.  I’m two days into it.

I’m going to make a short video every day when I get up to document it and I’ll see if I can get those up on my YouTube Channel ‘cyktrussell’and on the RunRunLive website.  I can’t imagine why anyone would want to see my burry-eyed, discombobulated 5AM apparition, but I’m doing it for accountability.

When I was hanging out with my sister Lou this weekend she was telling me about a crime data study she had seen.  Basically all the crime data for cities is publically available so institutions have taken to turning the methods of big data loose on it to see if they can learn anything.

It seems one of the things they found, not unexpectedly, was that certain areas of the cities were hot zones for crime.  But they also saw something that they couldn’t explain.  Within these hot spots were small bubbles that were crime free.  There were oases of peace in the worst parts of the city.

When they looked to see why and what caused these bubbles they consistently found that it was due to one person in that neighborhood.  That person ran a gym or a business and kept the kids off the street.  That single person created a clearing for peace to manifest.

One person made that happen.

One person made a difference in their neighborhood.

One person created a bubble of love in the rip tide of hate.

You can be that person.

Be the person your dog thinks you are and I’ll see you out there.

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -


Direct download: epi4345.mp3
Category:Running -- posted at: 11:50am EDT

The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast Episode 4-344 – Ellen Jaffe Jones – Eat Vegan on $4 a Day!

 (Audio: link) [audio:]
Link epi4344.mp3

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -

Hello my friends and welcome to episode 4-344 of the RunRunLive Podcast. 

Today we talk with a fascinating and successful woman – Ellen Jaffe Jones – about how to eat healthy on the cheap!  . 

I connected to Ellen because my daughter brought home Ellen’s book How to Eat Vegan on $4 a Day. I started looking at it and saw that Ellen had a cool back story and was now a practicing endurance sports addict as well as a vegan and an author. 

She has escaped from being a broadcast news personality on a fast track to an unhealthy and early demise by eating better and living a healthier life.  Whether you are vegan or not you can pick up some tips on how to shoehorn some healthier food into your busy life.

She’s also one of those people that we talk to a lot who take control of their story and change directions mid-life.  That should give all of us hope that the only thing stopping any of us is the decision and action to make the change we want and start telling a different narrative about our lives.

I am not vegan but I do like to eat clean-ish.  I get a lot of fruits and vegetables and nuts in my diet.  The thing is, I like fruits and vegetables and nuts.  You have to make these decisions for yourself but there are simple ways to eat a bit healthier.  One is to get your fruit and veg and nuts.  Another is to ease into eating less of the bad stuff. 

It has been consistently shown that there are a small set of lifestyle inputs that have an outsized impact on your health, quality of life and longevity.  Going all the way back to episode 97 in 2010 with Dr. Monte we talked about this:

In no particular order:

Number one:  Eat a healthy diet with lots of fruits and vegetables nuts (fiber). 

Number two:  Don’t smoke.

Number three:  Exercise consistently. 

If you’re listening to my voice here on the RunRunLive Podcast you probably have most of these covered.  All three is great.  If you can’t do all three, two is good and even just one of these is better than nothing.  It’s not black and white.  We’d all like to be perfect but just remember your goal is progress not perfection. 

This is just for your physical health.  There’s probably a similar list that includes cultivating a positive attitude, working on your self-awareness and having an attitude of abundance. 

There’s no winning the game.  We all end up in the same place. What you get is a few more good years.  A better life and a better legacy, maybe. 

Anyhow – in summary – Eat Kale!  Heh…I actually see that bumper sticker when I’m commuting.  “Eat more Kale!” like it’s some sort of political protest.

I do have some Kale in my garden.  And some chard.  My squash were making a wonderful display of prolificness this week but, much to my ire, Mr. Woodchuck has dug a burrow directly under my squash bed and is browsing his way through the plants. 

And so another battle is pitched.  Man vs nature in a dance played out each summer season for the last 8,000 years.  Chaos want to have its way with our taming of the world.

And this is 100 feet from where Buddy hangs out in the front yard! Brazen woodchucks and bunnies and squirrels!

I guess Buddy is more of an observer than an interventionist.  A Laissez-faire border collie.

He had a big week this week.  He had surgery to remove a couple of the large lumps that were accumulating.  He’s an old dog, but there was one under his back leg that seemed to be restricting his range of motion.  He made it through the surgery fine and is now recovering.  He went out for a quick run in the woods with me yesterday and seems no worse for wear.

