Animal Athletics Blog
Thus far our Above the Clouds Mountaineering Training group (consisting of six badass friends and myself, Willie McBride) has gotten off to a great start. Besides our 90 minute weekly Tuesday torture (I mean training!) sessions we’ve gotten out to the mountains for two excellent adventures…and that’s just the beginning. The first outing was a nice jaunt up Larch Mountain from Wahkeena Falls (since the Benson Bridge at Multnomah Falls was still closed.) We were blessed with an incredible, sunny day and the group straight-up rocked it! Add some charcuterie and other deliciousness on the summit and you’ve got a damn fine time right there… Our second adventure was another huge success and was made even more fun by adding a mixture of other friends into the mix. All … Read the Rest.
Last year we did a great Community Adventure, heading out to our beloved Columbia Gorge for a snowy, 15.5 mile point to point route from Eagle Creek up and over the Benson Plateau to Cascade Locks. As always we felt very fortunate; the people we were with were just as wonderful and pleasing to be around as the stunning landscape. Here are the Faces from the Celebration:
Week 3 of boot camp and I am finally starting to get used to being up a 5:50 AM. It has been a struggle the first two weeks but this week I woke up ready for the day. Doing these boot camps every Wednesday has made me appreciate being up so early. I get to see the sun rising over the city on my drive home from boot camp. It’s nice that by 7:30 I’m ready for the day and already had my workout. This week Yassine was nice enough to not make us do laps around the block due to the inclement weather. The wind was piercing through my body and I had two layers of clothing on. Therefore, instead, we started the workout with complete full body stretches. Just doing the stretches makes me nervous for the workout … Read the Rest.
I am not sure how I made it out of bed this second time around… I knew I was about to put my body through some much needed exercise that I had been neglecting for awhile. The first time I met with Yassine and Willie they told me wanted to convince the people they train that most exercises, and surely endurance running, are more mental than physical. I told myself “get up, you have to go and you will feel better after.” As I arrived at the training space people were already running out the door. I went to put my water bottle and keys down and Yassine instructed me to catch up with the group. What a perfect idea to start your day, two laps around the block. I don’t think it’s a normal block either, I think the … Read the Rest.
I am going to attempt to recall and articulate my “vision-quest-of-a-race” down in Hawaii this past January 18-19, 2014. There is so much time in 100-milers to think about life, to reflect, and to celebrate what we love. There are also times where you think about rational choices and decisions you are making. You know…that little voice in the back of your head? Although sometimes thinking too much- being too “cerebral”, can actually be your worst enemy in ultra running. In these endurance events you have to turn off the rational mind. Often times you have to lie to yourself, constantly talk positively to yourself, visualize, and break the race down into smaller, more digestible chunks. You have to also remind yourself how good it feels to cross the finish line of a 100-miler, and how hollow you feel when … Read the Rest.
I grew up on PB&J’s. Let’s put it this way, I’m still growing up! A staple food and one of my favorites is nut butter, and I never knew how important a role it would play in my life! Even though I’ve been eating it for a couple years now, in the winter and spring of 2013 I started regularly taking a great product called Trail Butter, a company based out of Portland, Oregon. In June, one of the generous and likeable owners, Jeff Boggess, handed us a handful of pouches for our Animal Athletics RV road trip to California for the 2013 Western States 100-mile Endurance Run. Before and during the race I would take small bites out of the portable tube of this tasty, slow-burning fuel. However, what happened to me after the race is what’s most remarkable. … Read the Rest.
For the next ten weeks, PSU Business student Kelly Rodela will be attending Animal Athletics weekly 6:30 AM boot camps on Wednesdays at the Float Shoppe’s wonderful new space on the corner of NW 23rd and Quimby. Here’s what Kelly has to say: “When I first agreed to go to the boot camps I didn’t believe that I would be the regular type of character attending them. I am not in as great of shape as I used to be. I am an ex football player and ultra running sounds terrible to a guy like me. I figured that when I showed up, there would be a group of all guys with zero body fat and Camelbacks waiting for me at the door. As you may of guessed, the previous night I had been dreading waking up before 6 … Read the Rest.
Somebody pump the brakes! HURT 100, held on the Hawaiian island of Oahu, is quickly approaching it’s start day/time of 6 a.m. Saturday January 18, 2014. In the ultra running community this race is known to be one of the more rugged and difficult events for several different reasons. Here are a few: 24,000 feet of climbing and 24,000 feet of descending in the mountainous jungles of Hawaii. The course is 99% singletrack trail and has many gnarly root sections, rocks, mud, stream crossings. Heat and humidity of Hawaii in January can be a challenge for runners…This year it looks like a high of 80 low of 60 at night. The course is very mentally challenging as well. It is the same 20-mile section that runners have to complete five times! Ultrasportslive.tv will be down there covering the race if … Read the Rest.
It’s only January 6th and we’ve already been having a great time getting out on our local Mt. Hood. A few of us got up there for sunrise on New Year’s Day and then Brian Donnelly and I made it to the summit on Saturday the 4th (check out his pictures!) Then more skinning…and skiing the next day…and good peeps. The weather was ridiculously nice, sunny as could be and just a bit chilly. It’s a damn good start to the year I’d say… Come on out and get some! Happy New Year!
This past Saturday, December 7th we held our second annual Western States 100 Lottery Party at the Friendly House in NW Portland and it was a great success! Three lucky people in attendance–Jason Leman, Shane Kroth, and Paul Nelson–won spots into the “Big Dance” and will be heading down to Squaw Valley, California come late June to tear it up! It was a great excuse to get everyone together, catch up, share inspirations for the coming year, eat some tasty food, drink coffee, and celebrate all the awesome folks in our amazing community. A big thank you to everyone who came, those who helped out, brought food or refreshments, or just stopped by to say hello! If you were in the lottery but didn’t get picked, there’s always next year. If you did get picked…Congrats! Now get training and make … Read the Rest.