Running is like a game, comfort and trail running talk with Scott Jurek!

Our best attempt of a selfie after my run this morning.  Knox was busy measuring things around the house but I’m glad he took a break for a picture together.

I could not believe the weather this morning.  Sixty degrees on November 16th.  It is supposed to get cold starting tomorrow so I made sure to soak up one of my last shorts and tank top runs of the year.  I took yesterday off from running and so my legs felt pretty fresh and wanting to try another eight mile progressive run.

Splits:  7:52, 7:48, 7:31, 7:26, 7:17, 7:13, 7:08, 6:51 and an average pace of 7:24. I think one of the things I love the most about progressive runs is that it turns my run into a game.  A mile beeps on my watch and for the next mile I am doing my best to go faster than I did for the previous mile.  It keeps the number lover inside of my brain content for the run.

Andrew knew where I was out for my run (I drove to a flat path) so he came and found me to say hi real quick!  It made me happy to see them.

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PS this picture is from November 16th last year… just a little bit colder.


Just the usual morning pep talk for Beretta.

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Back to the Transformers costume today.  Look how handsome he is with that haircut!

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After my run, Brooke did her best to show me her cat impersonations.

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And I ate this in two seconds flat after finishing up my stretching/planks.

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This always makes me happy to see.

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The kids are in constant hide and go seek mode over here.

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Brooke fell in the hallway.   She had me kiss her hand better and then she went to Beretta for comfort. Beretta goes to our blankets for comfort.

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Sweet potato bowls for lunch.  Cooked them in the microwave and then put them in with chicken, peppers, corn and salsa (basically sweet potato nachos… we are addicted).

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Last week I got to do a google hangout with Scott Jurek!!! The chat had me googling trail races in my area next spring after I got off the call with him!

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One of the very most amazing things that he has done was completing The Appalachian Trail… in 46 days.  464,500 ft of elevation gain and loss…. HOLY COW!  The trail goes through 14 different states too!   Doing this trail is equivalent elevation wise to climbing Mt. Everest 16 times.   I can’t even imagine.

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I tried to take as many notes as I could while we talked with him so I could share some of his thoughts with you!

*Trail running is cross training for your running.  You gain strength and power from the uphills and downhills and uneven surfaces.  It is also easier on the body!  Wherever you can get on dirt or green spaces or trails, do it!  Even if it is just for a few miles.

*For new trail runners:  If you are worried about spraining an ankle while out there on the trails then try to keep a high stride rate (85-90 strides per minute) so that you can react to changes in the trail (root, rocks etc) quickly.  A high stride rate lowers your chances of falling.  You can build strength in your ankles and feet by getting on a pillow or wobble board.  Stand on one foot at a time for 30 seconds and balance there with your eyes closed (and increase time as you get stronger)!

*DO NOT BE AFRAID TO WALK!!  Power hike.. you do not have to run the entire time.

*He is all about eating real food while he is out on his trail runs… he loves a bean and rice burrito or a sweet potato at the top of a mountain.  He recommends bringing foods that you crave!  He also mentioned bringing rice balls along with him which sounds like a great idea to me.

*Get spikes for your shoes if you want to keep trail running through the winter!

*Can’t make it up to the trails often and you still want to train for a trail race?  Scott recommended to train on the roads  like a marathoner during the week and then to hit the hills on the weekend.  He also said that incline treadmill running is great for training too!  He uses the roads for speed work and typical marathon training type workouts (tempo, 1000s, mile repeats, intervals etc) and then is up in the mountains for the weekend!

*Scott loves to focus on the micro goals.  He told us to avoid getting bogged down by the sheer distance, focus on the manageable goals, break them down!  He also recommended tuning into the present moment, focusing on our breathing technique, stride rate and to focus on all of the little things!

*He wears the Mazama (he had been wanting a lightweight trail shoes for a long time now), the Grit and Cascadias for his trail shoes (he helped develop some of these shoes and he is most proud of his help with the Cascadias).