I’ve been trail running like a maniac.  I signed up for a trail marathon in Indianapolis July 30th – yes next Saturday.  This past Sunday I did a 20 mile trail tempo run that I was pretty proud of.  My runs have been crappy in the heat and humidity so far this summer.  So that one was a confidence builder.  Come up and join me next weekend! It’s called the Eagle Creek Trail Marathon.  There’s a half and a 10k too I think. 

One Interesting thing that is bugging me is that my pace has slowed to the point where the deer flies can catch me now.  I never had a problem with the bugs because I could stay in front of them.  But now I’ve reached an inflection point where they can catch me and it’s quite bothersome.  On a couple of these trail runs in the heat I’d have what felt like hundreds of deer flies swarming me in the woods.  50 would hold me down while the other 50 bit me.  I feel so violated.

In section one today I’m going to talk about beginner trail running – now that I’ve made it sound so sexy.  In section two we’re going to talk about understand the narratives that other people are listening to. 

Have you watched the new Tony Robbins documentary on Netflix?  It’s fascinating.  He does these live intervention things with people where you can see him reading the people.  He watches their physical cues and asks them questions, almost like a psychic would.  It’s an amazing example of how good or at least practiced he is at reading people.  It’s fascinating. 

I guess we’re lucky he’s not using those skills for anything overtly evil.  He could make these people do anything in these seminars.  It’s like the old religious camp meetings.

There are a lot of the things we recognize as familiar behavioral tricks.  Like getting people to change their state – i.e. breaking their frame.  Getting people to lean in – to buy in – a little bit at a time until they are totally susceptible to suggestions and instructions.  Asking good questions that get around the façade.  Getting past the perceived problem to the deeper self-awareness.  And then, using the power of a shared experience to reinforce behavior. 

So really it’s just another version of the group run!

On with the show!

The RunRunLive podcast is Ad Free and listener supported.  We do this by offering a membership option where members get Access To Exclusive Members Only audio

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I am currently working on an additional podcast feed so you can subscribe and the members audio will be downloaded to your listening device with no extra effort.  Like Magic!  Because my existing members asked me to do that.

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Section one –

Trail running for beginners -

Voices of reason – the conversation

Ellen Jaffe Jones

Bio: Ellen Jaffe Jones won 2 Emmys and the National Press Club Award during 18 years in TV news as an investigative reporter in St. Louis and Miami.

She is the only female in her adult family without breast cancer, and has placed in 101 5K or longer races since 2006 "just" on plants.

She placed 7th in her age group in the National Senior Games in the 1500 meters, 10th in the 400.

She is a certified personal trainer and running coach.

She is the author of 3 vegan cookbooks, "Eat Vegan on $4 a Day," "Kitchen Divided," "Paleo Vegan," and a 4th on the way, "Vegan Fitness for Mortals."

She co-hosts "Dr. Don's The Vegan Myth Busters Radio Show" on KAAA-AM.


Section two

Other peoples’ narratives -


Well my friends time to put down that fist full of raw kale and get on with your lives. You have grazed your way through to the end of Episode 4-344 of the RunRunLive Podcast.   Next week I have a cool interview with a guy who hit the slot machines for a couple million bucks, it ruined his life then he became an ultra-runner…of course.

The RunRunLive podcast is Ad Free and listener supported.  We do this by offering a membership option where members get Access To Exclusive Members Only audio

    • Member only race reports, essays and other bits just for you!
  • Exclusive Access to Individual Audio Segments from all Shows
    • Intro’s, Outro’s, Section One running tips, Section Two life hacks and Featured Interviews – all available as stand-alone MP3’s you can download and listen to at any time.

For the cost of a 5/8 ounce bottle of The Original Blue Waltz Perfume! On  you can be a member of the runrunlive support crew. 

I am currently working on an additional podcast feed so you can subscribe and the members audio will be downloaded to your listening device with no extra effort.  Like Magic!  Because my existing members asked me to do that.

I’m also going to go back through time and re-curate some of the 300+ interviews I’ve done that I particularly liked for members.

Links are in the show notes and at

Become a member


I finished my stint wearing the heart monitor for my doctor.  I ended up running out of electrodes.  If you’re working out every day and it’s summer time you take a lot of showers – and that chews up a lot of electrodes if you replace them every time. Going in to see them in August but I don’t think they saw anything. 

I think it was the heat and jet leg and just getting old!  I also think the few rounds I went with pneumonia in May and then the antibiotics that nuked my biome knocked me down a couple pegs.  Not much I can do about that.  Just put the head down and muddle through.  One of my mantras is to wake up every day and do the best I can with what I have – or as Schwarzkopf said – “You fight with the army you have.”

