Animal Athletics Blog
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.
This past weekend a group of Animals convened in the Mt. Margaret Backcountry for a Sunday romp up Coldwater Peak. We weren’t the only animals out there; we ran paralleling great herds of elk, saw them throughout the day and heard their bizarre, high-pitched squeaking cries. It was an amazing time in one of the “gems” of the PNW and we didn’t see another person the entire time!…just us and the true locals, sharing a lovely November day. Enjoy the photos, writing coming soon! … Read the Rest.
It is our distinct pleasure at Animal Athletics to work with Sarah Duncan and count her as a good friend and one of our most loyal clients. She’s a great athlete too–a tough and tenacious mountain warrior–and an integral part of the wonderful trail & ultra running community here in Portland. Thank you for being you, and for being an inspiration to so many! Keep up the great work! Here’s what she has to say after a string of awesome accomplishments: “2013 has been an incredible year. I look back and it’s hard to believe everything that happened to me. I had numerous PR’s all the way from 5k to half marathon to 50 miles. One of the highlights was the Mt Hood 50 miler in July where I course PR’d from the prior year by an hour and 45 … Read the Rest.
It can be hard to tell the difference between a fish testing your bait and the sensation of that bait bumping against the rocks of a shallow river. When a fish does take a bite and the hook sets in though, there’s no question what’s on the other end of the line. There is a pulsing energy in the rocks and flowing water but not the same kind you feel from an animal that suddenly finds itself fighting for its life. The fish knows and you know; a collective consciousness is formed, two beings tethered together. I learned the difference quickly. We had just pulled the drift boat over for lunch to the sandy shore of the Klickitat River in Southern Washington on a sunny, late October day. Matt, an aspiring ultra marathon runner that I … Read the Rest.
I laid on the cot and drifted in and out of napping because I was tired already from the weekend. Some of the runners who came through thought I was a fellow racer and that I was injured and dropping out. I wasn’t injured, just cold and damp and somewhat bored out in the dark woods under an event tent set to half height in the midst of a monsoon. Bryce and Heather sat in chairs across from me; music played from the small speakers on the iPhone and the bourbon was gone. The sound of the storm was constant and my sleeping bag was wet but it didn’t matter anymore, I kept it around me regardless. Miserable but fun…that about sums it up. We were happy to serve the ultra marathoning, trail running community. Crazy group of freaks that … Read the Rest.
Before September 2013 Patagonia was a cool company and a logo on my jacket. I knew that it was a far-away place that many outdoor adventurers visit, but honestly didn’t think I’d get the opportunity to travel there (especially for running) at this stage in my life. How did I get so lucky?! I’ll tell you. The Chilean Board of Tourism and the event organizers made it possible for some athletes to come down to promote the growth of the race, and the inaugural 63k distance of this 2nd year event. Grateful and honored I accepted the offer, but even after I arrived to the southern tip of Chile (after a very long journey!) I could not believe I was actually there staring at the majestic mountains and lakes. It was surreal for sure! On Friday we all made it … Read the Rest.
The 2013 Patagonian International Marathon held in Chile is quickly approaching it’s second year (& inaugural year for the 63k ultra marathon distance). I am very excited and honored to be toeing the start-line for the point-to-point ultra marathon through one of the most picturesque and diverse places on this planet; Torres del Paine National Park. Aside from visiting & running in this magnificent area being a draw, I was struck by the mission of this growing event. The organizers are calling the world’s attention to the conservation of Chilean Patagonia, and to the sustainable development of the region. For every entrant in the race one tree will be donated to a campaign that ultimately has the goal of planting one million trees in the Patagonia region (Click HERE to read more). In addition to that, in an attempt to reduce … Read the Rest.
When I was in my mid-twenties I was coming off of a “few year run” of rarely taking care of my body. I lived and played hard, and only rested when I was “beaten into submission” and forced there. Introspection of my thoughts and actions were pretty much non-existent, and I was quickly getting “backed into a corner”. In 2004, after making some major changes in my life, I met a smart, sweet, caring woman named Erica. We had some things in common and Erica was a really good influence on me. She invited me to some of the “Satsang” gatherings she was attending (and sometimes thoughtfully facilitating), and I was open-minded and curious to what they entailed. Okay, I was mostly interested in Erica, but I was willing to give anything that was new and positive an honest effort. … Read the Rest.
What in the heck is all this talk about the “Larry Slam?” We’ve heard of “The Grand Slam of UltraRunning” (a lot lately!), which is something that even most seasoned ultra runners can’t wrap their heads around. “The Grand Slam” involves completing four of the oldest 100-milers in the nation (Western States 100, Vermont 100, Leadville 100, Wasatch 100) all within the same summer (10 weeks). Yes…10 weeks! Just this year (2013) a couple of our friends (Ian Sharman & Nick Clark) duked it out all the way to the end of the final race at Wasatch 100 to ultimately lower the “fastest known combined time” of the Grand Slam. It was unbelievable that the two amazing runners were less than one hour apart (Read Ian Sharman’s report HERE). Up here in the “Great Pacific Northwest” an “Animal Athlete” and … Read the Rest.
This past Sunday morning my friend Matt and I and his buddy’s dog Gus set off on a little one-night backpacking trip. I had gone back and forth a hundred times about where to go–Goat Rocks, Mt. Margaret Backcountry, Olympic National Park–before deciding to keep the driving time short and embrace our backyard beauty of the Columbia Gorge. I’d been wanting to get up Indian Mountain for some time and so it seemed like a perfect objective for a short trip. We left from Eagle Creek on Sunday morning at 10 and started things off with a nice big climb up Ruckel Creek trail to the Benson Plateau. Our packs were relatively light, but not overly so as we were stocked up with plenty of real food and a few beers. We hiked along, jogging a few sections here … Read the Rest.