Chef Soraya Smith & CEO Duane Primozich on the Future of Backpacker’s Pantry & Making Adventure Food Sustainably (Ep.145)
Backpacker’s Pantry recently welcomed a new leader to take the company into its exciting next chapter. As CEO, Duane Primozich will prioritize Backpacker’s Pantry’s role as environmental stewards, a commitment to sustainability that goes above and beyond. We recently sat down with Duane and Backpacker’s Pantry owner and head chef, Soraya Smith, to hear all about where the company is headed; climate change’s adverse effects on the food industry; what Backpacker’s Pantry is doing to reverse them; and much more.
Canyon Woodward on “Rural Runners,” Life on the Campaign Trail, and the Value of Showing Up (Ep.143)
The key to both trail running and politics is mostly about just showing up, something Canyon Woodward knows well. As a seasoned political strategist, passionate climate activist, trail runner, and published author, he’s been asked to do that quite a bit. So, we sat down with Canyon to hear about how his new film, Rural Runners, captures what it takes to show up for yourself and your country, rain or shine; the importance of grassroots organizing; and a whole lot more.
Ted Hesser on “Chains of Habit” & Destigmatizing the Conversation Around Mental Health (Ep.142)
We spoke to adventure photographer and videographer, Ted Hesser, about his latest project, Chains of Habit, a short film focused on his lifelong battle with depression and the ways trail running has helped fend off its symptoms. We also talk about ways to destigmatize conversations around mental health; steps to take if you’re struggling; and much more.
David Kilgore talks Pro Trail Teams, On Running, & Leaning Into the Grind (Ep.141)
We sat down with David Kilgore, On Running’s Sports Innovation Manager, budding race director, and professional ultrarunner, to learn about how each of his different roles offer him a unique perspective on a trail running industry that continues to rapidly professionalize. Along the way, we also chat about On’s trail running team; athlete sponsorships; and much more.
Claire Bernard Miller, PT, on Building Strong Feet, Pelvic Floor Health, & Running Injury Free (Ep.140)
This time of year, many of us will feel the stress from all those hard summer miles take the form of unexpected aches and pains, which sometimes demand more involved treatment than just some extra time foam rolling. So, we sat down with Claire Bernard Miller, PT, to learn about how strong feet and a healthy pelvic floor can help prevent common running injuries.
Victor Diaz on Renegade Running, Representation, & Creating Space for New Communities (Ep.139)
Specialty-running stores often act as community hubs, places where runners of all skill levels can gather to learn, connect, and train. However, the demographics these small businesses cater to frequently fail people of color. So, we spoke to Victor Diaz, owner of Renegade Running, a run-specialty store rooted in Oakland, CA, to learn about how he’s creating a space that’s engaged with and reflective of the diverse culture it helps serve.
Davy Crockett on the History of 100-Milers, Ultrarunning in the 1800s, and the G.O.A.T. Debate (Ep.137)
On this week’s episode of Off The Couch, we trace the development of the 100-mile footrace in America with ultrarunning historian, Davy Crockett, before busting some myths about the Western States 100, debating the greatest ultrarunner of all time, and much more.
Rod Farvard on UTMB, “Hobby Jogging,” & Making the Transition from Triathlon to the Trails (Ep.136)
On this week’s episode of Off The Couch, we sat down with ultrarunner Rod Farvard a week removed from finishing 5th American at this year’s Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc to talk about his first time racing on an international stage; how he made the jump from triathlon to trail running; “hobby jogging”; and a whole lot more.
Todd Aydelotte on Running Through History, Edgar Allen Poe, & The Warriors UltraRun (Ep.135)
We sat down with ultrarunner and race director, Todd Aydelotte, to hear all about how he uses running to trace the lives of historical figures, like Edgar Allen Poe, Walt Whitman, and Teddy Roosevelt. Along the way, we also talk about the semi-legal 28-mile road race he created to reenact the 70’s cult film, “The Warriors”; running through New York City subways after dark; and a whole lot more.
Travis Soares on Setting the Sierra Peaks Section List FKT (Ep.134)
The Sierra Peaks Section List includes 247 of the most prominent peaks scattered throughout California’s Sierra Nevada Range. Reaching every summit is a lifetime’s work for most, and up until recently, no one had completed the list within a calendar year. But Travis Soares did — in a record 117 days — so we sat down with him to hear all about how things shook out on the roof of the Sierra.
