Primary activity: Trail Running
Location: Tigard, OR
Introvert or extrovert: Extrovert
Caffeinated or decaf: Caffeinated
What is your primary mixed terrain activity or passion?
My primary activity is trail running. Even when I run from my house I incorporate at least one section of dirt trail. All of the events I’ve done have been on trails. I also love to cycle and have done some good distance events on the road like Tour of the Unknown Coast in Humboldt County, California, as well as a private annual ride to celebrate a friend’s birthday with a small group affectionately know to us as RAMRAF, the name is a spoof of Ride Around Rainier in One Day (RAMROD). I race Cyclocross when my trail race season doesn’t over lap the fall start of ‘Cross season.
I mountain bike too. Mostly as a cross training exercise. It’s also fun to do with my two sons and takes me back to my BMX days.
What impact does nature, and your movement in nature, have on your wellbeing?
During recovery and counseling from a wrestling match with alcohol I read about different ways to manage stress. I found an article that talked about “Forest Bathing”. The oxygen rich atmosphere, coupled with the movement of your body in nature and the positive effects it has. Also, how “Awe” connects you to the world and the benefit of being awe-struck by nature. Giant trees, the Grand Canyon, Columbia River Gorge. All of this sets me straight.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I’d love to say that I wake up each day without an alarm but that just isn’t so… I set my alarm for 4:50 am. Get up and ready. I get out the door within the hour for a run, usually 5-8 miles. On some days 10+ if I commute to work on foot. Non-running days I start with Wim Hof breathing exercises and a series of yoga moves to aid in recovery from the miles. I sauna for 30 minutes 3-5 days a week and take a cold shower. I’m working on a cold plunge tank set up. I get to my auto repair business by 8 and join my team to do our best each day to partner with our customers by developing high value relationships and consultation to provide them with reliable transportation and manage the cost. If I have plans with my lady or my boys, sometimes I’ll run during my lunch so that my running minimally affects my time with the people in my life that I love.
What is one habit of yours that makes you a better athlete?
Wim Hof breathing, meditation and mindset. I look for a reason to keep going, never a reason I should quit.
How do you measure success?
Success to me is very personal. I have several parts of my life that I grade my success. As a parent, to be a good example. As a partner, to be thoughtful and appreciative. As a business owner, to operate with honesty and integrity. As an employer, to be a worthy leader. As an athlete, to be grateful for the ability. For the happiness each small gain brings.
Describe an adventure you undertook that had an impact on your life.
I went for a social run with a group of guys that were Ironman triathletes. At the time the farthest I had run was a half marathon. We were going to go about 10 miles and I was super intimidated. After setting out I settled in with the host of the group who is now my close friend, Glen Clemans. He asked me a few questions about how much I was running at the time and suggested that I join them at a 50K race in February.
The Hagg Lake Mud Runs 50K. I asked him how far that was! He explained that it was 10 times a 5K making it 31.2 miles! We discussed my mileage and he gave me some pointers. I ran the next 2 1/2 months with purpose and showed up to toe the line on that cold February day in 2014. After almost 7 1/2 hours I crawled in across the finish. All I wanted was the next thing after that. How far can I go? How high can I climb?
This year I am running The Grand Slam of Ultrarunning. Western States 100, Vermont 100, Leadville 100, and Wasatch 100 all in a single season. In a couple years for my 50th I am considering Bigfoot 200.
What apps, gear, or training tools can’t you live without?
Really could live without most things except for my Hokas. I like my Garmin Fenix and my Sauna too though.
What is one struggle you’ve had and how did you overcome it?
In my 30’s I was 80 lbs overweight, had high blood pressure, was super stressed out and unhappy. I went to my doctor one day for something and he started writing me a prescription for blood pressure meds. I asked how long I had to be on them and he said, “forever”. I said there’s got to be another way, to which he said, “Well. I guess you could exercise.”
It pissed me off but motivated me to prove I could do it. I just didn’t stop!
What life lessons did you take from the experience?
Mindset over all else will create reality. If you can dream it or picture it, you can manifest it in your life.
What habits have you developed to help manage your wellbeing and mental health?
Visualizations. I picture myself getting up from bed and out the door with ease. I welcome the weather, no matter what it’s doing outside and I focus on gratitude. I have never come back from a run and wished I hadn’t set out on it.
What habits do you wish to develop to help manage your wellbeing and mental health?
I need to remember how far I have come when I have a hard day or a set back in training. It’s all just a thing and this too shall pass.
Have you recognized triggers you now avoid to manage your mental health?
Yes indeed! It’s best if I count to 20 when I feel the urge to slip. That and a round of breathing!
What advice do you have for someone in a similar experience as you?
Keep going. One foot in front of the other. Your efforts are inspiring someone else to follow you and change their life.
What nutritional camp do you subscribe to, if any?
I like to eat! I am around 90% plant based right now.
What are your responsibilities/interests outside of training?
I have steep goals professionally as well. I am learning to surround myself with the right people to see my vision through and lift everyone at the same time. I seek harmony in my relationships especially with Triana. It’s only fair to ask so much of your partner. You have to give back or it throws off the harmony. My boys are my world. Any example I can provide, it’s the least I can do to help them find their passion and live happy lives.
When and where are you happiest?
My happy place is a little spot on the Sea of Cortez in Southern Baja Mexico. Its an off-grid slice of heaven. I dream about hosting trail running/yoga retreats from here one day! Often I focus my mind on the view from a mountain there when I meditate.