Last week, I opened an athlete’s training log to a harrowing entry. It was bad, with two of the most scary symptoms for an athlete: persistent tiredness on uphills and a heavy, foggy brain. What was it? Gosh, hopefully not the start of overtraining syndrome, or mono, or some severe illness. We couldn’t just hope it would pass any longer.
One of the more disconcerting realities of the human condition is that even the most uplifting, joyous daily moments have a tendency to become mundane over time. Relationships can start at a rolling boil before going to a simmer and cooling to room temperature. Your favorite meal may become a chore if you eat it every day. And if you aren’t safe, your passion can become another box to check on a to-do list.
When I was 11 years old, I did my first few running races. They were the types of local events where a county commissioner would come out to the start, call everyone crazy for running when not being actively chased, and fire a gun into the air. Given where I grew up, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was real gun and an unlucky goose was served as the post-race meal.
You’re probably aware of the dreaded “gray area” of running training. Traditionally, the gray area is that spooky zone where you’re not going hard enough to elicit the desired adaptations, and not going easy enough to build aerobic endurance and recover. It’s where the crap hits the fan, the cats and dogs live together, the mass hysteria unfolds.
There is a man in my neighborhood in Boulder who walks his two golden labs every morning. No big deal, right? That’s just good dog ownership. But here’s the thing that makes him the talk of the cul de sac: no matter what, he’s wearing shorts. Whether it’s rain or shine or snow or probably zombie apocalypse, he lets his shins breathe, as if he’s a nudist from ankle to knee.
There’s often a debate in sports about what constitutes an “elite” athlete. In football, it’s a meme to talk about whether Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco is elite. In running, there are hundreds of comment threads dedicated to elite versus sub-elite versus non-elite times. I imagine most coaches get tons of emails from athletes with a disclaimer at the start: “I am not an elite athlete.”
If you’ve watched the Tour de France in the last decade, you’ve probably noticed some riders staring at their handlebars on the biggest climbs, looking at a little screen as if they are in the middle of a Netflix binge. Most of the time, they are looking at the readout on their power meters.
As with most things baby related, it’s hard to know what you need until the little one has arrived. But trail runners will know at least one thing for certain: They’ll want a stroller they can run with. Your choice of ride can be the difference between a blissful jaunt with your beloved and a … Continue reading "All-Terrain Strollers"
Almost there! I had battled sore legs and cramping calves for 61 miles and nearly 12,000 feet of vertical gain to make it here: the last stretch of the Miwok 100K. The steep, forested trail down to Stinson Beach grew dim as the sun set over the Pacific. Dark shadows emerged, covering loose leaves and … Continue reading "Second Chance"
I’ve been a trail runner for over 15 years, and a yoga practitioner for a decade. So when I decided to become a yoga instructor, naturally, I gravitated toward teaching runners, who are often nervous about attending their first class. They say things like, “Oh, I am so bad at yoga, I can’t even touch … Continue reading "Yoga and Balance"
- Trail Tips
We are seeking a qualified Assistant Editor with strong journalism and writing skills and a broad knowledge of (and passion for) trail running. Applicants should also possess a thorough understanding of the outdoor community and marketplace. The position requires location in the town of Carbondale, located on Colorado’s Western Slope. Job responsibilities include assisting the … Continue reading "We Are Hiring!"
The Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run is always exciting, but 2017 proved to be especially dramatic. Thick snow sent runners sliding down hillsides, mud bogs stole shoes and 100-degree heat added high drama to this historic race. Here are six unforgettable moments. Defending female champ, Kaci Lickteig, digs out of the pain cave “Last year … Continue reading "Breakouts, Breakdowns and Bib Offerings at the 2017 Western States 100"
With the lead up to the 2017 Western States 100 Endurance Run reaching a fever pitch, the timing of the release of Lighting the Fire: Wrong Turns, by 9MindAsylum, about current ultrarunning star Jim Walmsley couldn’t be better. Walmsley, of course, is famous for his wrong turn at mile 92—while on a blistering course-record pace—of the … Continue reading "New Film Follows Jim Walmsley’s Life from the Air Force to Last Year’s Infamous Wrong Turn at Western States"
As Mina Guli walked deep into the night along the Murray River in Australia, excruciating pain shooting through her calves and achilles, she began to wonder if she had made a mistake with her ambitious expedition for running for clean-water awareness. Running the slippery trails of the Amazon the week prior had wreaked havoc on … Continue reading "Running for Clean-Water Awareness"
Want to spend a few days in the field photographing some of the sport’s top trail runners? Trail Runner’s three-day course (August 8-11, 2017) in Revelstoke, British Columbia, will give you the opportunity to learn from trail-running’s top photographers, and have the opportunity to publish your photos in Trail Runner. Learn more and enroll in the camp …