Reviewer Reports: On Running vs. Skiing, Go-to Gear, & Ramen Bombs (Ep.133)
Matt Mitchell and Drew Kelly sat down to compare notes on how their summer mountain runnings seasons have played out, including the ways Drew sees his skiing translate to the trails, gear picks for all-day epics, the (in)famous “Ramen Bomb,” and more.
Alex Nichols on Coaching College Cross Country, Pikes Peak Streaking, & Beekeeping (Ep.132)
After being named the head coach of Colorado College’s cross country program last year, trail and ultrarunner, Alex Nichols, has made a habit of inviting some of his athletes out to support his own racing endeavors, including his 8th-place finish at the Western States 100 back in June. So, we talked to Alex about the intersection between coaching full-time at his alma mater and running trails professionally, and a whole lot more.
Danielle Snyder on Rewarding Failure, Taper Tantrums, & Mental Health in Ultrarunning (Ep.131)
You’ve probably encountered the adage that running is 90 percent mental, yet despite this feeling (and how true it may be), most runners dedicate the majority of their training to making sure they’re physically fit. But the brain fatigues too, so we talked with running coach and licensed clinical social worker, Danielle Snyder, about the importance of mindset training and the connection between mental well-being and physical performance.
Tailwind Nutrition Co-founder Jeff Vierling on Gut Bombs, Kitchen Chemistry, & Creating His Own Endurance Fuel (Ep.130)
Tailwind Nutrion’s products are some of the most popular fueling options for trail runners and mountain bikers alike, so we had their Co-founder, Jeff Vierling, on the show to hear all about how losing his breakfast after a mountain bike race inspired him to design his own endurance drink mix.
Leah Yingling on Her Western States 100, Pacing Perfection, & the Golden Hour (Ep.129)
After finishing 6th at this year’s Western States 100, Salomon Athlete (and sometimes co-host) Leah Yingling returns to the show to give us a play-by-play of how her day panned out.
Paddy O’Leary on Racing Horses, Fell Running, Lacrosse, & Community Building (Ep.128)
Paddy O’Leary’s path from the farm he grew up on in Wexford, Ireland to becoming an elite runner for The North Face is by no means a linear one. So we sat down with Paddy to talk about how he ended up racing on the trails (with and without a horse); growing the sport of lacrosse in Ireland; community building; fell running; and a whole lot more.
TrainingPeaks Co-founder Dirk Friel on Coaching, Artificial Intelligence, & the Future of Endurance Training (Ep.127)
Endurance training has come a long way from handwritten logs and fax machines, and we owe a lot of that progress to web-based platforms like TrainingPeaks. Founded in the late 90s by endurance coaches Dirk Friel and his father, Joe Friel, TrainingPeaks has helped modernize the ways athletes can track, analyze, and plan their training. So, we sat down with Dirk to hear more about how better data leads to better performance; artificial intelligence; and a whole lot more.
Naked Sports Innovations Co-founder Lindsay Dakota on “Simplexity” & Their New Laceless Trail Racing Shoe (Ep.126)
Naked Sports Innovations’ line of products has evolved a lot from the popular Running Band that started it all, and this month they announced plans for their first (laceless!) trail running shoe, the Naked T/r. So we sat down with Naked’s President and Co-founder, Lindsay Dakota, to break down their debut model and to talk about how the notion of “simplexity” drives their design process
Roxanne Vogel on Lightning Ascents, Flavor Science, and GU Energy Labs (Ep.125)
Ultramarathons are sometimes called eating competitions with a bit of running thrown in, and with so many different nutrition products and approaches at our disposal these days, it can be hard to know how to fuel properly. So, we talked to GU Energy Labs’ Nutrition and Performance Research Manager, Roxanne Vogel, about the ins & outs of eating on the run; how GU’s line of products fit into that equation; and much more.
David Laney on Ice Baths, Adventuring in the North Cascades, & Craft Footwear (Ep.124)
David Laney was already running 5 to 6 days a week by the time he turned 10, and has run professionally since bursting onto the trail scene in the early 2010s. He recently left his longtime sponsor and joined a relatively new player to the trail space in Craft Sportswear, and soon after doubled down with a full-time marketing job with them as well. So we talked to David about how it came about, what to expect from Craft Footwear, and much more — including, his signature ice bath routine, adventuring in the North Cascades, and running 100 miles for charity.
