Archive | Guest Perspective

InsideTracker Review

N-O_7ZQb_400x400Even as my health has improved, I wasn’t sure about my overall outlook. InsideTracker’s report reveals my successes and guides me on where to improve.

By Henry Howard

I began running about five years ago as a way to improve on my health and cross “finish a marathon” off my bucket list. The side benefits have included eating a healthier diet and eliminating soda — with the exception of a rum and coke from time to time. Continue Reading →

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It Takes a Village to Build a Marathoner

IMG_0153Jon Lepley of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, knew he wanted to be a runner and started out creating a training plan in which he would run three or four days a week, with progressively longer runs.

But he soon developed bad habits — running every training run as hard as possible — and developed running injuries. “I was never fully following a structured training plan, instead just generally trying to increase distance on a weekend long run, and recover in the days in between,” he recalls.

Lepley set a goal for himself: completing a marathon. And he needed help, so in stepped Marathon Training Academy.

Continue Reading →

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With The Correct Training Anything Can Be Possible

IMG_3262Collegiate swimmer Molly Culver needed a new challenge and took up ultra running. She won her first ultra, the North Face ECS in Wisconsin, and returns this year. By Henry Howard

When work and home commitments collided with my race calendar, I had to withdraw from the Ultra Race of Champions, which would have been my second ultra.

I had been looking forward to that race. However, as I shuffled plans, my initial disappointment gave way to excitement when I realized that I could return to Wisconsin for an Endurance Challenge Series event.

As much as I am looking forward to the Wisconsin race, I am probably not looking forward to it as much as Molly Culver, who has won the 50-mile event three years in a row. Continue Reading →

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Thoughts from a First-Time Ultra Runner

Henry_BuckeyeTrail1I had no idea what lay ahead when I recently lined up at the starting line for my first ultra race, the Buckeye Trail 50K in Brecksville, Ohio.

I had completed 13 marathons previously, including one on a trail — the North Face Endurance Challenge Series in Wisconsin last year.

I knew I had trained well and had my nutrition dialed in. We got a break from the weather — the long-range forecasts of thunderstorms had given way to a nice 60-degree day start.

There was no rain in the forecast and the temperature would be in the mid-70s around my anticipated finishing time. Not bad at all for July.

Oh, about that anticipated finishing time. That was an eye-opener! Continue Reading →

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Champion Runner Shares Trail Knowledge, Advice

Bryon Powell and Meghan Hicks running a trail in Moab, Utah. Credit Kirsten Kortebein

Bryon Powell and Meghan Hicks running a trail in Moab, Utah. Credit Kirsten
Kortebein


Meghan Hicks has been a runner since she was 14, focusing on road races early on. At the same time, Hicks credits her parents for taking her to “wild places” and her brother for playing with her endlessly in the woods when they were younger.

About 10 years ago, she combined her loves of running and the outdoors by exploring the sport of trail running. In 2013, she won the Marathon des Sables in Morocco, the world’s oldest and largest expedition trail-running race.

Now, as Hicks prepares to run the Hardrock 100 trail race, she and partner Bryon Powell have put their love of the outdoors, trail knowledge and passion for the sport into a 226-page book, “Where the Road Ends: A Guide to Trail Running.” Continue Reading →

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A Vow to Exercise, Lose Weight

Debbie's BQ finish

Debbie’s BQ finish

Newlyweds Bill and Debbie Gelber made a promise to help each other. Now, many races later they are lighter, speedier and healthier.

By Henry Howard

Bill and Debbie Gelber were happy and in love when they committed to each other at their wedding ceremony in 2007.

But when they flipped through their wedding photos, they were both surprised at how much weight they had gained. Debbie was approaching her 40th birthday and Bill would soon turn 50.

Thus began another commitment for the couple: helping each other on the path to good health, which eventually led to more than 100 races for her and plenty of others for him. Continue Reading →

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Race review: Alpine Classic Half Marathon

image2A beautiful course, capable pacers and a helpful volunteer made this a race to remember.

By Henry Howard

I waited at the finish line for my two new BFFs, Wan and Allison.

This was minutes after I wrapped up the Alpine Classic Half Marathon, a community race put on by Utah Run at the base of the Wasatch Mountains. As a flatlander, I had no idea how I would fare in the 5,000-foot elevation.

Thanks to pacers Wan and Allison, I was able to make it through the tough parts and finish strong — a 1:41:29 PR, 15th overall and first place in my age group. Continue Reading →

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The Number One Reason Why You Won’t Reach Your Training Goals

photo-1421091242698-34f6ad7fc088The number one reason why runners won’t reach their goals is also one of the most preventable reasons: injury! Nothing derails a perfectly developed training plan like an injury.

The most common injury to runners is also the most common injury for those in the western world: low back pain (LBP). LBP is estimated to affect nearly 80% of the U.S. population at one time or another. And worse yet, once you have experienced an episode of LBP you have a 90% chance of having a reoccurrence. Continue Reading →

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A ‘non-runner’ now embraces PRs and PR

MegFingert2Public relations professional mixes business with pleasure — promoting race events and setting new personal bests.

By Henry Howard

Unlike all the other athletes I have featured in this blog, I personally know Meg Fingert. In fact, we met before either of us were runners.

At the time, about six years ago, I was recruiting Purdue University students to assist with a new website and Fingert was a college student. Ironically, she was among the students in the first class I taught at Purdue a couple of years later.

Since then, we have both graduated onto bigger and better things, including marathons. But this is her story – the story of a self-proclaimed “non-runner” who is eyeing a 50-state goal. Continue Reading →

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The 3 Most Common Mistakes Runners Make That Can Cause Low Back Pain

MultifidusMusclesLow back pain (LBP) is one of the most prevalent medical conditions treated in the United States and throughout the western world.

Avoiding the following most common mistakes can save you from costly medical visits, prescriptions, chiropractic visits, and physical therapy services.

More importantly, avoiding injury and LBP insures that you can keep training and racing to your heart’s content!

Continue Reading →

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For the Love of the Run, the Journey, the Community

Dan Savage

At the Finish of my First Ultra

Shortly after turning 40, Dan Savage looked in the mirror. Staring back was a stressed-out, 65-pound overweight guy.

Savage had been in and out of the hospital, getting treatment for Crohn’s Disease.

His diet and exercise habits were bad, to put it mildly.

“I thought a workout involved lifting a double cheeseburger versus a single. It was U-G-L-Y. It was at this point I had one of those life changing moments – you know where ‘your want to,’ wants to change? I just told myself, if I wanted to see my kids grow up and see any grandkids, I need to change, and change now.”

And so he did, joining the Marathon Training Academy, and becoming more active and improving his diet. Now when he looks in the mirror, he sees an ultra marathoner! Continue Reading →

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