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Run to the Top Podcast | The Ultimate Guide to Running

Running podcast to motivate & help runners of every level run their best. Coach Claire Bartholic interviews athletes, coaches, scientists, psychologists, nutritionists, & everyday runners with inspiring stories.
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Now displaying: 2020
Aug 10, 2020

What is running biomechanics? How improving your mechanics can help improve your running performance and reduce susceptibility to injury? Find out in today's podcast from Coach Claire.

Aug 7, 2020

What the running community thinks about participating in 2020 races such as London Marathon? In today's episode, Coach Michael talks about the email responses he received on this topic and the reasons runners gave on why they want to run or not to run a race.

Aug 6, 2020

In this episode, Coach Dylan interviews Coach Ruairi about his latest race experience and then both talk about their race plans during this pandemic. Listen now!

Aug 5, 2020

‘Rona Racing: Why Matthew Hammersmith Is Still Holding Races

 

This episode is sure to spark controversy. Despite the coronavirus, some small races are still happening, including the “Carolina ‘Rona Reaper” in Greenville, South Carolina. Some runners are relieved to be racing again; others are angry and think holding races right now is irresponsible. Race director for the event, Matthew Hammersmith, answers Coach Claire’s questions on how events like this are even legal and possible, addresses the risks participants take when they sign up for a race, and talks about what his organization is doing to minimize those risks. Listen in and see if you would be willing to risk racing in person during the pandemic.

Matt Hammersmith founded Upstate Ultras in 2014 and serves as the race director. He’s a lifelong runner who kicked off his career by hosting a running series (now known as the Knock on Wood Ultra Festival) as a way of meeting runners. He describes the event as “poorly organized” and “chaos,” but the results were “utterly fantastic” and he has since dedicated his career to coaching athletes and hosting races of all distances and surfaces.

Matt was born in Ohio, raised in Indiana, and found his long distance running path while competing at Eastern Michigan University. He started running at age 14 and is still going. Matt’s personal bests range from running the 400 in 51.6, the mile in 4:08.17, the marathon in 2:31, and 100 miles in 17:48. 

Matt coaches about 40+ youth athletes every year and about 40+ adult runners throughout the country. His organization has over 20 events on the calendar including kids’ races (always free), trail races, 5K beer races, some gimmick fun races, and of course some epic mountain ultra races! His events are cost effective and always have a charity component. He is very proud of some of the big impacts his events have had over the years.

Matt has always been impressed by those who want to improve personal fitness and overall well being through physical fitness and nutritional awareness. An overall athlete and fitness guru, Matt’s competed at the local, state, and national level in sports like cross country, track and field, wrestling, football, and basketball. His passion and intensity is summed up quite perfectly here: “I have seen the outer limits of the human body and there is no better feeling when your body, mind, heart, and soul are connecting on every cylinder and you transform your image into something that you have always wanted.”

Matt’s motivation comes from wanting to offer opportunity and challenge. He enjoys watching overwhelming accomplishments, especially since he knows from experience that most will fail in a spectacular fashion. But ultra/trail running is ultimately not about the finish line; it’s about the growth through the struggle, which should be good enough for anyone. 

Questions Matthew is asked:

        

3:03 On your bio on the Without Limits website, it says you are a life-long runner and fitness guru.  Can you tell us a little bit about how you fell in love with running and eventually became a coach?

 

4:27 How was your progression from going from running 2 miles to running a 50K or 100 miles? Did you really just get an invitation for a 50K and you were like, “Sure, why not?”

 

5:18 How did you start getting into race directing?  

 

6:31 Can you talk about some of the events that you organize?

 

7:35 With the pandemic, most running races around the world have been canceled and runners and race directors have had to make massive changes, and I wanted to talk to you about that. You decided to go ahead with your  "Carolina Reaper," which this year was called the "Carolina Rona Reaper."  Can you talk about the decision to go ahead and what safety measures you had in place?

 

9:31 I would love to get into the details of the safety measures you have in place. So for the Rona Reaper race, how did you actually do it? What do the safety measures actually look like?

 

11:06 Were runners wearing masks during the race?

 

12: 01 What’s your advice if somebody did want to sign up for one of these races? How do you pass somebody at a socially safe distance?

 

13:01 It's my understanding that the governor of SC issued an executive order prohibiting large groups, but it's up to local law enforcement officials to enforce that if they choose.  How did you address this issue?  Did you work with local law enforcement while organizing your event?

