Nico Ericksen-Deriso is a senior at Case Western Reserve University, where he runs track and field. His grandfather helped him discover running at the early age of four by running the Bolder Boulder 10K in Colorado and his love of exploration has led him trail running and running longer distances. Nico shares stories about his running experiences as well as the inspiration behind The Running Road Trip, in which Nico and his friends are planning to run in all 48 contiguous states to raise money for Cure Alzheimer's Fund, a nonprofit funding research with the highest probability of preventing, slowing, or reversing Alzheimer’s disease. Listen as Nico also provides advice and challenges for runners of all abilities. Nico will join the Runified podcast again after the Running Road Trip takes place.
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.