Ben Luke Smith grew up in a small town in Alabama and spent his early years as most kids do, playing youth team sports and riding his bike. Ben describes how a series of very unfortunate events in his life over the past several years has shaped who he is as a man and runner. From being held at gunpoint, to losing his mom and others from cancer, Ben has encountered and overcome many obstacles in life. We talk with Ben about obstacle course racing, such as Tough Mudders, Spartan Races, Rugged Maniac, and Warrior Dash, and how his faith, fitness, and running have helped him continue to recover from PTSD and become stronger and more resilient. Ben has served in the U.S. Air Force since 2010 and encourages listeners to always keep going and never stop. He also reminds runners that asking for help is a sign of strength, not weakness, and challenges listeners to always lend a helping hand to others.
BethAnn Telford continues telling her story from Episode 39 by talking about her recent experience running the 2017 World Marathon Challenge, which consists of 7 marathons in 7 consecutive days in 7 continents. As the first competitor with live cancer in her body, she used this race as a platform to spread hope for those with brain cancer and to raise money for Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure. BethAnn shares stories about other competitors like Ryan Hall and Michael Wardian and how they all came together as a community to help each other achieve their goals. We reflect on the reason BethAnn continues to run and she challenges runners of all abilities to find a cause they believe in to run for, and to help others join the running community.
BethAnn Telford began running in high school as a requirement to participate on her field hockey and soccer teams. After 9/11, BethAnn moved to Washington, DC and quickly began running marathons. In the 19th mile of the 2004 Marine Corps Marathon, BethAnn had an odd experience, leading to her discovering that she had a frontal lobe brain tumor. After surgery and recovery, BethAnn was back running the Marine Corps Marathon the following year. BethAnn has been utilizing her gift of life and running to raise money for Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure, an amazing organization supporting cutting-edge brain cancer research. To date, she has run a couple hundred marathons and has finished numerous endurance races and triathlons. BethAnn continues her story on Episode 40 in Part II, which will release on March 13, 2017.
When Thom Singer first joined the Runified Podcast on Episode 5, he was a non-runner. Over the past year, Thom has eased into the life of a runner and shares the many different ways running has improved his life. Thom talks about training for and running his first half marathon. We also talk about how running has been a source of inspiration to further his own business and career, and likens his running transition and journey to challenges and progression and in the business world. As a professional speaker, Thom speaks about the Paradox of Potential, which he thought of while running. Thom challenges listeners to encourage others to start running by actively helping them through the transition from non-runner to runner.
Martin Parnell never excelled at a single sport until his brother challenged him to a marathon at the age of 47. Martin quickly realized that he has the unique ability to run for very long distances and time. In cycling across Africa and playing sports with children along the way, Martin realized the power that sports can have in the lives of youth. Martin took his desire to help others through running to an extreme level in 2010 where he ran 250 marathons in one year to raise money for Right to Play. We talk with Martin about his epic adventures and how a serious health concern nearly took his life. Martin shares details about his recovery and the inspiration for his most recent journey, a marathon in Afghanistan. Martin continues the conversation from Episode 36 with Kate McKenzie and opens listeners eyes to the reality women face in this very different country. Martin shares his stories in two books and challenges runners to do something to help others with their running.
Kate McKenzie started running as a young child, feeling free as the wind ran through her hair. More recently, Kate made the jump from running 10k races to running her full marathon in Afghanistan. Kate shares the reasons behind the decision to run this marathon and tells us about the amazing film her team is creating called The Secret Marathon. The story Kate shares is one of hope and courage, sharing the reality that Afghan women face when trying to run. Not only does Kate want to shed light on inequality these women face, but she also wants to erase the stigma surrounding Afghanistan, as she describes her experience. Kate will open your eyes to a different world of running and challenge you to be a part of the change she is determined to see in this world. Be sure to check out the recently released trailer for the film and tune in next week where we will talk with Kate’s coach, Martin Parnell.
Running found Bill O’Shields when he was serving a 15-year sentence in a federal penitentiary for robbing a bank. While in jail, Bill trained with fellow prisoners and quickly ramped up to running 70 miles a week, mostly on a half-mile track within the prison walls. After reading about the Boston Marathon in Runner’s World in 2007, Bill decided that running this race would be his goal. After being released he immediately began running, eventually qualifying for the 2016 Boston Marathon. Bill shares helpful training advice and challenges our listeners to be open to everyone's situation and background and to not judge others. Bill’s motto of “run free” has meant a lot to him and he shares his story in his book Behind the wall to the Boston Marathon 2016. Bill loves to inspire others with his story while sharing his message of hope and freedom. Running has brought Bill to amazing places, including meeting Ryan Hall, Meb Keflezighi, and Bart Yasso.