*He loves to have an intention for each and every run.  What are you offering your practice (just like they do in yoga… do this in running too:)  Run for somebody that is ill, a cause, a goal, a person, a prayer etc.

*The accomplishment he is proud of the most was back in 2010.  The race was a 1 mile loop for 24 hours…. he ran just over 165 loops that day and set the American record at the time.  He ran for his mother, she had passed away just a few months prior.

*He has been running ultras for over 22 years now and he says he is really looking forward to some big adventure runs in 2017!  He and his wife just had a baby this year!


Who has done an ultra?  A trail race?  Have any tips?  What was your experience?

Who eats real food while they are running?  Dates, sandwiches, burritos, rice balls, pb, granola bars?  What do you take?  

How soon after your morning run do you eat?  Is it hard for you to eat right after a run?

How are you spending your Wednesday evening?

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I usually eat fairly quickly after shorter runs but double digit runs leave me a bit off for an hour and then I am starving.

Designing an email for a client tonight and then gonna watch some HGTV to zone out. Oh and I’ll be stretching my hamstrings too!


The weather has been ridiculously nice the past 2 weeks. Ross went into work late this morning just so he could get in one more mountain bike ride before the weather gets cold. #priorities I can feel the temps dropping by the hour though, so I guess he was smart.

We will be spending the evening at Evan’s basketball game. It will definitely the most entertaining hour of my day:)


When I lived in Cleveland I would do shorter trail races and LOVED them. I’m in a flat place without any trails at the moment.
I generally don’t eat because I don’t run very far but I’m pretty positive that I could eat a plain ego at any moment.
I have no trouble eating ever.
Wednesday evenings are BUSY! Scouts and activity days plus two little ones in tow!


I LOVE Scott! His book Eat and Run inspired me TO run again!


That is so cool you got to chat with Scott!! He lives near me in Boulder, CO and his instagrams always show him running the local trails and I am hoping I will run into him someday!! Since I broke my collarbone mtn biking, I have been trail running a lot the past 6 weeks and now I am considering my first trail race in Jan/Feb. I am spending my Wednesday evening going to the 12th session of a faith based parenting class…because I need all the help I can get!


So cool! He makes me what to magically heal my foot so I can get back to the trails ASAP!


Scott Jurek is such an amazing human. I met him last year and he is such an inspiration. His book Eat and Run is a great read and I highly recommend it. This makes me want to move back to Park City for trail running although running every day in Central Park is fun too! My problem is not getting enough calories before my long runs but no problem eating after.


I am pretty hungry after a run so I eat pretty soon after! I am spending my evening wrapping Christmas presents and ordering Christmas cards!! Getting ahead of the game this year! :)


Thanks for sharing these tips. I’ve always wanted to trail run but it has intimidated me after I tore a tendon in my foot hiking.


JANAE!!!!!!!!!! I know jealousy isn’t a good look on anyone, but I AM SO JEALOUS that you got to do a chat with Scott Jurek! He has been my running idol since I first read his book in 2013, and he’s the reason why I really really want to do a 50 miler someday! I wish I could do a 100 but I am way too slow and would never make the cut off … plus I would probably crumple up and die along the course haha!


I love Scott Jurek. His book Eat and Run is one of my favorite books ever…it also contains the recipe for the best veggie chili ever. Yum. I did a trail half marathon this year–it was a fun challenge, I would definitely recommend! I’m not sure if I’d ever be up for an ultra though. I listen to Ten Junk Miles a lot (podcast), and all of those guys participate in ultras…it sounds extremely exciting, but so difficult!


Wow that is nice! It was snowing up here today!! I am doing an injured workout while in a boot. hahah Thank goodness for youtube! It is so hard for me to eat after a run but I always force myself to because I see a world of difference in my recovery!