 

14:13 How do you address those who might be critical to hosting events like this during the pandemic, especially as cases are rising?

 

15:23 What about the next races coming up? Any particular challenges with those?

 

16:24 I’ve seen a lot of thumbs up for what you’re doing. What are some of the people who have attended your events or wanted to attend your events, what kind of reaction are you getting from them?

 

17:12 I would imagine if you were positive for COVID, it would be pretty hard to run a 30-mile or a 30-hour race?

 

17:57 What do you think is the future for racing in general? All of the majors have been canceled, the major marathons, with the exception of London. Probably by the time this airs, London will finally kick the bucket. What do you see as the future of racing?

 

21:39 Are there any silver linings or things that you have learned from this whole experience that you think will help you put on better races in the future?

 

26:03 I’d love to talk a little bit more about virtual races. Obviously, for a lot of people, that is the only option, and it’s harder obviously mentally to train for a virtual race. It’s not the same dopamine rush as it is having a real in-person event. How would you as a coach coach somebody who is training for a virtual event, or somebody who is just not on board with virtual but needs that carrot?

 

29:16 How do you feel about virtual racing? With technology there are a few things happening that some companies are doing to make it a little more interactive and make it feel like you’re racing somebody else. Have you seen any of these new technologies?

 

32:13 What is up next for you and Upstate Ultras?



Questions I ask everyone:

 

33:22 If you could go back and talk to yourself when you first started running, what advice would you give yourself?

 

34:06 What is the greatest gift that running has given you?

 

35:34 Where can listeners connect with you?



Quotes by Matthew:

 

“Once I knew I wanted to start coaching and I wanted to meet some runners, I’m like, ‘Well, you know what? The best way to meet runners is to put on a race.’”

 

“Everything in life has a risk. We did everything that we possibly could to minimize the amount of risk that I thought was basically attainable for us as a race organization, but you’re going to have risk whether it’s endurance running or walking down the street or driving your car to Target. There’s always a risk.”

 

“We just focused on what can we do for the community right now, and putting on a virtual race is a great way.”



Take a Listen on Your Next Run

Want more awesome interviews and advice? Subscribe to our iTunes channel

Mentioned in this podcast: 

 

UpstateUltra@gmail.com

Without Limits

Go-Green Events

Upstate Ultra

Runners Connect Winner's Circle Facebook Community

RunnersConnect Facebook page

claire@runnersconnect.net

 

Follow Matthew on:

Facebook - Without Limits

Facebook - SCUMRunner

Instagram - Upstate Ultra



We really hope you’ve enjoyed this episode of Run to the Top.

The best way you can show your support of the show is to share this podcast with your family and friends and share it on your Facebook, Twitter, or any other social media channel you use.

The more people who know about the podcast and download the episodes, the more I can reach out to and get top running influencers, to bring them on and share their advice, which hopefully makes the show even more enjoyable for you!

 

Aug 4, 2020

In today's podcast, Coach Hayley gives her top five tips to prevent injury that she mastered over 20 years of running. Tune in now to find out what mistakes she made along the way so that you don't make the same ones again!

Aug 3, 2020

What is balance training? What is the science behind it? Is it worth doing balance and proprioception exercises as a runner? How improving your balance can help prevent injuries? Find out in today's podcast from Coach Claire.

Jul 31, 2020

In this week's episode, Coach Michael talks about the new venture of our RC founder Jeff and how this company helps runners during this pandemic time. He then shares inspiring stories of one of our RC athlete - Sabina Havkins.

Jul 30, 2020

Coach Dylan and Coach Ruairi do a recap on some running related news that has happened during the last one to two weeks in today's podcast. Listen now!

Jul 29, 2020

At 79, Dr. Betty Holston Smith is Fitter Than You Are

AT 79, Dr. Betty Holston Smith has the fitness level of your average 30-year old and looks at least 20 years younger than she is! How did the former 200-pound couch potato and cigarette smoker transition to a vegan 50 years ago when hardly anyone even knew the word vegan and become a highly fit ultra-marathon runner?

Dr. Betty shares with Coach Claire her nature’s wisdom philosophy she’s developed and lived by over the last 50 years, how she eats and trains, and her lack of need for much sleep or recovery time despite running 60 to 100 miles per week. Her overall health proves the benefits of strict vegan diets and highly fit lifestyles; the bottom line is that you do not need meat and junk food to stay healthy and fit. 

