Tag Archive | "ultrarunner"

NFE 2012

Run It Fast – Club Member Profile – Todd Shadburn #35

Todd Shadburn #35

This week’s RIF Club profile is Todd Shadburn #35! Todd just became a newly minted ultrarunner! He completed the North Face Endurance Challenge 50K on Saturday, September 15, 2012 in Madison, WI. Welcome to the ultra club Todd!

Let’s see what else Todd has been up to:


Name: Todd Shadburn
RIF #: 35
Facebook: Todd Shadburn


Years Running: 6
Favorite Race Distance: All of them!! 🙂 But if I have to pick: the marathon!!
Favorite PR: 3:56 at the Mississippi Blues Marathon 2012, Jackson MS  – 1st time I broke the four hour mark in a marathon, music was great also!!!
Favorite Race: Memphis St. Jude Marathon – Love running for St. Jude Kids. It was my first marathon and I have run four times as a St. Jude Hero 🙂
Favorite Bling: Ha- I like them all!  I hang them all up in my office, this is as close as I can get to being an artist! 🙂 
Next Race: In the morning, North Face Endurance 50K, Madison WI my first Ultra and Indianapolis Marathon in October.
What Makes You FEEL Fast?: Easy question – Extra bold Starbucks coffee before a morning run and a rocking playlist on my I-Pod: Tom Petty & The Heart Breakers, U2, Foo Fighters, 3Doors Down, Black Keys and Red Hot Chili Peppers are some of my favorites 🙂 

Why do you race? About seven years ago, on a business trip to Indianapolis, I developed a blood clot in my left leg.  I got it checked out in the emergency room and thankful it is was not too serious.  After I recovered I took up running and living a more healthy life style.  I wanted to set a good example for my two boys of how to take care of yourself and have balance in your life. 
Who inspires your running and why?  My two boys Jake and Zach!!  Dean Karnazes, Ultra Marathon Man – First running book I ever read 50/50, which motivated me to run.  I got to meet Dean in Nashville this year in Nashville at the Country Music Marathon, great guy and incredible athlete.  Dean gave me some advice “Never Stop Running”!  Joshua Holmes, met him several years ago before the club at a couple of races (maybe the Tupelo Marathon), always friendly and encouraging!!  Joshua is very inspirational but I have often wondered if he is really a cyborg or a machine the way he knocks out the miles!!  Haha   

Todd and Dean Karnazes

 Todd and Joshua RIF #1

If you could go for a run with any famous person (living or dead), who would it be and why?  Maybe Dean!  90% of the races I run in, I don’t know anyone, so I really enjoy running with our RIF Club, Carmel IN running club and people from work – Anthony Ohrey (RIF), David Beach and Robert Eaton.  Really famous enough people for me.  

Anthony RIF #27, Todd, and David.

What running moment are you most proud of?  Ha – My most proud running moment has nothing to do with a PR or what place I got during a race.  It was my son’s Jake’s first big 5k race, the Gibson Guitar 5k charity race in Memphis down Beale Street.  At the beginning of the race, he asked me if he could run it alone.  I struggled with it but I agreed!!  When the race started, he shot out like a bullet and it nearly killed me trying to keep him in sight.  About mile 2 he was exhausted and I passed him, encouraging along the way but I ran on up shortly ahead to give him his freedom.  As the finished line approached, Jake yelled, “hey dad wait up and let’s cross the finish line together”. ”.  As the finish line came in sight, Jake bolted for the finish line to beat me across!!  We both ran with everything we had while the crowd cheered and a photographer took the photo below.  My favorite photo of the two of us and my one and only FB profile picture!!  Just can’t change it!! 🙂


I think a lot of us started out running for health reasons – to manage weight, blood pressure, pain or chronic illness, or because of a scare like Todd had. Luckily, some of us come to love running for itself…just like Todd has. His enthusiasm for our sport is infectious. 🙂 He also has great taste in running music, friends, and inspirations! And what a great photo of him and his son at the 5K. THAT is how you Run It Fast!

Thanks for taking the time to let us get to know you, Todd. Good luck at the Indianapolis Marathon and Run It Fast!

If you’d like to join Run It Fast – The Club or would like more information about it, please click this link:

Run It Fast – The Club (JOIN TODAY)

[All photos submitted by Todd Shadburn]

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Run It Fast Club Member Profile – Emily Conley #24


Emily Conley #24

This week’s RIF Club Member Profile is Emily Conley #24. Emily is just coming off a HUGE accomplishment – she just ran Western States 100 (her Race Report) and finished in 28:45! She is an amazing runner!

But that’s not what impressed me most about Emily. I met her at the Jackson Jackass 50K in February. It was raining when we met in the parking lot but she was all smiles. During the race, she passed me (like I was standing still) and asked me how I was doing. I told her I was having some stomach issues. She actually stopped and waited for me to catch up to her to remind me that she’d brought peanut butter & jelly sandwiches for all of us and that real food might help. Is that not cool, or what? It’s one of the things I love about the running community…their willingness to help out a new runner or someone having trouble. Emily is a great example of that. Oh, and by the way, Emily was the overall women’s winner at the Jackson Jackass 50K!

So let’s meet Emily:

Name: Emily Conley
RIF #: 24
Twitter: @trailjunke
Facebook: emily hendrix conley


Years running: 4
Favorite race distance: anything from 50k-100mile
Favorite race: Sylamore 50k
Favorite bling: belt buckle from Western States 100
Next race: possibly Arkansas Traveller 100
What makes you FEEL fast?: running in the dark


Which of your running routes makes you the happiest and why?  I love to run the trails at Herb Parsons lake in Memphis.  Its a beautiful place to run.  One of my favorite memories there is running the trails right after a snow.  Almost every time I run there I think of that day and it makes me smile.

