Author Archive | Trevor Spencer

Race Recap: The Tupelo Marathon –Trample the Weak Hurdle the Dead!

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Angie and I recently ran the Tupelo Marathon in Tupelo, Mississippi.

Although Elvis was born in Tupelo, this is not a race for pretty boys.

First of all, it’s hot. I’m talking about seventy-six degrees at the starting line at 5:00 in the morning. Humidity was probably 90%. A couple years ago a tropical storm hit during the race. They kept it running.

Second, it’s ugly. I just say that because it looks too much like S.E. Missouri –bugs, brush, and bungalows. I wouldn’t go down there for the scenery but I would for the BBQ.

Third, it’s small. The race draws about three hundred marathoners and does away with race expos, pacing groups, music, the national anthem, spectators, porta-potties (not entirely), and course photographers except at the very end. But it was easy to find parking.

Fourth, you run in the dark for the first hour. I enjoyed it even though I didn’t have a headlamp. As far as I know . . . only the weak got trampled. Continue Reading →

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Interview with Vinnie Tortorich – How Your Good Intentions Have Been Stolen

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Vinnie Tortorich is the author of the book Fitness Confidential – adventures in the weight loss game. *Quick heads up, the book does contain adult language and content.

He is the go to guy for celebrities and athletes who need to get fit fast. He hosts the Angriest Trainer Podcast and is an ultra-endurance cyclist. He has also battled Leukemia, a struggle he chronicles in the book.

Vinnie calls himself America’s angriest trainer but he’s actually a really nice guy. As a personal trainer he doesn’t scream “feel the burn!” when making his clients do push ups. He says that’s only what made-for-T.V. trainers do.

He is angry because of the misinformation that exists in the fitness industry -an industry he’s been working in since the 80s. Vinnie’s contention is that the calorie in calorie out weight loss model is a bunch of bull.

“Your good intentions have been stolen, and I’m here to help you get ’em back!”

The book opens with a situation where movie execs from Disney need him to take 35 pounds off an actress in six weeks.

When you see an actress on the red carpet and you know she just had a baby three weeks ago but she looks fabulous; she either has me or someone like me working with her. -Vinnie Tortorich

He will be the first to tell you that these celebrities types are not genetically perfect. What works for them will work for us. The secret sauce of Fitness Confidential is called NSNG (no sugars no grains). Continue Reading →

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Race Recap: The Missoula Marathon

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Angie and I recently finished the Missoula Marathon in beautiful Missoula, Montana (Angie’s home state).

This marathon is abundantly picturesque -think mountains, valleys and rivers. Not only that, I found it to be well organized. I heard that this race fills up every year and I can see why. The race caps off at 1,500 full marathoners and 3,500 half marathoners. I would definitely run it again. Continue Reading →

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Running with a Hydration Vest

hydration_vestTo celebrate my birthday on May 20th, Angie and I stole away to Hawn State Park (1 hours south of St. Louis) to run the 10 mile loop.

We meant to get an early start but by 7:30 I was still gathering my running gear. As I clumsily pawed through the cupboard for my handheld water bottle Angie said, “Here, you might want to open this birthday gift now.”

“Ok” I said, never objecting to birthday gifts when they present themselves. When I tore away the tissue paper what did my eyes behold? A Nathan HPL #020 Hydration Vest. Hot diggity! Continue Reading →

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Boston Marathon Tribute

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This is a special tribute to the 2013 Boston Marathon. In this episode we read emails from people within the MTA community who were at the Boston Marathon, and speak to our friend Angela Coloumbe who was volunteering near the finish line.

Glued to our laptops, Angie and I watched the live streaming of this year’s Boston Marathon until the elite runners crossed the finish line. We have truly grown to love these running icons (especially Kara Goucher and Shalane Flanagan) and every year we cross our fingers hoping an American will win. No offense to my non-American friends . . . it’s a rooting for the home team sort of thing. The last American to win Boston was Greg Meyer in 1983.

You gotta take your hat off to both Lelisa Desisa Benti, who has only ran one other marathon before winning Boston, and Rita Jeptoo who won in 2006, took 7 years off to become a mother, then returned to win it this year!