Reading Eat and Run finally pushed me over the edge into racing and running longer distances after seeing all the miles he was burning up in training. Very awesome to get those tips straight from the source! Living in Seattle, I need to follow his lead and get out to the Issaquah Alps and work those trails. For me though, I’m normally using to find a long, soft trail with minimal road crossings to get my long runs in on the weekends. Lots of great trails on that site.


How fun that you got to chat with Scott Jurek. He seems like a really great guy, and is obviously a super talented runner.

I’ve done one 50k (Flagline 50k in Bend, Oregon), and the altitude and elevation change were really challenging. But honestly, since the pace was slower, it felt much easier and more fun than a road marathon. Plus it was so so pretty.


SO awesome that you got to chat with Scott Jurek!! I met him several times when I was in Seattle years ago…I ran 3 consecutive Seattle marathons and he was working in a running store. He’s SO nice and easy to talk to, ( just like all runners ) .

I’ve ran 15 ultra’s…one 100 K, four 50 milers and ten 50 K’s. All of them were on trails and during ultra’s I always eat real food.


Scott Jurek! So so so cool! I remember reading about him in Runner’s World a couple years ago and being blown away. So awesome that you got to talk with him!

I need to get some sweet potatoes. I forget how much I love them till I see one of your posts.


Scott Jurek is amazing. I’ve been loosely following him for years and love his outlook. Trail running is the best. This summer when we were home for our stateside visit my brother and I did a lot of adventure trail running. He had many routes selected and the best was him checking the shade percentage (he knows I hate heat and having sun in my eyes). The last run we did was a 26 mile run in the Gorge and we did some of the PCT trail. 5000ft elevation involved, lots of log crossing (and skimming under) a few soaks in water holes, springs crossings and amazing views. This summer I had a record in mileage thanks to all these great trail runs plus some wonderful road runs (Portland is our stateside home city) along the waterfront and Terwilliger.

Real food is great but it takes practice for sure. I have a sorbitol and fructose intolerance so many energy bars and gels don’t jive with me. On long runs that are over 15 miles I enjoy noshing on dates, cashews, Qi’a bars, pre-toasted peanut butter and banana sandwiches (or almond butter), goldfish crackers or pretzels, homemade energy balls with nutbutter, chia seeds, coconut, oats and rice syrup (I don’t do too much honey), and cubes of steamed sweet potatoes. I almost mashed some with a bit of butter and put in a baggy because I thought that would be tasty, too! I have a cookbook that has a lot of great rice ball recipes. Great ideas in there!

I need to try Brooks line of trail shoes.

I try to eat within 30 minutes of my run-even if it’s a banana on my way home from work-I run right after work before heading home.

Wednesday was a day off from running so I took a yoga class because I am so restless on my rest days. Makes no sense, does it! I have to say, many of my aches and pains dissipated after that yoga class.


I LOVED reading the real foods that you eat while out on the run… thank you for sharing! I might need to get your homemade energy ball recipe:) You are inspiring me to get out for some yoga to help with any aches. Your runs this summer sound AMAZING!!! 26 miles in the Gorge… sounds crazy hard but perfect!


Janae! I am craving sweet potato nachos for days now thanks to you!! Everytime you post a picture of your meal I am reminded to try them for our dinner as well… I need to go to the grocery store this evening I guess :D

I did a few trail runs in the past winters, mainly because I love the mood in snowy forests and the tracks offer more stable running conditionns compared to icy roads. I’m pretty sure I will do that again the next few months on Saturdays. However, I urgently need someone to run with me as I ALWAYS get lost somewhere (event though I ran this route more than a dozen times…well, I planned to run the exact route it but failed)

Regarding post-run meals: I actually practice something similar to “intermittent fasting”. Not conciously in the first place, but my daily routine evolved to this behaviour in the last few years. I always run in the morning (no breakfast) and my first meal will be something in the late afternoon. This is due to a lot of struggles with meals when I started running. I always suffered from nausea as soon as I ran after eating something 2-3 hours before a run, as well as I was unable to tolerate food a few hours after the run as well… But according to recent studies, this practice can improve your running, as it increases the fat-burning capacity of the muscles and therefore increases endurance. So, I guess subconciously I do something right.


