Vegan Ultra Runner

Can a middle aged, slighty overweight smoker run 50 miles…Did I mention I was vegan?

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Head Over Feet

Today I sat and began a post about attitudes, empathy and compassion. Needless to say it is on the serious side of things. About half way through I decided that I couldn’t be that serious today, so I’ll have to finish it another day. Writing about empathy and compassion got me to thinking about my wife though. She is a wonderful person, with a great heart, and is always concerned about other people.I’m lucky enough to have been married to her for over fifteen years. She’s a wonderful mother and always supports me know matter how crazy I might sound (50 mile trail run). I recorded this for her a few years ago and I can’t help but think of her every time I hear this song. I love this song and I love you Janet.


Can a middle aged, slighty overweight smoker run 50 miles…Did I mention I was vegan?

What do you do when you’re a 44-year-old husband and father of four and find that you have to make some drastic lifestyle changes?  You’ve smoked for almost 30 years and your blood pressure has rocketed to 180/117. You’ve inched your way to being 20 lbs overweight and your cholesterol levels are in a such state of denial that even Lance Armstrong and Pete Rose are telling you to come clean. What do you do? You do like all the other middle-aged, mid-life-crisis, superhero-in-your-mind men do. You swear off meat, and sign up for a 50 mile trail race. Seems obvious to me.

So first off, it’s time to be completely honest about the name of this blog. I’m not actually an “ultra runner”. Not yet anyway.  As a matter of fact the longest race I’ve completed is a 10k. The longest run I’ve ever made was 10 miles, but that was two years ago. So what makes me think I can run 50 miles? I want to run 50 miles. I’m going to try to run 50 miles. I don’t know that I truly believe I can run 50 miles. That’s something I hope to discover over the next few months.

The other thing is that term “Vegan”. In June I decided to give up all animal products, in my diet at least. I’m not sure why I initially gave up meat. I was probably just desperate to stay off the medicines that the doctor has tried to get me on for years. As I began reading things, such as The China Study and Forks Over Knives I began to see the health benefits of a plant-based diet. I also read things by super human athletes such as Brendon Brazier, Rich Roll and the GREAT Scott Jurek. Obviously I’m a big fan of Scott’s, although my wife says that Rich Roll is my “man crush”. I don’t think he is…I don’t have a man crush… well… maybe… I mean… Look at him! So anyway, I’m really about 98% plant-based. I still have to have cheese on pizza, and my wife’s wonderful lasagna, which she started making with spinach just for me.

So this is the wacked out veggie trip that is part of my life right now. I plan to document it, even if it is just for me. I hope to come out on the other side as some type of super-human running machine, or at least still be able to walk. I’m guessing the odds are about 50/50 either way. So whether you’re the type of person that believes in the greatness of the human spirit, or just a sadist who likes to watch people fail miserably, stay tuned. There should be enough for both.

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