Martinus Evans is not your typical runner. As a competitive football player, he always looked for ways to run the least amount possible while on the field. What started as a snide comment about his health from his doctor in 2012 turned into a love of running. Martinus is now a marathoner, a running coach, motivational speaker, blogger, and podcast host; all with the common goal of inspiring runners of all abilities to achieve more than they could ever think was possible. In our interview Martinus shares training advice, inspiration from his story, as well providing a unique perspective on running as a “back of the pack” runner. Be sure to check out 300PoundsAndRunning.com/runified for a special offer for Runified listeners, a free beginners guide to running.
Steph Cash Hogan is a first-grade teacher living in Saratoga Springs, NY. Through college, she was athletic and played lacrosse, but always disliked running. A few years ago Steph was going through a stressful period in her life and needed to do something for herself. What started with running 30 minutes on her lunch break turned into accomplishing much more than she could ever imagine, including running several half marathons, three full marathons and qualifying for the Boston Marathon. Steph shares her running journey and amazing stories about the running community. She provides training tips for runners of all abilities and motivates them to reach their goals and to inspire others with their stories.
Marcel van der Kuil has been running for 25 years. What started as a way to cope with significant heartbreak, has now evolved into the goal of being a sustainable runner for the rest of his life. Running has taught Marcel a lot about himself, mainly through recovering from a very significant and freak injury to his lower leg. Marcel has a well-rounded and balanced approach to fitness and life, including the Marathon Revolution methodology based on heart rate, and the Quantified Self approach. Marcel’s passions for technology, entrepreneurship and sport led him to start a company called SensoRun, as well as a Meetup group called Running 20/20, with the goal of accelerating the innovation of the running experience by bringing together scientists, runners, and entrepreneurs. Marcel challenges runners to connect with themselves and others, sharing the joy that can be found in running.
Arne Robertson was inspired to start running through a combination of internal and external promptings. From the initial mile he ran, to the marathons he has completed, running has helped him in many ways. We learn about lessons learned in his races and Arne humbly provides training and running advice. He also inspires listeners by challenging every runner to be an inspiration for others, as well as remember and acknowledge those who inspire you.
Kim Eagle is a nutrition coach, helping athletes across the world reach their fitness and nutrition goals with her Earn That Body programs. Kim became a runner a couple years before her son was born. After training for marathons by herself for years, she found that training with a coach and group enabled her to reach new levels. We talk with Kim about how she became a nutrition and fitness coach and how she has turned her love for fitness and nutrition into a thriving business. We talk about nutrition for long distance runners and Kim provides very helpful advice for runners of all abilities. Kim provides a special offer for our listeners you won’t want to miss.
Ben Jacobs started running in 7th grade to get in shape for hockey. He gradually learned to enjoy running and especially appreciated the community and team aspect, leading to running competitively in college. We chat with Ben about how he became a coach at the university level, as well as some injury and recovery advice. Ben also recently began coaching with a previous guest of ours on Episode 22, Victoria Phillippi with Run4PRs. Ben also tells us how he loves to give back to the running community and he’ll tell us about a nonprofit he launched in the twin cities of Minnesota called Rolling Thunder. Ben coaches athletes of all levels with custom plans. Be sure to listen for a special offer from Ben and Run4PRs.
Sasha Wolff started running in 2012 when her depression and anxiety flared up. She quickly fell in love with running and found that pushing herself and accomplishing goals helped her cope and manage her mental health challenges. Sasha recently started a group called Still I Run, that encourages people to run for their physical and mental health, raises awareness of mental health issues and seeks to stop the stigma surrounding mental health. Sasha tells us about the motivation behind this group, what it is all about, and explains what their logo means. She provides runners of all abilities helpful advice and reminds us that we are not alone, and there are communities like Still I Run that can help. You can purchase Still I Run products on their Etsy shop and find out more at their website.
Stacy Holden is a native Houstonian who discovered running at the early age of seven with her parents. At age 10, she was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes and used running as a way to manage her disease. Stacy ran her first marathon at the age of 12 and has run consistently ever since. Stacy recently published a book entitled People of Memorial Park: Stories From Houston's Favorite Trail. Her book beautifully shares 45 amazing stories of people who frequent the park and running trail. Stacy tells us about the inspiration for the book and her efforts collecting the stories. She also describes a few of the stories that not only entertain and educate but also inspire readers. Stacy challenges listeners to share their stories since everyone has a valuable story that can inspire and help others. Be sure to check out the book’s website where you can purchase the book.
Deyl Kearin returns to the Runified Podcast (previously on episode 16) after completing the Grand to Grand Ultra, a six-stage, 170-mile race, starting at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon in Arizona and finishing at the Grand Staircase in Utah. Deyl talks about this amazing running experience and how he uses his ability to run to improve the lives of others through Run4Poverty and Opportunity International. Opportunity International helps people in third world countries by providing significant microfinance loans. Deyl talks about how his family, friends, donors, training partners, and a random stranger Jonathan, all made his race possible. He also talks about how running ultra marathons for others enables him to connect with and help people around the world through the money he raises. Deyl would love to have others join him with Run4Poverty, so please, reach out to Deyl if you have any interest in using your running for something bigger than yourself. You can reach Deyl at email@example.com.