Zegama is Zegama, Tom Cruise, & 200-Mile Races (Ep.123)
On this “Running Through the News” edition of Off The Couch, Salomon athlete Leah Yingling stops by to catch us up on current events in the running world, including a debate around Tom Cruise’s running form; what mountain runner Joe Gray is doing to make trails a more equitable space for people of color; Kilian Jornet’s new shoe brand, NNormal; course records at the Zegama-Aizkorri Marathon; and much more.
Dr. Hal Rosenberg on Desert Magic, Standing Desks, & Running Healthy (Ep.122)
Over half of all runners will deal with an injury each year, but run enough miles and you’ll know that number is a lot closer to 100%. The irony is most running injuries are easily preventable, so as folks ramp up their summer training, we had Dr. Hal Rosenberg on Off The Couch to talk us through some simple tips for staying healthy out on the trails (and off the couch).
Robbie Balenger on Testing Limits, Exploring Recovery Techniques, & Outrunning a Tesla (Ep. 121)
After discovering running in his 30’s, ultra-endurance athlete Robbie Balenger became obsessed with the power of human endurance and quickly found that he needed challenges far exceeding standard ultramarathons to test his limits. So, he started creating his own. Since then, Robbie has run across America, completed the “Colorado Crush,” and recently outran a Tesla. We had him on to unpack all of these efforts before asking him about the mental side of endurance, recovery techniques, his next challenge, and much more.
Elan Lieber on the Miwok 100k, Coffee, and Running Fearlessly (Ep.120)
Elan Lieber called his recent performance at the 2022 Miwok 100K, “the run of his life,” but not for reasons you might expect. Shortly before his 2nd place finish, Elan said goodbye to his grandfather for the final time. So we talked to Elan about the role running plays in overcoming loss, how to learn to let go of fear, and much more.
Brian Metzler on a Writer’s Life & the Art of Running Free (Ep.119)
Brian Metzler has been writing about running, in one form or another, for the better part of the last 25 years. His latest book, Trail Running Illustrated: The Art of Running Free (which he co-authored with Doug Mayer) is a genre-bending book with an interesting backstory, so we talked to Brian about how it all came together; his writing (and running) career; and much more.
Corrine Malcolm on Suffering, the Tahoe Rim Trail, and Her Return to Racing (Ep.118)
If you’ve followed coverage of ultrarunning at all over the last few years, Corrine Malcolm is a name you’ve probably heard a lot. But between her many roles as a member of the media, it could be easy to overlook her as an elite runner in her own right. So we talk to Corrine about how she went from an olympic-level biathlete to running professionally for adidas Terrex; setting the supported FKT on the Tahoe Rim Trail; her return to racing; and much more.
Pablo Vigil on the Early Days of Mountain Running & Lessons from 50 Years of Racing (Ep.117)
Pablo Vigil has been called the greatest mountain runner in the world. In the 1980s he was nearly unbeatable, winning the famous Sierre-Zinal four consecutive times. We talk to Pablo about the early days of mountain running; what has changed since then; why he thinks simplicity is still the key to training (and life); and much more.
Stacked Fields, Golden Tickets, & Thoughts From the Lead Pack (Ep.116)
In this ‘Race Edition’ of Running Through the News, Salomon athlete, Leah Yingling (who’s already been on major podiums twice this year), joins us to discuss race results from the past few weeks and to preview the stacked fields at Madeira Island Ultra Trail and Canyons 100k.
Devon Yanko on the Umstead 100; Techno Music; & Doing What Excites You (Ep.115)
We caught up with Devon after her overall win and course record run at the Umstead 100, the first race of her “DY DIY Slam” project to run 5 100-mile races within the span of just a few months. We discuss that plus the performance-enhancing effects of techno music; the history of the Grand Slam of Ultrarunning; what led Devon to invent her own “DY DIY Slam”; and much more.
Broken Arrow Skyrace, Prize Purses, & the Current Race Landscape (Ep.114)
We talk to Brendan Madigan, race director of the Broken Arrow Skyrace, about the current state of races; prize purses; the economics of putting on a race; and why Brendan sees independent races as such a critical part of the race landscape.