Dr. Betty’s top rankings in the national ultra-running community continues even as she ages. At ages 76 and 78, she set and later broke official USA-TF ultra-marathon national age group records for the 48-hour and 6-day ultra-marathon races. She is in the USA-Track and Field permanent record books. Currently, at age 79, she continues her national ranking by the ultra-running community (91.46% age group ranked and 49.06% overall ranked). 

This strict plant eater has been a top-ranked ultra-marathon runner since she began running ultra-marathons in 2007. She took to running ultras after she completed 85 marathons run throughout the USA and on all seven Continents (a marathon on six including Antarctica), and a half marathon on the Great Wall of China. Now she trains for and uses marathons to train for ultras!

 She has completed 30 ultras run in: Boston, San Francisco, Rhode Island, Vermont, Florida, Maryland, Virginia, Arizona, and Pennsylvania. She is the founder and coach of the “Abandon Your Limits” land and deep-water running programs.

Dr. Betty is currently running virtual races due to the pandemic and will continue to do so until the pandemic is controlled. She recently used a fitness age calculator developed by the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. The expected fitness level for her age of 79.6 is 26 VO2. According to the calculator, her fitness age is 45 VO2 and she has the fitness level of an average 30-year old. The free calculator is available at:

https://www.worldfitnesslevel.org/#/

Prepare to be amazed and inspired by the one and only, Dr Betty Holston Smith!




Questions Dr Betty is asked:

        

2:35 You are a 79 year old plant-based ultra runner and I suspect that you are healthier and fitter than most people listening to this show!  Can you talk about how you first started running and how you came to adopt a plant-based lifestyle?

 

12:12 How do you take your ego away from the finish line in a race?

 

12:27 You've talked about your life being  structured around "Nature's Wisdom." What does that mean for you?

 

23:24 You’ve said that you’re just a normal person that does a whole lot of good things. Well, I don’t know. Four hours of sleep doesn’t sound too normal. You said that you don’t need any recovery and you can still run 100 miles a week at almost 80 years old?

 

25:00 Have you ever been injured?

 

32:37 What foods do you eat every day?



Questions I ask everyone:

 

40:39 If you could go back and talk to yourself when you first started running, what advice would you give yourself?

 

42:06 What is the greatest gift that running has given you?

 

46:06 Where can listeners connect with you?



Quotes by Dr Betty:

 

“I don’t know how many marathons, I’ve lost track, but I do know at some point I was at 85 marathons, and I have run marathons on each of the seven continents.”

 

“My running is passion. My running is perseverance. Those two things are great for all of life, not just running.”

 

“I bring all of my food to all of my races. I also have a log with the food items across the top, and across the left side going down, I keep track of when I’m eating what. Once I’m into a six-day race and it’s day three, I’m not going to remember when I drank the last water.”

 

Take a Listen on Your Next Run

 

Want more awesome interviews and advice? Subscribe to our iTunes channel

Mentioned in this podcast: 

 

Vivobarefoot Shoes

Clif 90% Organic Lemon Lime Powder

Lifestyle by Nature book

Danny Dreyer, Chi Running Founder - Runt To The Top Interview

Runners Connect Winner's Circle Facebook Community

RunnersConnect Facebook page

claire@runnersconnect.net

 

Follow Dr Betty on:

 

drbettys@aol.com

 

We really hope you’ve enjoyed this episode of Run to the Top.

The best way you can show your support of the show is to share this podcast with your family and friends and share it on your Facebook, Twitter, or any other social media channel you use.

The more people who know about the podcast and download the episodes, the more I can reach out to and get top running influencers, to bring them on and share their advice, which hopefully makes the show even more enjoyable for you!

Jul 28, 2020

In today's episode, Coach Hayley shares tips on how to train for the half marathon and how you can improve your running performance for that distance. Tune in now!

Jul 27, 2020

What causes runner's knee? How common it is among athletes? What are its symptoms? How to treat and prevent runner's knee? Coach Claire explains in this episode.

Jul 24, 2020

In this week, Coach Michael talks about one of our athletes - Sabina Havkins. Find out why she is such an inspiration among our running community and the unique advice she gives to fellow runners.

Jul 23, 2020

Having trouble finding motivation to workout? Worried about your fitness? Not able to set running goals ? What can you do now to remain focused on your plans? In this episode, Coach Dylan talks about how to stay motivated and get going during this challenging times. Listen now!