I do have a new project that I’m working on. And part of this project is to put it out there, share it broadly and ask for feedback. 

I’m writing a new book.  Specifically I think I will write about how to create a powerful personal narrative to drive your life.  I believe this ability to create a powerful narrative has enabled me to be successful, but more importantly to be at peace with myself and my choices.

I would like to share this keystone ability with the world.  I know there are millions of people like me who are in a place where they don’t know what to do next or don’t have a purpose or reason in life and are struggling.  By walking them through the process of documenting their past narrative, identifying the negative narratives in their life, re-writing and internalizing a powerful, positive self-narrative I can change their lives. 

The difference this time, or differences are:

  • It will be a self-help styled book with simple exercises and such to specifically walk you through the process.
  • It will be designed to be saleable.
  • It will be designed to support speaking engagements around those themes.
  • It will be designed with publishers, publicists and media as the target audience.

There you go.  It’s out there.  No turning back!

If you want to help.  I’d love to get feedback as I create this project and its content.  If any of you have ideas or people I should talk to feel free. 

I’ve always been a go-it-alone, do-it-myself guy but this time I’m aiming to break that bad habit and learn something new.

Because at the end of the day if you’re not scaring yourself you’re not growing.

Keep growing with me and I’ll be out there seeing you do it.

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -


Direct download: epi4344.mp3
Category:Running -- posted at: 3:36pm EDT

The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast Episode 4-343 – Susie Chan – Endurance Runner

 (Audio: link) [audio:]
Link epi4343.mp3

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -

Hello my friends and welcome to episode 4-343 of the RunRunLive Podcast. 

Today we talk with author UK Ultra-runner Susie Chan, and by ‘we’ I mean Alex.  Alex caught up with her and I did the editing. 

Susie’s story has all the elements that we see when we talk about the transformational power of endurance sports.  She was living her life,not in a good place physically or mentally.  She ran a race, caught the bug and then dove quickly into the deep end with ultras and stage races – reporting it all on social media (as is often the case these days). 

I love the story she tells about not having even run a marathon yet and signing up for the Marathon de Sables – Which is a 7-day ultra stage race across the Sahara.  We’ve talked to people who have run this on the show – like Ray Zahab – it’s definitely not for an amateur.  They lost two guys there one year in a sand storm. 

There you go! If you take Susie as your data point then all you have to do is wake up one morning and start running ultras.  Easy peasy. 

In section one I’m going to talk about what to do when you are struggling in a run.  Because I’ve been struggling recently.  In section two we’ll chat a bit about telling a story into the future and using that to create a different outcome. 

Happy 4th of July!  I stayed home over the long weekend here in the states. Didn’t do much. Got a couple runs in and a long bike ride.  Hung out with my family. Unclogged a couple drains in the house.  Yes, I have basic plumbing skills.  I might be the last generation of men who can do a little plumbing, a little carpentry, a little forestry and whatever else needs to be done.  That being said, the stuff we used to learn from our fathers’ you can now get from YouTube. 

Monday, on the fourth of July itself Teresa and I dug out my old canoe (see what I did there?) and took it out onto the Concord River.  We put in in Bedford and paddled up to the Old North Bridge in Concord. That’s where Minuteman National Park is.  That whole section of the river is park so it’s quite arboreal. 

It was nice.  We talked about Thoreau.  One of his books was “A Week on the Concord and Merimack Rivers” and other stuff.  Not as hard as running down the Grand Canyon but a very nice few hours in the sun. 

The RunRunLive podcast is Ad Free and listener supported.  We do this by offering a membership option where members get Access To Exclusive Members Only audio

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  • Exclusive Access to Individual Audio Segments from all Shows
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Why don’t I take the cheaters way out and instead of thinking up my own salient content to ease you into the episode proper I’ll quote that crazy old philosophe Thoreau hisself…

“It is worth the while to make a voyage up this stream, if you go no farther than Sudbury, only to see how much country there is in the rear of us : great hills, and a hundred brooks, and farmhouses, and barns, and haystacks, you never saw before, and men everywhere ; Sudbury, that is Southborough men, and Wayland, and Nine-Acre-Corner men, and Bound Rock, where four towns bound on a rock in the river, Lincoln, Wayland, Sudbury, Concord . Many waves are there agitated by the wind, keeping nature fresh, the spray blowing in your face, reeds and rushes waving ; ducks by the hundred, all uneasy in the surf, in the raw wind, just ready to rise, and now going off with a clatter and a whistling like riggers straight for Labrador, flying against the stiff gale with reefed wings, or else circling round first, with all their paddles briskly moving, just over the surf, to reconnoitre you before they leave these parts ; gulls wheeling overhead, muskrats swimming for dear life, wet and cold, with no fire to warm them by that you know of, their labored homes rising here and there like haystacks ; and countless mice and moles and winged titmice along the sunny, windy shore; cranberries tossed on the waves and heaving up on the beach, their little red skiffs beating about among the alders ; - such healthy natural tumult as proves the last day is not yet at hand.” HDT

On with the show.