In case you didn’t see this yet: Continue Reading →

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Race Recap: The Modesto Half Marathon

Modesto Half MarathonSurgical Artistry Modesto Marathon is a well organized local race drawing about 3,000 people. It features a marathon, half marathon, and 5k. My dad and I ran the half marathon.

Farewell to Modesto
The purpose of my coming to Modesto was to help my mom and dad empty their house and move to the Washington coast.

The move required a massive downsizing –from a 4,000 sq ft home to a cabin less than half that size. Literally every item had to be packed, sold, or given away. I’m talking about 60 years of stuff! Some of the stuff was going to me . . . I just had to get it home.

The move just happened to coincide with the Modesto Marathon so Dad and I decided to run the half as a final goodbye to the city where I grew up and where he lived most of his life. It took us 2 hours and 24 minutes to finish the half marathon. Apparently we like long goodbyes.

—Read the rest of my race recap— Continue Reading →

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How I Ran a Sub-4 Hour Marathon

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You might have heard on our last podcast episode that I ran the Rock ‘n’ Roll New Orleans Marathon in 3:54:15.

A sub-4 hour marathon is not remarkable as far as finishing times go. I’m a middle of the pack runner. (I finished 597 out of 2633).

But I did run 37 minutes faster than my best time . . . which is remarkable for me.

And it was actually easier than I thought it would be. Much easier than running my first marathon.

Here are a few tricks I used to keep my run under 4 hours.

Continue Reading →

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What I Need to Run 20 Miles

Fuel for my 20 miler (minus the fruit in the background)

Fuel for my 20 miler (minus the fruit in the background)

Tomorrow Angie and I are going on a 20 mile trail run. I’m totally stoked!

In fact, I’m so excited about this run that I found myself gathering my fueling supplies 17 hours in advance. Usually I throw it all in a bag before heading out the door.

Now that I step back and look at it all . . . THIS IS A LOT OF STUFF!

But every one of these fueling items is necessary when I run for 3+ hours.

Here is a break down of what I’m taking Continue Reading →

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Your Footprints in the Snow

footprint in snowThe snow doesn’t stay around for long here in S.E. Missouri.

We usually only get a light dusting -enough to conceal a dangerous layer of ice.

On one such day I found myself on a 5 mile training run. The temperature must have been in the low 20s.

As I picked my way along the road trying to avoid the icy patches I suddenly saw footprints. Continue Reading →

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The Unbreakable Runner

UnbreakableI recently ran twenty miles. This was a scheduled run in my marathon training for the 2013 New Orleans Marathon.

Twenty miles still feels like a huge distance to me and perhaps it always will. But I’m curious . . . do ultramarathoners look at 20 miles as a mere warm up? What’s 20 miles if you’re running 100!?

I finished my run strong and happy but tired. I can’t fathom running another 80 miles. Yet thousands of people (many who are older than me) run 100 mile races every year around the world.

One such race is the Western States 100 which starts at Squaw Valley Ski Area, Lake Tahoe, California and crosses mountains and canyons eventually ending in Auburn, California 100 miles later. Runners must make it in 30 hours or less.

I just watched a documentary called Unbreakable: The Western States 100. In 2010 the competition was particularly fierce. The four runners contending for first place were as follows: Continue Reading →

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How to Run a Faster Half Marathon

Photo Credit: Jason Q [syntheticj]

Photo Credit: Jason Q [syntheticj]

My first half marathon took 2:02 to finish. Afterwards my feet were too tender to walk back to the hotel. It felt like someone slapped them with a boat oar for two hours.

But alas! That was the young naive Trevor.

Two and a half years later my time has improved to 1:40 without post race soreness!

I attribute all my improvement to Angie’s coaching. I know it works and maybe if I wasn’t such a lazy runner I would follow her advice more completely.

If your goal is to run a faster half marathon next year (2013) I want to give you Angie’s 10 point plan for making it happen.

Continue Reading →

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Race Recap: The Route 66 Marathon

Click to Enlarge

Click to Enlarge

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Angie and I ran the Route 66 Marathon in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on November 23rd.

This race had been on Angie’s wishlist for some time because of it attracts lots of Marathon Maniacs (she is maniac# 4723).

They even gave her a maniac finisher’s medal. How cool is that?

Cooler than anything I’ve given her.

This race proliferated with coolness. Here’s how Continue Reading →

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