Jul 22, 2020

Michael Hammond and Jeff Gaudette: How New Virtual Tools Will Transform Your Running and Racing

 

Some big changes have been happening this year at RunnersConnect. You may or may not have noticed that company founder Jeff Gaudette has been a little quieter than usual while working on a mystery project and Michael Hammond has stepped up as CEO. Coach Claire interviews them both to find out what’s been going on and what RunnersConnect members can expect to see going forward.

 

First, Head Coach Michael Hammond tells us who he is, what big changes were happening in RunnersConnect heading into 2020, and how the company has pivoted in response to the pandemic. How does an online coaching platform focused on training runners for races stay relevant during these unprecedented times when essentially every race for the year has been canceled?

 

Next, Jeff Gaudette discusses his exciting new company he’s been working on behind the scenes to help you stay motivated and at your running best during this new norm of virtual racing. He’s come up with a great new way to make individual racing fair, fun, and more engaging. There’s definitely a lot to look forward to!

 

Jeff Gaudette is an elite marathoner who founded RunnersConnect in 2011 as a better way to coach his personal clients. He was a two-time Division-I All-American in Cross Country at Brown University and competed professionally for four years afterwards. He has competed internationally in numerous marathons with a personal best of 2:22:02, and has recorded Olympic Trials qualifying times in the marathon and 10,000 meters.

 

Jeff’s coaching career started in 2004 when he was a member of the Hansons-Brooks professional team. He’s had success at all levels of coaching; high school, college, local elite, and everyday runners. Under his tutelage, hundreds of runners have finished their first marathon and he’s helped countless runners qualify for Boston. Jeff has been featured in Running Times magazine, Endurance Magazine, as well as numerous local magazine fitness columns. 

 

Michael Hammond is the Head Coach and newly appointed CEO of RunnersConnect. He competed in cross country and track while at Virginia Tech, earning two ACC titles and four NCAA All-American honors.  His individual efforts led his team to four ACC team championships: one in cross country, two in indoor track, and one in outdoor track.

 

Post-collegiately, Michael has competed formerly as a member of Furman Elite in Greenville, South Carolina and currently as an independent athlete. He now trains at his alma mater while also serving as a volunteer assistant with the team.

 

Michael’s passion for helping athletes succeed began while counseling high school runners at  cross country camps. Since then he has coached several local athletes of various ability levels while continuing to gain experience at the college level. You can catch him every Friday on the Team Update segments of the Run To The Top podcast.

 

Questions Michael and Jeff are asked:

 

2:35 2020 has been a historic year, to say the least, with everything that is going on in the world.  Big changes were going on in Runners Connect before the pandemic hit and we expected an exciting year, but obviously nothing like this could have been predicted.  If we can rewind to December 2019, what was your vision for Runners Connect in 2020?

 

6:24 Most of our listeners do know what RunnersConnect offers, but for those who don’t, could you just give just a quick elevator speech of exactly if you go to RunnersConnect, what are you looking at? What would you get if you go to RunnersConnect?

 

8:31 Let’s get into all the races being canceled. Traditionally, RunnersConnect has always been race-oriented, meaning that most of our athletes sign up with a particular race in mind, so obviously RunnersConnect had to make some changes. What were the changes that RunnersConnect made?

 

13:45 Speaking of getting fitter and stronger, you have been doing something a little special with strength training. Do you want to talk about what you’ve been doing pretty much since the pandemic started to help people get strong?

 

22:00 You mentioned that you and Jeff came up with this idea for live sessions, so we’re going to hear from him at the end of our conversation, but I would love to talk about Jeff while he’s not here for a second. We at RunnersConnect never really made a big splash or a big announcement about where is Jeff and who is this guy Michael? So I’m going to give the ball to you and talk about that. What on earth has happened to Jeff Gaudette and who are you, Michael?

 

28:57 We’ve got some great things coming up for our RC members, and I will ask Jeff when he comes on about some of those exciting new features, but before we wrap up with you, Michael, what do you see happening in the future of RunnersConnect? I know it’s hard to see so far with nobody knows when this pandemic’s going to end, but anything you’d like to share about how we’re moving forward?

 

40:18 Jeff, can you talk about your new company Fitually, how it started and why it’s so special?



Questions I ask everyone:

 

33:39 If you could go back and talk to yourself when you first started running, what advice would you give yourself?