Section one –

When easy runs are hard -

Voices of reason – the conversation

Susie Chan!blog/c1rpo

Hi I'm Susie and I like to run.

I have run races from 1 mile to 100 miles.

I began running quite late in life to get a bit healthier. Since stumbling over my first finish line in a race in 2010 I have gone on to run thousands of miles in training and in races.  My favourite races are multistage ultras, these are races over multiple days and miles.

Highlights of my races have included two Marathon des Sables (setting off with the elites in 2015) Thames Path 100 and Boston Marathon.

I do the odd bit of cycling and swimming too.

I'm happiest running with my friends on the trails.

Contact me for public speaking, kit chat and any questions!


  • Beyond the Ultimate's Jungle Ultra
  • Gevena Marathon 2016
  • Sierra Leone Marathon 2016
  • Pacer at London Marathon 2016
  • North Downs Way 50
  • New York Marathon 2016
  • Winter Wonderland

Section two

Telling your story out into the future -


Well my friends you decided to get up off the couch and run across the Sahara Desert to the end of Episode 4-343 of the RunRunLive Podcast. 

Hope you’re enjoying your summers.  Or your winter if you’re in the other side of the planet.  If you were on Jupiter where NASA just successfully dropped the Juno probe into orbit your summer would be 1083 days long.  And the Europeans would still take most of it off. 

I’m close to pulling the trigger on a trail marathon in Indianapolis for July 31st.  Even though I’ve been feeling less-than-awesome in my running lately I figure I can just casually run it for fun.  I don’t have an Indy Marathon yet and both my sisters live there.   We have an office there too.  I need to get out! Do something!

Then I’m going to do the Wapack Trail race.  That’s Labor Day weekend.  You should come up and do it.  It’s 18 miles on technical mountain trails.  A real hoot.  I guarantee it’s different than anything else you’ve ever run!

Then I have the Spartan Beast.  Which I’m not excited about but I’ll do it.  And finally I told coach I’d run the Portland marathon with him in October.  I did the Hood to Coast relay out there last year but I don’t think that counts as a state marathon?

So, like I said I’ve really felt like crap in my runs.  Basically since I had pneumonia in May.  I’m tired and my paces are off.  I noticed my HR spiking a bit at the end of runs.  I called my cardiologist and they asked me to wear a 24 hour monitor.  I’ve been wearing it for a couple weeks now. 

It’s a giant pain in the …  It consists of three electrodes that you stick to your chest.  One above your left breast and then another two, one under each breast.  I’d post a picture but no one needs to see that.  Oh, the horror. 

Then the three wires run down to a small pendant that you keep in your pocket or clip to your belt.  It’s like the size of a pager.  (For you millennials, pagers were texting devices before we had cell phones. In old movies from the 80’s and 90’s you’ll see doctors wearing them.)

The companion piece is an android cell phone. The pendant track smy heart and sends any weirdness to the cell phone via Bluetooth.  The cell phone then shoots that data off to the main office – where someone is watching. 

This is all well and good but I don’t think the designers had me in mind when they designed the rig.  When I’m trail running this time of year I sweat.  A lot.  I’ve managed to sweat off the electrodes in a few of my runs.  Which is unfortunate because if there is anything nefarious going on with my heart it’s going to be at the end of a run. 

I’m working with it.  I found a way to run the wires up through the neck of my shirt and clip them to my camelback for yesterday’s 2-hour sweat fest and that kept the electrodes in place for the whole outing. 

I don’t think they are seeing anything.  Which is good news and bad news.  Good news may be it’s not the heart.  Bad news is now I have to figure out what it is!

I got a couple new pair of shoes too.  I bought a new pair of trail Mizunos.  I’ve never owned a pair of mizunos.  They are basic neutral cushion shoes with an aggressive tread.  The toebox was a little tight but my foot usually wins that battle. 

