The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast Episode 4-426 – Steve Pero and the Rim to Rim to Rim

 (Audio: link) audio:]
Link epi4426.mp3

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

Hello and welcome to episode 4-426 of the RunRunLive Podcast.   Here we are celebrating a leap year February.  That means you and I get an extra day to do the things we love! 

Good stuff, right?

Today we have a good show for you.  I corralled one of my local ultra-running friends Steve to give me some coaching on running the Rim-to-Rim in the Grand Canyon.  

Coincidently, if you want some more around the history of running the Grand Canyon, you can check out a series that Davey Crockett did on the Ultra-running History Podcast all about the Grand Canyon and the Rim to Rim runners of the last 100 years. 

I went to the Grand Canyon for the first time int 2015 and I was so impressed that I returned in 2016 and ran down to Phantom Ranch and back with my daughter.  I’m planning on going back in September of this year and doing a 2-day Rim-to-Rim-to-Rim.  Meaning, we are going to run south to north on day one, stay over on the north side then come back on day 2. 

If that sounds like fun to you, you are more than welcome to join.  You’ll have to manage your own logistics.  Effort-wise it’s the equivalent of a hilly 50K I’d say, unless the weather goes sideways. 

In section one we will try to answer the question of at what age do the wheels fall off your athletic pursuits?  In section two we’ll talk about sticks. 

On the topic of aging there are a number of people trying to figure out why we can’t all live to 150 or even 200 years old.  Of course there have probably always been these people, but the modern ones are trying to leverage science. 

I was listening to one of these and it turns out they are very big on cold therapy, i.e. plunging yourself into cold water as a way to shock your body into a positive stress response.  Meaning, these things that stress us shake our genomes out of their comfortable slumber and get them awake and cracking, pushing out good youthful stuff that makes us stronger. 

And you laughed at me with my ice baths. 

Since we last talked I have transitioned into some more intense, race specific training for Boston.  Last weekend coach started me on some hill repeats.   I was pretty proud of myself getting up Friday morning with the sunrise and 10 degrees and knocking them out!  The sun is coming up early enough now to run in the morning. 

This is another one of those old-guy tricks.  Instead of doing speedwork on the track you do tempo on the hill.  It has the same positive effect on your footspeed, turnover, form and strength without as much pounding. 

Last Sunday I did a 2:30 with surges and a fast finish.  Tomorrow I’ll do 2:45. This will get me close to 30k.   Well into the mid 40’s of miles per week. 

I still get out with Ollie the Collie in the woods for some of my mid-week runs.  He is still a maniac.  He has added to his annoying habit of lying in wait on the trail and pouncing on me.  He likes to chose good ground to do this from.  Like when I’m struggling up a muddy knoll or trying to navigate a slippery rock bridge over a stream.

He’ll lie in a crouch and spring at me.  If I’m not paying attention I may receive essentially a 45 pound punch to the family jewels. 

His new trick is right after this assault he’ll look around for the nearest stick to grab and run with it, growling.  The challenge with this is sometimes he grabs small sticks and sometimes he grabs 6-foot long branches. He then runs in and around me with his payload, joyously growling and swinging his bit of tree. 

Try as I may, inevitable he trips me and I get familiar with the frozen or muddy ground.  On time last week he literally stuck a branch between my legs as I was running, like when the Italian rider stuck the rod into the spokes of Dave’s bike in the movie ‘Breaking Away’

What am I talking about?  Well it’s this coming of age movie from 1979 about a townie kid in Indiana who dreams of riding with the Europeans.  It has a great supporting cast with a young Dennis Quaid and Daniel Stern from the Home Alone franchise and the best use of Rossini’s Barber of Seville ever.

In this pivotal scene he’s riding with his heroes, the Italian team, and they are mean to him, eventually sticking something in his spokes and crashing his bike.  It’s great movie. Go watch it kids. 

That’s what Ollie tried to do to me.  Didn’t work.  My legs were tougher than the stick. 

He’s a pain, but it’s only because he has so much love, so much Joie de vivre, and I’m ok with that.

Because, If you’re going to live, live with zest!

On with the Show!

About Zero

ZERO — The End of Prostate Cancer is the leading national nonprofit with the mission to end prostate cancer. ZERO advances research, improves the lives of men and families, and inspires action.