 

35:16 What is the greatest gift that running has given you?

 

37:49 Where can listeners connect with you?



Quotes by Michael and Jeff:

 

“We want to provide every single resource we possibly can to give you what you need to run your best.”

 

“So much of RunnersConnect in the past has always been like a utility. You want to run ‘X’ time or finish ‘X’ race or run ‘X’ distance, you come to us; we help you achieve that. Bam.  That’s it. Whereas there’s so much more to it than that. People desire so much more to it than that. So I think that’s been a huge learning point to me in doing live sessions.”

 

“We’re definitely going to do everything we can to improve the running lives and just the lives in general from a holistic standpoint of everyone who’s one of our athletes or one of our listeners.”

 

“I started to think, is there a way that we can make virtual events better? Is there a way we can bring some of the elements that make in-person races exciting to a virtual event?”



Take a Listen on Your Next Run

Want more awesome interviews and advice? Subscribe to our iTunes channel

Mentioned in this podcast: 

email Michael

RunnersConnect

Fitually

Runners Connect Winner's Circle Facebook Community

RunnersConnect Facebook page

claire@runnersconnect.net

 

Follow Michael on:

 

Instagram



We really hope you’ve enjoyed this episode of Run to the Top.

The best way you can show your support of the show is to share this podcast with your family and friends and share it on your Facebook, Twitter, or any other social media channel you use.

The more people who know about the podcast and download the episodes, the more I can reach out to and get top running influencers, to bring them on and share their advice, which hopefully makes the show even more enjoyable for you!

Jul 21, 2020

Why we need strong calves? How strong your calves are? How to strengthen your calf muscles? Coach Hayley explains in this week's ExtraKick episode. Listen now!

Jul 20, 2020

What are the common misconceptions about base training and how they came about? How to take a more modern approach when you structure your base training phase? Find out in today's episode from Coach Hayley.

Jul 17, 2020

In this week's Team RC Update, Coach Michael talks about the current situation related to the major marathon events and what we can do to move forward with our race plans. Listen now!

Jul 16, 2020

In this second part of "Why do Runners Do That" series, Coach Ruairi and Coach Dylan answer three more questions that are commonly asked related to running. Tune in now!

Jul 15, 2020

Wendy Wood - Habits to Automatically Improve Your Running

 

Is running a habit for you? If yes, do you believe your running is a conscious choice? If no, how long would it take you to form a running habit? (Hint: A lot longer than you probably think.) What are habits anyway, and how can they benefit you as a runner? 

 

Psychologist Wendy Wood literally wrote the book on habits, appropriately called Good Habits, Bad Habits, and she shares with Coach Claire some of the knowledge she’s gained during her 30-plus years of researching habit-related behavior. She discusses how habits form and how they overcome your intentions, how you can create friction to make your bad habits less attractive, and how good habits can pave the way to expanding your goals and increasing your creativity. 

 

Wendy is Provost Professor of Psychology and Business at the University of Southern California, where she also served as Vice Dean of Social Sciences. A 2008 Radcliffe Institute Fellow, and 2018 Distinguished Chair of Behavioral Science at the Sorbonne/INSEAD in Paris, Wendy has advised the World Bank, the Centers for Disease Control, and industries such as Procter & Gamble and Lever Bros.

Wendy completed her graduate degree in psychology at the University of Massachusetts. She went on to be the James B. Duke Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at Duke University. Having published over 100 scientific articles, she received numerous awards for her research and teaching. For the past 30 years, her research has been continuously funded by the National Science Foundation, the National Institute of Health, and the Templeton Foundation.

 

Questions Wendy is asked:

 

3:55 You are a research psychologist who has devoted the last 30 years to understanding how habits work and you are also a runner, so when I heard about your work and read your book Good Habits Bad Habits, I knew I wanted to have you on the show.  First off, what got you started in studying our habits?

 

5:54 In your book you said, "Intentions are no match for our habits."  Can you describe this and basically define what a habit is?

 

8:16 A running habit, for example, I can use my own experience. I can tell you the first year that I was a runner, I hated every second of it, and then eventually it became just a part of my identity, who I am. It’s obviously my job now, but it took forever for it to be something that I really identified with. Is that really a common experience for most people that you’ve found?

 

10:10 Does it take a lot less time to establish a running habit for example if you reduce decisions, like run at the same time every day, always have the same pair of shoes, always run the same routes? Is there a shortcut to getting a good habit?