I bought a pair of Hoka Challenger 2’s for the road.  I was trying to break in a pair of New Balance that I had picked up dirt cheap at the outlet store but they just weren’t working.  They were New Balances version of a Hoka-like shoe.  Light and responsive but I couldn’t get used to the heel drop.  I got the Hokas which are last year’s model for $84 and I know they work for me. Like running on clouds!

Because no matter how crappy your training is going, you can always use a new pair of shoes, right?

Susie is a great example of someone seizing control of her life. She became the captain of her ship.  We all have that capability.  No matter whether we are 20 or 60.  Whether your boat is a cloth coracle or a party yacht.  It’s all good. Thoreau in his canoe.  You and I in our dinghies. 

Grab an oar or a paddle and I’ll see you out there.

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -


Direct download: epi4343.mp3
Category:Running -- posted at: 4:37pm EDT

The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast Episode 4-342 – Matt Fitzgerald – How bad do you want it?

 (Audio: link) [audio:]
Link epi4342.mp3

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -

Hello my friends and welcome to episode 4-342 of the RunRunLive Podcast. 

Today we talk with author Matt Fitzgerald, mostly about his new book “How bad do you want it?”  You may know Matt’s name from Runner’s World, Competitor and Men’s Fitness among other publications.  His 2014 book “80/20 Running: Run Stronger and Race Faster By Training Slower” made a big splash. 

Matt and I geek out about the mental aspects of racing to your limits, both physical and psychological.

In section one I’m going to report on my lessons learned from the Boston marathon this year.  (I must be a slow learner because I keep having to learn some lessons over and over!)

In Section two I’m going to give you my takeaways from a book I read on conversation tactics.

The RunRunLive podcast is Ad Free and listener supported.  We do this by offering a membership option where members get Access To Exclusive Members Only audio

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    • Intro’s, Outro’s, Section One running tips, Section Two life hacks and Featured Interviews – all available as stand-alone MP3’s you can download and listen to at any time.

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Well my friends we’ve made it to the summer solstice.  That time that is the official, astronomical beginning of summer.  The longest day up here in the northern hemisphere where the earth wobbles precariously, catches itself and begins the long, drunken careen back to winter.  If you’re in the southern hemisphere you can just switch all the words with their opposites. 

For all the pagan sun worshippers out there you need to build some stone circles and do a little dance.  Maybe sacrifice something – like a six pack of lager. 

If you don’t believe the earth is round, well there’s no hope for you. 

If you want to have some fun ask random people basic astronomy questions, like “Does the earth orbit the sun or does the sun orbit the earth?”  Or “Name the planets?”  Then sit back and be surprised with the answers.

It is getting warm up in my neck of the woods.  The deer flies are out. I’m adjusting to it as always.  For everything there is a season – Turn, Turn, Turn.  Mostly I’m just trying to get all my runs in and trying to keep all the balls in the air.

I’m doing a lot of trail running and some mountain biking.  It’s all good. 

Friday I hit the ski area next to my house and did some reps on my bike up the tubing hill.  It’s just about right for me to get to max effort at the top without blowing up or falling over. 

Sunday I did 2 hours in the trails before going to have a father’s Day lunch with my Mom and brother.

I’m a bit tired today.  We had one of those summer thunderstorm fronts role through at 3 in the morning.  Thunder and lightning cause Buddy the old wonder dog a lot of personal stress and he needs to share his unhappiness with me. 

Sometimes he goes and hides in the bath tub.  Sometimes we’ll open the basement door and let him hide down there.  But usually he just wanders the house being miserable like last night.

It’s summer.  What are you going to do?  I don’t mind running in the heat as long as I’m acclimated and kitted out for it.  I love running in a warm summer rain. 

I was down in Atlanta last week all week.  It was a series of all-hands type meetings where the whole company comes in.  I was on stage for some of it.  It’s a tiring week.  There’s the travel, the preparation, getting up to get my workouts in, being engaged all day and then socializing at night. 

I did manage to get enough sleep to execute.  I did manage to get some sort of workouts in in the morning.  It was super-hot in Atlanta.  High 90’s with humidity.  Even in the morning I was soaked from running outside.  I told them the only thing keeping me from bursting into flames was the humidity. 

We were down near Georgia Tech this time so I got to explore the tech campus on one run – which was fun.  I also got to go to a Braves game one night.

Matt and I are going to talk a lot about mental training today in the interview.  Your mental engagement in the training and racing is as important as the physical engagement.  You can’t be successful unless you have both. 