Link to my ZERO page: (for Donations)

I’ll remind you that the RunRunLive podcast is ad free and listener supported.  What does that mean? It means you don’t have to listen to me trying to sound sincere about or Audible.. (although, fyi, my MarathonBQ book is on audible) We do have a membership option where you can become a member and as a special thank you, you will get access to member’s only audio. There are book reviews, odd philosophical thoughts, zombie stories and I curate old episodes for you to listen to.  I recently added that guy who cut off is foot so he could keep training and my first call with Geoff Galloway.   “Curated” means I add some introductory comments and edit them up a bit.  So anyhow – become a member so I can keep paying my bills.


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Section one – At what age do the wheels fall off? -

Voices of reason – the conversation

Steve Pero

Attached is a fittingly picture from one of our Grand Canyon runs. Don't look much different these days 

I also included a pic of me running a trail race in 1999.


Not sure about a bio...feel free to edit below as much as you want.


Born in Cambridge, Ma.

Worked as a Mechanical designer at Polaroid for 32 years, then worked at several other places until I decided to retire in 2017 at age 66.


Living in Somerville growing up I got into bodybuilding at a gym. The trainer had me run around the building as a warm up...I liked running so much that I quit the gym and started running more. That was 1975. I saw Bill Rodgers run across the finish line of the Boston Marathon and I was hooked. Started training for Boston and qualified and ran my first in 1980. After 13 Boston's and hundreds of road races, I ran a trail race and was hooked. Ran my first ultra in 1997, won it and became an ultrarunners and now 23 years later, I'm still at it.


I live in rural SW NH with my wife, a bunch of chickens, three very pregnant dairy goats, a wonderful dog and cat.

Section two – Pile o sticks  –


Well, my friends, we have run down into the canyon of our youth and up the other side of our age and wisdom to the happy elysian fields of Episode 4-426 of the RunRunLive Podcast.

Like I said in the intro I’m starting to get serious in my training for Boston.  I’m not racing for a time but I am training as if, because it is the Boston marathon and it deserves respect. 

Thank you to all my friends who have contributed to my ZERO for Prostate cancer campaign for Boston.  I’m getting close to my goal and you, yes you, can push me through the finish!  Links in the show notes.

Also big thanks to the small and dedicated circle of RunRunLive sponsors who pay our bills.  I asked them “What can I do to thank you?” and they simply tell me “Keep doing the podcast.” So, with the bar set at an achievable level onwards we strive!

I’m staying healthy for the most part.  My weight is still a couple pounds over race weight but it’s starting to drop with a slight tweak in diet and the bigger weeks.  It will all come together.  It always does. My Achilles and Plantar Fasciitis and that chronic tendonitis in my butt all speak up once in awhile but that’s just the cost of doing business.  I keep the fires tamped down with judicious rehab and sensible training. 

I’m starting to travel more with the new job which is good news for you.  There is nothing that feeds my creativity more than being trapped in an airplane for 4 or 5 hours.  Also gives me more exposure to the carnival of weirdness that is our modern world.

I rented the movie Midway last week.  It’s really good if you are a history buff and like war movies.  (Which is a good way of saying your wife won’t watch it with you.)  It’s a story that’s been told before but with modern special effects they can put your right in the pilot seat of a Dauntless dive bomber. 

And who, do you think, plays Admiral Halsey?  That’s right a much older Dennis Quaid.  See?  It all ties together.  

I also found the first episode of American Gods was available to watch for free.  Love that Neal Gaimon book.  Worth a watch.

Genes, hat

I’m going to put on my shoes with the chewed laces, go throw Ollie in the truck and drive over to get a haircut and do some grocery shopping now.  While I was writing this, I forgot the latch the door to the master bedroom and the two-tone terror stole my Patriots hat and chewed a hole in it.  Think that’s a bad omen for Brady and Bellichick?

This just in – I received the results from the DNA kit my kids got me for Christmas.  A bit disappointing.  Not a drop of Ashkenazi, Sicilian or Moorish blood.  Just your run-of-the-mill Scotch-Irish with a handful of Norman and a small dash of continental French from my Quebecois Grandmum. 

Celtic thru and thru.  Explains why good beer is like heroin for me and my love of stone walls and roaring fires.  I suppose that’s where I get my endurance.  My folk were chased out of Africa and didn’t stop running ‘til they hit the North Atlantic then sat around in pubs and complained about it.  

Thank you all for your friendship and time.

Hope you got your money’s worth. 

Got a long run in the morning and then I’m off to Dallas for a couple days. 

Keep fighting the good fight and…

I’ll see you out there. 

(Outro bumper)

And the music continues with #4 from Brian Scheff, the Rock Opera by The Nays, “BJ’s Prophecy”, enjoy.

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


Rachel ->

Coach Jeff ->


Direct download: epi4426.mp3
Category:Running -- posted at: 7:33pm EDT





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