Where are you from and where do you live now?
I grew in Minooka, IL, which is a suburb of Chicago. Last fall, my wife and I moved to Tahoe Vista!
When did you begin running and/or long-distance running, if that applies? Why?
I ran my first half marathon in 2011, first marathon in 2012, and first ultra in 2014. It was a slippery slope for me, and I was continually pushed by the mindset of “what else is my body capable of?”
Do you race? Does racing motivate you? if not racing, what motivates you?
I love to race. I’ve found that 100-milers are my bread and butter. My career highlight to this point is a first place overall in the 4Deserts Gobi March 250km stage race.
Do you have any dream races (either hoping to qualify for or get selected for)?
I’ve entered the Western States lottery two years in a row and I’m hoping year three is the lucky one for me! My other two biggest dream races are UTMB and Marathon des Sables.
Do you have a favorite on-trail food or nutrition strategy? Favorite post-run meal or beverage?
My on-trail nutrition strategy is to eat and drink way before I’m hungry and thirsty. I’m fortunate to have a pretty iron stomach during races, which allows me to consume whatever my body is craving. My favorite post-run meal is, without a doubt, pizza and beer.
What was your favorite running experience this past year?
My favorite running experience this past year was finishing second overall at the Burning River 100 in Ohio. It was my first ultra in several months, and my fastest mile splits happened in the final 25 miles of the race.
What was your most challenging/ character-building experience this past year?
Running across the US on foot. It took me 60 days to cover 2,500 miles (finishing in April of 2016), and I was in pain for most of it as a result of several injuries. That experience taught me so much.
What are your upcoming racing/adventure plans?
I have a handful of ultras on the agenda this year, and I will be crossing the UK on foot with a friend in July and early August!
What do you do for a living? Is it hard to fit in time for training?
I am a motivational speaker, which gives me a lot of flexibility for training purposes!
What led you to join the DPMR?
After my wife and I moved out here, I couldn’t wait to get connected to the local runners!
What has been your favorite DPMR experience so far?
Just meeting some of the DPMR members! I can’t wait to start running with everyone!
Favorite local trail?
Still exploring the area and trying to figure that out! I’ve probably run on the Legacy Trail the most, simply due to the insane snowfall preventing me from exploring other trails.
What other outdoor or indoor interests do you have?
I absolutely love to travel and see new places. Pretty much any activity in an outdoor setting will make me happy!
Any interesting facts about yourself you would like to share?
I arrived in Tahoe Vista about a month after my wife, because I was in South America competing on a Discovery Channel reality television show called The Wheel. Of the six contestants, I was one of the two who conquered The Wheel and lasted a full 60 days in the wilderness!