Monthly Archives: March 2015

  • Heading to Boston - Nathan Brown

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    The final of the three pre-Boston SKORA ambassador interviews after Jeremy and Tad, here's Nathan "Coach Beast" Brown!

    How and why did you start running? 

    My brothers signed up for a local city track meet, so I signed up too! The competition of foot races was unlike any other sport I had played up to that point or since! I love running but I feed off competition

    You’re running the 2015 Boston Marathon. This is quite the feat and requires qualification. What would you say are your top 3 pieces of advice for someone looking to qualify for the Boston Marathon?

    Hire a coach. It was key for me. I reached out to someone who had coached me previously and that really took my running to another level. Focus on recovery. You cannot get to the Boston Marathon without getting to your qualifying race healthy. Have fun with the process! Try your best not to make it a do or die situation.

    What are your favorite types of workouts? 

    Speed work!! Anything that allows me to push the pace but especially track work! I am still a miler at heart!!

    What is your proudest athletic moment, thus far?

    I think it has to be breaking 5 in the mile at 32 years old!! The mile is still my favorite distance to race and this was a big one!!

    Before every race, Nathan reads the bible then listens to gangster rap.

    Any pre-race rituals you like to go through? 

    I read the same 10 verses from my Bible on race morning. They all focus on being humble, being prepared, and being mindful. After I am done with that I listen to 90s gangster rap. It really gets me pumped up. I think it is a lingering tradition from my football days. Right before the gun goes off I say a prayer of gratitude then I am off!!

    How do you feel running influencing your non-running life?

    The most notable difference is the way I eat. I have always been a beer, burgers, and wings guy but now I am constantly looking for ways to fuel my body better! Still enjoy a beer on occasion!

    Which SKORA model is your favorite?

    The PHASE is easily the greatest running shoe I have ever worn! I love it!!! I will wear it for as long as they make it!

    Please include any links to your website or blog

    beastmoderunning.com

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  • Heading to Boston: Tad Kardis

    Continuing with the Boston Marathon bound ambassador interviews, Tad is up next!

    Tell the readers a bit about yourself. How and why did you start running?

    I didn’t start really running until about age 39. Years ago, I thought of myself as a soccer player, and running was just a necessary evil to get in shape to play soccer. I ran in my 20s and 30s to stay in shape, sort of. Approaching 40, I resolved to get rid of 40 pounds that had mysteriously accumulated on my torso, so I started running again. A friend asked me to join him in a race – a 4 mile fun run and my first competitive event since high school. I was hooked.

    You’re running the 2015 Boston Marathon. This is quite the feat and requires qualification. What would you say are your top 3 pieces of advice for someone looking to qualify for the Boston Marathon?

    1. Talk to others who have qualified. I’m not passing the buck on tips, I’m talking about extra motivation here. It’s such a special experience to run Boston that whenever someone asks me about it I can hardly stop talking. Here’s what someone told me before my first Boston: “It’s the closest thing you’ll ever feel to being a professional athlete.”

    2. Set realistic goals. Use pace predictors to see where you stand based on how you’ve done at shorter distances. Work with a coach or plug those numbers into a training schedule. Realize that not all BQs will get you to the starting line at Hopkinton. Don’t set your goal at BQ-0:01. If you’re not hitting your target pace during a 16 or 18 week training schedule, you’re probably not going to hit it on race day. The first time I tried to BQ I was a total novice. I was in a marathon training schedule, but I was about halfway through before I said, “hey, maybe I should try to BQ!” I missed it by about 3 minutes, which wouldn’t have been a disappointment if I had been realistic about it!

    3. Run with a pace group. More importantly, run with the right pace group! See #2. If you’re trained to a 3:15 pace, you’re probably not going to be able to keep up with a 3:05 pace group. That said, running with the right pace group for you can be an immense help. Instead of stressing out by looking at your GPS watch every 30 seconds, you can relax and just get into the flow. That said, if your pace group is too crowded or chatty, ditch ‘em!

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    What are your favorite types of workouts?

    Anything with hills, aka speedwork in disguise. I’m an above-average uphill runner – or maybe I just want to convince myself it’s a strength! For double the fun, try tossing in some bursts of speed uphill.

    Progression runs. Being an older masters runner, it takes me a couple of miles to really get warmed up. I love gradually ratcheting up the speed. When everything is clicking, it feels like I’m flying.

    What is your proudest athletic moment, thus far?

    A 3:09 at the Chicago Marathon last fall. A sub 3:10 had been my goal in 9 previous marathons. I finally got it with my first negative split. I was physically and mentally prepared for the race. If you don’t feel like you’re about to barf, you’re not trying hard enough. That’s probably a bit extreme, but I try to find that uncomfortable zone where I’m balanced between too much and too little effort.

