Bam Garcia is a husband, father, UPS truck driver, and all around great guy from Tyler, Texas. Bam’s competitive and addictive personality got the best of him when he was in his early twenties and he struggled with addiction for 15 years. After a friend introduced him to running in the fall of 2014 he quickly realized running is where he needed to be. Bam shares how running has helped him replace a destructive addition with a constructive one, and how he achieved his goal of going from the couch to losing fifty pounds and running the Boston Marathon. Bam describes how he loves to give back to the running community by encouraging others via social media and meeting new people at every race he runs. Listen as he provides helpful training advice and motivates our community to have a whatever it takes attitude.
Keighly Rector is a lawyer, proud cat mom, and former competitive Irish step dancer from New York. While Keighly started running while in law school as a form of stress relief, she also found that running helped with her long-term battle with an eating disorder. Keighly opens up and shares how running and a reframed view of fitness and nutrition has helped her develop a positive relationship with her own body. With a balanced and holistic approach to training, fitness, nutrition; she finds herself stronger and faster, but more importantly, with decreased disorder behaviors and less anxiety and depression. Keighly is a recently Boston Marathon qualifier and provides helpful advice and encouragement to our listeners, focusing on listening to your body and taking the time to care for yourself.
Runified Podcast host Matt Sorenson reflects on common themes that were present throughout the last 30 episodes of the Runified Podcast. He focuses the topics of the Boston Marathon, training, diversity, veterans, overcoming obstacles, epic adventures, and changing lives with running. This is a great chance to learn what Runified is all about! Our guests in the past 30 episodes are Audrey Springer, Victoria Phillippi, Chris Sanders, Shawanna White, Deyl Kearin, Stacy Holden, Sasha Wolff, Ben Jacobs, Kim Eagle, Arne Robertson, Marcel van der Kuil, Steph Cash Hogan, Martinus Evans, Bill O’Shields, Kate McKenzie, Martin Parnell, Thom Singer, BethAnn Telford, Ben Luke Smith, Nico Ericksen-Deriso, Mark Sutcliffe, Martina O’Connell, Bonnie Yesian, Eric Spears, Zuleyma Chazari, Adele Garcia, and Andy Cloud. We chat about the marathon, half marathon, ultramarathons, trail running, injury, training, running advice, coaching, challenges in life, mental health, education, technology, nutrition, and more.
Andy Cloud is a 39-year-old family man from Carthage, MO. When he’s not busy with his job, family, church, or other hobbies, he can be found running around southwest Missouri competing in everything from 5Ks to ultramarathons, but this wasn’t always the case. About five years ago Andy was very overweight, pre-diabetic, and had other health issues such as sleep apnea. He realized that he needed to change something. Though his faith, community, and inspiration from the 2013 Boston Marathon, Andy found the courage and discipline to improve his lifestyle. Andy shares how changes in his eating habits, exercising and connecting with other people enabled him to make this significant change in his life, losing over 130 pounds. He encourages our listeners to lean on others and your community, reminding us that running and life are hard and we don’t need to do it alone. Andy gives back to the running community by being a co-host of the Heartland Running Podcast and a race director for the Rallye 66 5K and Ranger Run benefiting Peterson Outdoor Ministries.
Adele Garcia lives in Michigan and started running in high school but never really liked it. After being injured by a roadside bomb while serving in the Army, Adele returned home with post-traumatic stress and survivor's guilt. She grew to love running as she found it to be an effective tool for channeling the negative energy and stress in a positive way. Adele has since run marathons and ultramarathons, as well as used running for more than just herself, including starting an event called Upward Spiral, a 24-hour run/walk to raise awareness around depression, self-harm, suicide, bullying, and mental health. She shares her inspiration behind starting Upward Spiral, the impact they have made so far, and her dreams for the program’s future. If you enjoy this episode, make sure to listen to Episode 28 with Sasha Wolff from Still I Run.
Zuleyma Chazari is a hardworking student who is currently a biology major and junior at the University of Southern California. One of the ways she learned the power of hard work and setting goals was by training for and running her first marathon at the age of 12 with help from the Students Run LA program. Zuleyma tells us how the program and becoming a runner helped her become more socially and culturally aware since she was able to interact with some many different types of people while training and racing. Students Run LA and running has provided Zuleyma confidence and friends who are more like a family to her. Now having run seven marathons with the program, Zuleyma also gives back to the program by volunteering her own time to help students become who they want to be and to succeed in life and to make sure they know someone believes in them. If you want to learn more about the Students Run LA program, be sure to listen to the previous episode, 47, with one the founders Eric Spears.
Eric Spears started running by tagging along with his father as he was getting back to health after a heart attack, training for a 5K. Even though while as a kid he thought he would die when having to run the mile, it was children who inspired him to become a marathoner. While as a high school teacher in Los Angeles, he and a couple other teachers wanted to find a way to help at-risk kids. They started Students Run LA, a program that uses running to help students with character building and goal setting, by training for and running the Los Angeles Marathon. What started as a humble program has now grown to a program serving 175 schools. Eric tells us why he is so passionate about this program and how running has changed over 63,000 students lives, as well as his own.
On this episode, host Matt Sorenson talks with three people he met while in Boston for the 2017 Boston Marathon. Listen as Jonathan “Scooby” Bolha, Jessica Marlier, and Kojo Kyereme tell Matt about their plans for the race and what Boston means for them. Matt also reflects on his own race and shares how previous Runified Podcast guests fared, such as Audrey Springer (episode 21), Steph Cash Hogan (episode 33), Bonnie Yessian (episode 45), and BethAnn Telford (episodes 39 and 40).
Bonnie Yesian started running in order to stay healthy when she started college, and gradually increased mileage up to the marathon. Having now run 21 marathons, Bonnie has learned a lot about running and training. Bonnie shares how she first learned about and qualified for the Boston Marathon, and shares some stories about past races. Having now completed 10 Boston Marathons, and preparing for 11th in 2017, Bonnie provides our listeners some advice on qualifying for Boston and training for this amazing race! Bonnie trains with Gilbert’s Gazelles, a running group in Austin, TX.
Martina O’Connell started running in her teens as a way to deal with stress and feel good. Little did she know that this would increase over the years and turn into marathons and now trail running and ultra marathon distances. We talk with Martina about how she loves the sense of adventure while running, and we even chat about porcupines. Martina shares how she finds balance with her very busy life, which also includes her five boys, her husband, and a full-time job. As she is currently battling significant injuries, Martina tells us how she stays motivated while she can’t run. Martina also inspires runners to have fun while they run and encourages them to not wait till they find the perfect time to run.
At the age of 30, Mark Sutcliffe began to run to get in better shape and because he was bored of working out in the gym. For years, Mark worked towards a goal of qualifying for the Boston Marathon, which he accomplished in the 20th marathon he ran. Mark shares his running journey and the history of the Boston Marathon in his book, Long Road to Boston. We also learn about the magazine and podcast Mark started, iRun, as well as a story about Mark running with author Malcolm Gladwell. Mark also shares running advice, training inspiration, and a challenge for the Runified community.
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.
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.