I LOVE SCOTT JUREK! That’s so awesome you got to talk to him! My husband and I read his book during our Ultra training 3 (?!) years ago and really focused on the eating portion. We packed hummus wraps and made his recipe for spicy cocoa nib date balls instead of relying on Gu’s and bars–it seriously helped during those LONG training days, especially because my stomach has never liked the fake stuff. I’ve always been a terrible eater before, during and after running, and it’s something I’m really focused on now. Seems obvious, but fueling your body the right way directly impacts the quality of your running. :)


Out of curiosity – you all seem to eat a lot of chicken – do you just make a bunch at the beginning of the week, and eat it throughout? I do a lot of food prep, so I’m always looking for tips – your “throw together” meals always look DELICIOUS.


Hey Amy! YES YES YES!!! Andrew will grill about 3 days worth of chicken for the both of us so that it is super easy to just toss on our meals! Give me any of your tips too hahaha… we are trying to get better at food prep:) Enjoy your Thursday!


Oh man … I love trail running! I’m fortunate enough to live in WA and can find some amazing trails just minutes away and when/if I want a challenge, I take a quick-ish drive to the mountains for serious elevation … it’s the best whole body therapy ever! I’ve done a 5k, half marathon and 30k trail race and I’m working up to perhaps a 50k … I haven’t even ran a road marathon before but that’s the best thing about trail running … walking is more accepted! I train on the treadmill and road and hit the trails on the weekends. Not enough for my taste but I’ll take it!
Trails take a lot out of you … so much so that I eat a lot before I run, during the run and then I’m starving afterwards for hours and hours. Good thing I love to eat! If I do the 50k though I’m already planning on bringing sandwiches, huma, tailwind, dates, anything that won’t give me a side ache that will power me through.


Love this – and to brag on my brother for a second. He hiked the Appalachian Trail in 2015 in 100 days, which, for not running, is pretty speedy. And then hiked the Pacific Crest Trail during the summer of 2016. So I love reading about others who have done the same.

I ran my first trail race in August & I am hooked. I do a lot of what Scott said. Run normally – and fit in trails when I can. Sometimes that’s the weekends, sometimes it’s a quick run after work. Harder now that it gets dark so early, but it’s definitely something I try to find time for.


HA – it is NEVER hard for me to eat after a run. I am all about real food while training. I really like dates.

I had done a couple ultras but my absolute favourite is the Transrockies 120 miler in Colorado. I LOVED IT.


So cool that you talked to Scott Jurek, he’s super inspiring. Thanks for sharing! I live in the mountains so almost all my runs are trail runs. Shalane’s cookbook Run Fast Eat Slow has a great recipe for energy balls.


I haven’t done my own ultra or trail race but I have crewed two of my friends who do ultra and ultra-trails! I put in up to 10 miles with them at a time and help manage their supplies when I’m not out with them on foot. We also do a 100 mile relay with that group of friends every year.

I’ll eat real food before any run (I have to fuel or my blood sugar plummets) and in between segments of the ultra. I avoid anything with bread as it feels like it expands in your stomach. I like deli turkey for protein! And I’m going to try dates stuffed with nut butter this season. But I like any fruits, honey, whole grain breakfast crackers (like Bel-vita or the new natures own one), potatoes, whole almonds.

I usually eat right away after I stretch and do core work. I’m starving by then!

Hiking the AT and/or the PCT are on the top of my bucket list! I would never be able to do long segments since I have a family and a job. But as my kids get older and it’s easier to leave them for longer periods of time it becomes more of a possibility to do 3-5 day portions of it. Someday it will happen!

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