    Any pre-race rituals you like to go through?

    Now I’m just babbling. I use the Western Australian carb loading method, so the 24 hours prior are a little weird. I ate 3 bags of candy corn before Chicago. Seriously. Also, no fiber! Because, well, you know. I top off in the morning with some more simple carbs, and usually some eggs.

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    How do you feel running influencing your non-running life?

    I can’t imagine what balancing personal and professional life would be like without running. Running gives me strength, stamina, and sanity.

    Which SKORA model is your favorite?

    The FIT. It’s my Goldilocks shoe. Just right. There’s enough cushioning that it holds up as a trainer, and it’s light enough that I prefer to race in it too. I’ve run marathons in (the dearly departed) BASE and PHASE, but all four last year were in FIT, including my PR at Chicago. I’m also really excited about the new TEMPO. I’ve done several long runs in it this year, and I’m still trying to decide whether to run this year’s Boston in TEMPO or FIT. Wait, was I supposed to say which one was my favorite?

    Check out Tad's website here.

    And Jeremy's pre-Boston interview!

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    Subscribe to our newsletter & be entered into our monthly free shoe drawing!

    Subscribe to our newsletter & be entered into our monthly free shoe drawing!

  • Heading to Boston: Jeremy Sanders

    Meet Jeremy Sanders, SKORA ambassador running the Boston Marathon this year!

    Tell the readers a bit about yourself. 

    I am a 38 year old Graphic Designer living is Stephens City, Virginia with my wife and 2 boys. It wasn't until I was 35 years old that I realized I was a runner; and a pretty good one. It has been a wild ride ever since.

    How and why did you start running? 

    I started running because I needed a distraction; a hobby. I was facing a lot of stress with owning a business, working a full-time job at the same time, trying to manage family time. My decision-making skills at the time were questionable at best. I was drinking almost every day. I weighed over 210 pounds. I was still struggling with depression following losing our first son, Lucas, at birth in 2004. I was not happy.

    I remember feeling out of shape when I participated in a relay race with my son, Connor, who was 4 at the time. The tipping point was seeing a photo of myself doing that race. I didn't want to be that sad, fat guy. So I set a goal to get in shape. It all started with a 4.2 mile run on July 10, 2011. The rest is history.

    Jeremy Sanders' Road to Boston

    You’re running the 2015 Boston Marathon. This is quite the feat and requires qualification. What would you say are your top 3 pieces of advice for someone looking to qualify for the Boston Marathon?

    1. Prepare. Find a plan online that fits your lifestyle and schedule. If you can afford it, hire a running coach. I failed to qualify my first two tries. With a coach in my corner, I qualified with over 5 minutes to spare on my third marathon.

    2. Take time to rest. If you don't allow your body to recover after strenuous workouts, you stand a chance of injuring yourself. Losing training time to injury can derail any hopes to qualify for Boston.

    3. Don't give up. Like I said, it took me 3 tries to qualify. Some runners try year after year. Make it your goal to qualify, work hard, and you will crush it.

    What are your favorite types of workouts?

    I like intervals and fartleks. The changes in tempo really push me and I think that these types of workouts are what make me a faster runner.

    What is your proudest athletic moment, thus far?

    Besides qualifying for Boston, the proudest moment was watching my son crush his 5K personal best time by almost 3 minutes (22:54) at the South Berkeley Christmas Parade 5k in 2014. He was on top of the world, as was I! He has now set his goals much higher and has full confidence he can reach them.

    Any pre-race rituals you like to go through? 

    I do a series of lunges to stretch out, then I try and get at least 2 miles of running in before a race. I throw in some strides of higher intensity to wake up my muscles. Once I get into the starting area, I just calm my nerves and chat with fellow runners, before I leave them in my dust (just kidding).

    How do you feel running influencing your non-running life? 

    I am a different person. I am in the best shape of my life. I am more appreciative of my friends and family.  I have the confidence to set goals, both personal and athletic, knowing I will crush them.

    I have been able to be more involved in my sons' activities by coaching every sport. I hope that my own accomplishments show my sons that they can do anything they set their minds to. I also donate one dollar for every single mile I run to The Lucas Fund, a charity we set up in memory of our son. This money goes to help babies and their families at the University of Virginia Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. 

    Running has brought clarity and direction to my life.

    Which SKORA model is your favorite? 

    My favorite racing shoe for all distances is the Phase. I have won a couple 5K's, a 10K and qualified for Boston in the SKORA Phase.

    Please include any links to your website or blog:

    http://www.runningdad.com

    https://www.facebook.com/Runningdadcom

    http://www.forlucas.com

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