As a sports fanatic, I love running because it only takes a pair of running shoes and a bit of motivation to get started. You don't need any equipment, a special field, a particular time of day, or a team of people. Given the low barrier to entry, the hard part can be finding time to balance work, family, friends, eating, sleeping AND running. Consistency is the key, but cramming everything into 24 hours is no small feat — even Superman would struggle.
How long have you been running?
I’ve been running around baseball diamonds and ultimate Frisbee fields since I was a kid, but distance running I’ve only been doing for about a year. In 2015, I completed the Mark Fulton 8000 Meter Challenge, but barely. Reflecting on the event, I decided that only doing training hikes for that event wasn’t going to be enough and that I needed to add running or cycling to my training regimen. I mentioned this to the organizer of Zappos’ 8,000-meter event, to which he said, “Ragnar is six weeks away; you’re going to be on my team so start running.” So off I went, and I’ve been running ever since.
Your go-to running shoes are what?
Right now, I’m loving the Brooks Launch 3. They hug my heel and midfoot, but I have a good amount of room in the toe box and just the right amount of cushion.
What's your favorite distance to run?
Somewhere between a 5K and 10K, but I haven’t run a half-marathon or anything longer yet.
Do you have a preferred time of day to run?
Living in Vegas, I’ll say any time of day that’s not more than 100 degrees! I like running after 9 p.m.— it’s a great way to clear my head of the days’ events, relaxing me and making it easier to fall asleep.
Where is your ideal place to run?
I’ve mostly only run in Vegas, but in 2017 I want to start combining running and travel.
What's the best piece of running advice you've received?
I’ve had a lot of great support and guidance from coworkers over the last year, so it’s hard to choose. The best ones, though, are:
1) The first few miles are always the worst (unless you’re running a marathon and then it’s the last 6.2 miles!), so find the mental toughness to push through those moments.
2) Buy shoes that are a half-size bigger than you need so that your toenails don’t fall off.
3) Dress for 20 degrees warmer than what it is outside — so if it’s 60 degrees, dress like it’s 80 degrees
Do you have a favorite pre and post-race/run meal?
Pre-run: Just a banana if it’s close to run time and I haven’t eaten in a while, or pasta if I’m able to eat a couple of hours ahead of time. Post-run: It could be pizza, a burger or anything I find in my fridge or pantry.
What is on your running playlist?
Lots of ‘90s alternative and some of today’s top 40 hits. Stone Temple Pilots, Weezer, Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, Smashing Pumpkins, Goo Goo Dolls … the ‘90s were amazing!
What tips do you have for staying motivated, or when you're just not feeling it?
Like most things that are good for you and that you don’t want to do, know that you’ll always feel better afterward … and be glad you did! If self-motivation is an issue, grab a friend, your significant other or join a running group to help keep you accountable.
Do you have a favorite race?
I haven’t run a lot of races yet, but I think it’ll be hard to top the Ragnar Relay series of races. I just completed my second Las Vegas Ragnar, and I absolutely love it. The event covers approximately 200 miles in 32-36 hours with a team of 12 people. Each person runs between 12 and 26 miles over the course of three legs. It’s a great way to bond with teammates and see parts of the city you likely don’t see very often.
What's your most memorable running moment?
It’s got to be last year’s Ragnar event. I had never run more than a few miles, and I was supposed to run nearly 14 miles over my three legs; I was SO nervous! The 11 others on the team, and especially the five other people in my van were super supportive and encouraging. When I finished my first 5.5 miles, I was greeted with cheers and big hugs and the nerves melted away. I completed my other two legs a lot faster than my anticipated pace time. The support the team gave me during that event motivated me to keep running in 2016.