Shawanna White began running in high school and quickly found her passion. Her desire to keep improving has kept her running through the years. Shawanna loves racing everything from the 5K to the marathon and she working towards a goal of qualifying for the Olympic Trials for the marathon. Shawanna tells us about a significant injury that kept her away from running for 6 months and what made it possible for her to return to running stronger than ever. She also shares helpful advice for runners of all abilities. Shawanna’s positive attitude and energy are contagious and you’ll be sure to take something of value away from her interview. Shawanna is sponsored by Skechers Performance, Zensah, and Greenville Running Company.
Chris Sanders found running at an early age and was almost immediately drawn to the relationships and connections with his teammates. After running cross country in college, Chris gradually increased the distance he runs, having now completed 10 marathons as well as 3 Ironman races. Chris loves pushing the limits of his body and even races up skyscrapers! We talk with Chris about pushing the perceived physical limits of our bodies and how technology helps us connect with our body as well as others. Chris is passionate about connected health and how technology can enable us to not only understand more about our bodies but also engage us in our own health more. He mentions a handful of startups making a difference in this industry, such as humon, WHOOP, and HealthRhythms.
On this episode, host Matt Sorenson reflects on the recent Presidential election and the effects it is having. We as Americans are all different, but the common bond of running ties us together, making “we the runners” stronger as a group than any one of us individually. Running is a unique avenue or tool that has the amazing power to bring people together, as well as positively change individuals, communities, and the world. Matt reflects on personal experiences, the stories of previous podcast guests, and challenges the Runified Community with simple yet meaningful things they can do. This message revolves around the belief that running together, as well as running for others, can help heal, unify and strengthen our nation.
Victoria Phillippi started running in high school by simply running around the block in the neighborhood. In college, Victoria started running 5K races and ended up running on the cross country team. Her coach took a chance on her and taught her how to truly train, believed in her ability and opportunity to improve. Since then, Victoria has run 16 marathons and has qualified for the Boston Marathon 11 times with a personal record of 3:14. Victoria started coaching runners by helping her mom prepare for a 5K for her 50th birthday, and is now certified by the Road Runners Club of America. Through her business, Run4PRs, Victoria coaches athletes of all abilities with customized plans, helping runners reach their goals in a way that works with their lifestyle. Make sure you listen for a special offer Victoria is offering to our listeners.
Audrey Springer joins the Runified Podcast and tells us how she went from being a serious soccer player to a runner. Although she didn’t like running at first, she was drawn to the community and friendships. An unfortunate event also helped her realize that running was for something much bigger than herself. After college, Audrey decided to challenge herself with the marathon, a distance she idolized since childhood. She tells us how she recently qualified for the Boston Marathon and what she attributes this amazing accomplishment to, including an amazing running coach and training partner. Audrey also describes how she’s not a natural runner and gives advice for runners of all abilities. Her blog, Running the Alley, and Instagram account allow her to share her story and inspire others.
Runified Podcast host Matt Sorenson reflects on common themes that were present throughout the first 19 episodes of the Runified Podcast. He focuses the topics of community, running for others, overcoming obstacles, and entrepreneurship while including sound clips from each episode. This is a great chance to learn what Runified is all about! Our guests in the first 19 episodes are Guthrie Hood, Mike Thompson, Talaya Frazier, Ben Abell, Stephen Lease, Thom Singer, Yvonne Treviño Hayek, Anna Quinlan, Ty Reagan, Jennifer Fisher, Jenni Lord, Jim Hall, Gilbert Tuhabonye, Deyl Kearin, Emily Allport, and Mike Gitre. We chat about the marathon, half marathon, ultra marathons, trail running, injury, training, running advice, coaching, challenges in life, nutrition, and more.
On this episode of the Runified Podcast we talk with Mike Gitre about how he became a distance runner and how his running community and competitive personality have helped him recover from a very serious injury. Mike has a very unique perspective on recovering that runners of all abilities can learn from. Mike also shares stories about how his running community has been important to him in all aspects of life, including his most recent recovery process. Mike is an accomplished runner, having completed 10 marathons, including the Boston Marathon. He appreciates the unique nature of a running community and the strength and motivation that results.
Yvonne Treviño Hayek joins us again on the Runified Podcast! Yvonne originally talked with us back in episode 6 where we talked about her 20-year journey to the Olympics as a long jumper. In this episode, we talk with her about her experience in Rio and her performance. Yvonne provides some very helpful advice for runners of all abilities.
In this episode of the Runified Podcast we are joined by the one and only Emily Allport. Emily hails from San Diego California where she started her very own running group. She began running when she signed up on a whim for a half marathon, but was really drawn to the community of runners that she was a part of while training for her first race. The social aspect of running was what led her to start a running group in San Diego when she moved there. Starting with only one friend, she went on to attract an amazing group of women that has been there for each other in good times and bad. We talk with Emily about how this running group has positively impacted her life as well as others. Emily also gives runners some helpful advice.