Mr. Versatility - Page 2
Do you have a favorite race or distance?
I really do like it all but if I had to pick one I think cross country is still my favorite race discipline. It's the thrill of the fast pace and intensity of the field all around you that you don't get in a trail race that makes it exciting.
Had one, retired, although I do work as a footwear buyer for the Footzone in Bend right now. I focus on my running. I also coach a little on the side, and the rest of my time is filled with being a dad to two now.
Goals and races for 2013?
Lots. A couple good 50-milers. Continue to work on versatility by trying out for four different U.S. national teams—cross country, track, mountain running and 100K. Coming up next is XC in February and a three-day stage race in Chile, El Cruce Columbia. I'll focus on shorter distances in the spring and move to longer distances again in the fall most likely.
How do you balance family, work, training and racing?
With another kid now it is getting progressively more difficult. I do the best I can with getting it all in and, I'm not proud of it, but there are times when I'm lacking a full commitment to each of them.
To what do you attribute your ability to excel at a such a wide range of distances?
I've got a strong will and faith that the gifts I was given will allow me to reach my goals. It's a process and I'm willing to take the time to excel if I really believe I can do it. I reach a lot of my goals by simply outlasting and allowing my body to absorb the stress that I put on it. I'm certainly very blessed in what I've been able to accomplish and don't take it for granted.
What is the most common technique mistake you see in trail runners?
The biggest thing that I see is overstriding. A lot of runners can get away with this on the road with very repetitive strides. On a trail, though, overstriding doesn't allow you to react to the terrain, so it really becomes inefficient on more technical trails, not to mention increases the risk of twisting ankles and knees with a heel strike that is way out in front of your body. Shorten your stride on trails and try to get that foot to land under your center of mass.
What advice would you give to runners trying to improve their trail-race times?
Work on your weaknesses but don't neglect your strengths. Running hills has had the biggest impact on my long-distance fitness and staying strong toward the end of longer races. This can have a significant impact on times if you can hold your pace through to the finish.