 

12:46 We crave things that are new. We want to do new and exciting things. But you’re also saying that the repetition, the doing the thing over and over and over again is also what we crave?

 

16:48 I would love to talk about goals and how they relate to habit. You’ve said that when you’re forming a habit at the beginning a goal is absolutely critical, but as the habit becomes more established, you might not need the goal quite as much or perhaps not at all. And how that relates to running, especially this year so many of our running races, our big goals, have been canceled, and some of the runners react in one way and they completely stop training or almost stop training, and other runners just seem to find brand new goals, other ways to motivate. I would love to hear your thoughts on that and how these two groups are different.

 

21:30 One thing that I would love to get your thoughts on are how do you establish a habit that isn’t daily, like for example, strength training? I often tell my athletes that they should strength train, lift some weights twice a week or three times a week, and for some people that’s a lot harder than doing it every single day. How do we get ourselves to do more intermittent things on a regular basis, just not on a daily basis?

 

25:07 You’ve said that bad habits are not that different from good habits as far as the way the brain works. One study that you referenced in your book was the famous marshmallow study, which everybody has heard about where little kids are given a marshmallow, and if they don’t eat it within a certain period of time, they’ll get a second marshmallow. And of course all hilarity ensues and these poor little kids end up eating the marshmallow in most of the occasions, except for some very resilient little kids who end up getting both. What I wanted to ask about, you talk about hiding the marshmallow, hiding the temptation, getting it out of sight, out of mind. Can you talk a little bit about how we can change our bad habits?

 

31:28 Now that you’re a researcher and you’ve studied all of this about habits, does that mean you do everything perfectly in your life now that you know all this information?

 

34:01 Another great thing that I learned from your books is If you "remove the friction,” that is what can help you develop much better habits. Can you talk a little bit about the friction? 

 

37:44 Another lesson from your book is that we need to take our thinking brains out of the picture. Is that what you’re saying? 

 

39:19 Wendy, what’s next for you? What questions are you researching now?



Questions I ask everyone:

 

41:13 If you could go back and talk to yourself when you first started running, what advice would you give yourself?

 

41:42 What is the greatest gift that running has given you?

 

42:46 Where can listeners connect with you?

 

Quotes by Wendy:

 

“I had two sons and like many women experienced a weight gain and I was very uncomfortable after they were born. I didn’t like being that heavy. And so I would try all kinds of different things to get myself out running, and it took about a year of trying different things to figure out exactly what was the right approach for me.”

 

“Once you become a habitual runner, it’s as if you can use that pattern in the service of a whole bunch of different goals.”

 

“We all have self control. It’s just self control is much more in our environment. It’s much more around us than in us.”



Take a Listen on Your Next Run

Want more awesome interviews and advice? Subscribe to our iTunes channel

Mentioned in this podcast: 

 

Email Wendy

Wendy Wood at USC

Good Habits Bad Habits

Runners Connect Winner's Circle Facebook Community

RunnersConnect Facebook page

claire@runnersconnect.net

 

Follow Wendy on:

 

Twitter



We really hope you’ve enjoyed this episode of Run to the Top.

The best way you can show your support of the show is to share this podcast with your family and friends and share it on your Facebook, Twitter, or any other social media channel you use.

The more people who know about the podcast and download the episodes, the more I can reach out to and get top running influencers, to bring them on and share their advice, which hopefully makes the show even more enjoyable for you!

Jul 14, 2020

Everyone has pre-race anxiety. But are you worried about the negative impact of pre-race jitters on your performance? What are the ways to calm your nerves and deal with performance anxiety? Coach Hayley discusses in today's podcast.

Jul 13, 2020

In this week's Audio Blog, Coach Claire talks about the relationship between hip strength and running injuries. What's the latest research say? Are core workouts helpful to distance runners? What can you do to improve hip strength? Find out now!

Jul 10, 2020

In this episode, Coach Michael talks about one on our fascinating athletes - Bjorg Klem.  Find out how she handles the pandemic in terms of training/racing and creates positive influence in our RC community.

Jul 9, 2020

In this week's episode, we have a fun new segment where Coaches Dylan and Ruairi walk through some of the interesting running events happened in the last weeks. Tune in now!