It’s that perfect combination of mental engagement and physical capabilities that makes you successful.  I think you can draw a parallel to your career.  If you hate what you’re doing and are not mentally engaged it doesn’t matter how good you are at it, you will still struggle.  The inverse is true as well.  If you are mentally engaged but don’t know what you’re doing it won’t work either. 

One of the telltale signs that you aren’t mentally engaged in what you’re doing is whether the doing of it saps your energy or energizes you.  If you are fully, mentally bought in to a job you will have inexhaustible energy to pour into it.  Doing the work will give you energy. 

If you’re in a position where doing the work exhausts you while you are doing the work then either the work or the people you’re working with are not for you.  There is a disconnect there.  Pay attention and see which way your energy meter runs when you’re doing the work.

When I was jogging around the Tech campus I was listening to DirtDawg talk about the difference between a job, a career and a calling.  One of those differences is in the way your energy flows.

On with the show.

Section one –

Lessons Learned from the Boston Marathon -

Voices of reason – the conversation

Matt Fitzgerald

“The mind is the athlete.”

—Bryce Courtenay

Matt Fitzgerald is an acclaimed endurance sports writer and authority. His many previous books include the best-selling Racing Weight; RUN: The Mind-Body Method of Running by Feel; Brain Training for Runners; and Diet Cults. His book Iron War was long-listed for the 2012 William Hill Sports Book of the Year. Matt is a regular contributor to Men’s Fitness, Men’s Health, Outside, Runner’s World, Bicycling, Running Times, Women’s Running, and other sports and fitness publications. He lives and trains in California

Matt Fitzgerald is an award-winning endurance sports journalist and bestselling author of more than 20 books on running, triathlon, fitness, nutrition, and weight loss, including How Bad Do You Want It? and 80/20 Running. He contributes regularly to magazines and websites such as Women's Running and An experienced running and triathlon coach and certified sports nutritionist, Matt serves as a Training Intelligence Specialist for PEAR Sports and as a coach for Team Iron Cowboy.

Section two

Conversation Tactics -


Well my friends you were able to stay mentally strong, and I know it was hard, to the end of Episode 4-342 of the RunRunLive Podcast.  Happy 9-year anniversary! Happy Father’s Day. 

Does everyone have their summer plans?  Are you ready?  Have you filled your kiddie pool in the backyard up with ice?

4th of July in the States is on a Monday this year.  I don’t have any plans.  I guess I’ll have to venture down and see if my Cape house is still standing.  Maybe I’ll recreate Thoreau’s walk up the outer Cape to Provincetown?  That might be epic. 

We’re coming into that time where the Europeans take the whole summer off.  Work tends to slow down as people head out to vacation. 

I’ll keep it short today because I don’t have a lot to say. 

Please consider becoming a member – It’s how I justify the time and money it takes to pull off this podcast.  Also if you are looking at a Fall race you might want to check out my book MarathonBQ.  If you want to get faster, or want to try some speedwork, this is the book where I lay out my speedwork secrets that I used to take 40 minutes off my marathon time and qualify for Boston.  It’s on Amazon Kindle and also in Audio on Audible.  Links in the show notes and on my website.

Coming into last week’s trip to Atlanta I had a couple amusing challenges. 

I was out trail running with Ryan, caught a toe and did the classic tuck and roll to keep from face planting.  But when I stopped rolling I was right in the middle of a giant poison ivy patch.  I’m super allergic to poison ivy.  It was a hot day.  We were miles from the trail head.  I had to get on a plane later in the day.

When we were coming back we passed a garage where I guy was hosing out school buses with a high-pressure water hose.  So, we went over and got him to hose me down. It was very refreshing!  I scrubbed off as well as I could when I got home before heading for the airport. 

Then I’m sitting in the airport and a crown comes loose on one of my molars. 

So here I am, getting ready to go to Atlanta to be on stage and engaged.  I’m losing a tooth and there’s a good chance I’m going to swell up into a giant, puss-y rash in front of the whole company!

Thankfully the bus wash and quick shower were able to mitigate an uncontrolled dermatological explosion.  I got a couple itchy bits but nothing compared to what could have been.  Dodged a bullet there.  My tooth stayed put until Wednesday when I found it in a piece of pizza at lunch, but it didn’t hurt and I was able to get it patched up when I got back. 

See?  Things never turn out as bad as we imagine they will!

I’ll see you out there.

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks -


Direct download: epi4342.mp3
Category:Running -- posted at: 12:11pm EDT





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