Jul 8, 2020

Brian Reynolds -  World Record Powerhouse on Prosthetics

 

Brian Reynolds is a world record holder in several running distances despite not running until after college, and oh yeah, he’s a double amputee. Brian initially didn’t even walk much, never mind run, because he was convinced it just wasn’t possible for him. Instead he pursued powerlifting, accomplishing a deadlift of 485 pounds while weighing only 135 pounds himself.

 

How did Brian morph from powerlifter to running record holder? It all started with a fundraising hiking challenge in the Grand Canyon, an epic setting for a life-changing experience. Brian discovered a love for endurance, which eventually led him to running despite his prosthetic legs not being remotely suitable for athletic pursuits. He persevered through the pain, and incredibly, just three weeks after he ran his first mile, he ran his first marathon. Brian emphatically recommends you not follow this training plan.

 

Brian’s story is truly fascinating, and he also shares with Coach Claire how he’s staying inspired and finding meaning during the pandemic. He’s definitely not short on motivation! Brian also discusses his approach to alcohol and training and talks about his current work for the nonalcoholic brewing company, Athletic Brewing, who is generously offering a 15% discount for listeners of this podcast until August 10th. See the list of resources mentioned in this podcast for the discount code.

Questions Brian is asked:

 

2:54 You have an amazing story of starting off in weightlifting then transitioning to endurance running.  Your accomplishments would be interesting in their own right, but they are even more fascinating because you are a double amputee.  Can you talk about your history, beginning with how you lost your lower legs as a child?

 

4:29 Were you into sports and activities right away or did that happen later in life?

 

5:51 How much could you lift?

 

6:08 What did you like most about weightlifting?  What did it do for you?

 

6:43 What were the challenges of walking during the time you were weightlifting?

 

7:40 How did all that change for you?

 

9:50 Why didn’t you quit running given the effects of running with prosthetics not designed for a lot of activity? What was inside your head that made you want to keep going through all that pain?

 

10:44 When did you finally get new prosthetics that didn’t cause you running-related problems?

 

11:39 Was running a marathon a few weeks after getting your new prosthetic legs a good idea?

 

11:49 Tell me what that first marathon was like.

 

12:53  How sore were you afterward?

 

13:08 You’ve made a lot of progress since that first marathon. You actually broke the world record at the time for a double amputee in the marathon with a time of 3:03 in Chicago.  Can you talk about your progress and how you went from four-and-a-half hours to almost three hours? 

 

15:51 What have you done as far as training? Have you gotten a coach, or how have you really managed to lower your time so much?

 

17:49 How has your training changed since the pandemic?

 

18:23 Do you have any tips for runners that are struggling right now with motivation with no races?

 

20:23 You work for Athletica Brewing, a non-alcoholic beer company that is becoming super popular lately.  Can you talk a little bit about the company and what you do there?

 

22:38 What gave you the idea to not drink during training cycles?

 

23:29 Do you find it’s easier to be black and white about drinking/not drinking versus trying to moderate drinking during training?

 

24:24 Do you miss powerlifting at all? 

 

24:45 What is the line between lifting too heavy and just right for an endurance athlete?

 

25:49 How many days a week are you lifting when you’re in running training?

 

26:08 Are gyms opening up yet in New Jersey?

 

26:24 What is on your plans next? Any running-related goals that you have in the future?



Questions I ask everyone:

 

27:26 If you could go back and talk to yourself when you first started running, what advice would you give yourself?

 

28:17 What is the greatest gift that running has given you?

 

28:27 Where can listeners connect with you?

 

Quotes by Brian:

 

“It was definitely for me one of the hardest things I’ve ever done going from not really walking more than a block here and there to I think it was a 16 or a 17-mile hike in the Grand Canyon.”

 

“The prosthetist said, ‘What do you want to do?’ and I said, ‘I want to be the best runner an amputee can be,’ and he said, ‘We can make that happen.’”

 

“The half marathon has always been my favorite distance. It’s like the blend between the speed and the endurance.”

 

Take a Listen on Your Next Run

 

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Mentioned in this podcast: 

 

A Step Ahead Prosthetics

Team in Training

City Coach

Use code CLAIRE for a 15% discount at Athletic Brewing until August 10th, 2020.

Runners Connect Winner's Circle Facebook Community

RunnersConnect Facebook page

claire@runnersconnect.net

 

Follow Brian on:

 

Instagram



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Jul 7, 2020

How to avoid emotional eating and curb unhealthy snacking during the pandemic? Coach Hayley shares some great tips to manage stress eating in today's podcast. Listen now!

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