Have you ever worn a costume during a race? What was it and for what race? If not, would you? no costumes.  ever.

What is the thing you splurge on after a race?  more running gear

Why do you race?  I love the people, the comraderie, seeing new places, and the feeling I get when I run well or even just finish a race that was really difficult.

Big races or small races? And why? I have a deep appreciation for small, grass-roots trail races….the kind where you stand behind a line and someone yells GO!  My least favorite races I’ve ever done are the Chicago Marathon and the Vegas Marathon.  Maybe I’m just a trail lover at heart.

What is the one piece of running gear you can’t leave the house without? Lululemon speed shorts

What was your biggest “don’t” of a race? skittles.  I’d explain but it was gross at best.

What running moment are you most proud of? A little over four years ago I finished my first half marathon.  It was the gateway drug that led to Ultrarunning.  I’ll never forget finishing that race.  But I’m not sure it compares to crossing the finish line at the Western States 100.  That was just surreal.

If you can’t run, you’re __okay___.  There has to be balance between running and the rest of life.  Sometimes it’s perfectly okay to sleep late and snuggle with the kids on Saturday morning.


As you can tell from her pictures, Emily is obviously have a great time while she’s running. Her reasons for running and racing make running a joy but she keeps it in perspective. Racing and running are not the be-all and the end-all of our world and we have to remember to keep some balance in our lives. They sure do make it sweeter though, don’t they?

Thanks for sharing Emily! We are so proud of you and know you will continue to Run It Fast!

If you’d like to join Run It Fast – The Club or would like more information about it, please click this link:

Run It Fast – The Club (JOIN TODAY)

[All photos submitted by Emily Conley and Naresh Kumar]

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I Must Be Doing It Wrong

On Saturday, during the Nanny Goat 12/24/100 Ultra Race, I saw some tempers flare and heard others had tantrums/meltdowns. I had not seen that before in a trail race/ultra before and it surprised me. I thought it was just me who had little meltdowns during races. Luckily, no one was there to see the one I had on Saturday. While I was on the course, I tried to be positive/laugh so only Twitter bore the brunt of it. Which was, thankfully, only one tweet.

I think that when you enter the world of ultras and you see all these amazing people doing them and read about all their great adventures that you have this idealized vision of what an ultrarunner is. I know I do. To me an ultrarunner is someone with their sh!t together, who always smiles, never complains, figures out issues and deals with them, and just keeps running strong.

Yeah…that’s not me. So far, I’ve done 4 ultras and in every one of them, I felt:

  • Depressed – because I wasn’t as fast as I’d hoped.
  • Frustrated – because I couldn’t figure out stomach/feet/leg issues.
  • Whiny – because I wasn’t having a rainbows & unicorns race.
  • Sad – because I didn’t turn into the magical, glorified ultrarunner I thought I would be.
  • Angry – because I sometimes thought about quitting.
  • Fear – because I sometimes thought about quitting.
  • Doubt – that maybe, just maybe I didn’t have what it takes to run ultras.

So I must be doing it wrong. Right?

When my friends run ultras or I read race recaps of ultras, I’m always looking for some insight into what they were thinking when they were out there. Did they hit a low point? Did they have any doubts or fears? Am I the only one with thoughts like these?

And then when people congratulate me or tell me that they are proud of me for what I’ve accomplished, that little devil on my shoulder whispers in my ear “yeah, but they don’t know you were _____ (fill in the blank with any of the above).” That stupid little devil makes me feel guilty for accepting praise. I REALLY need to get rid of her or at least put a muzzle on her. Because you know what? I’ve been getting them done. Sure, it hasn’t always been pretty but I finished all 4 of them.

So I must be doing something right. Right?

I guess the whole point of my post is this…If you are thinking of going for an ultra (or your first marathon or half marathon or whatever new distance) but you’re not sure if you can do it…then go for it! Because if I can do it, you can do it.

Just know this…ultrarunners are NOT perfect. Take me for example. I am not a gifted runner. I’m not fast and I’m not agile on the trails. I am full of insecurities and doubts. I have low/ugly/would you like some cheese with that whine moments. I am not the poster child for an ultrarunner. Or even a runner really.

But…I am a runner and an ultrarunner. So, even if it isn’t all sunshine and roses, I keep going. That’s all you have to do. Keep going until you’re done. If you can do that, you ARE doing it right.

[photo submitted by me]

Posted in Running, Timed Races, Ultra MarathonComments (1)


What makes an Ultra runner different?

I love Ultra Running. Period. Ever since I ran my first Ultra, I got hooked to ultra distance running. We all get that crazy look from our family members, friends and colleagues.

My folks back home think that I have gone crazy….in a good way!

Would like to hear out from RIF members, What makes Ultra Runners different?

Posted in RunningComments (7)

Albinos Party

Ultrarunner Albino Jimenez Continues Across Spain

Spanish ultrarunner Albino Jimenez continues his run across Spain on el Camino de Santiago, the Trail of Saint James. His route started at his home in Burgos, Spain and goes west. He has some 329 miles total to run to reach Santiago de Compostela, the location of the tomb of Saint James, 54 more miles if he continues on to Fisterra, the actual end of land. His daily stages range from 30 to 40 miles, and it should take him around 10 days to complete the run.

As of this writing, he has completed three stages, distances of 44, 38 and 33 miles, and is currently spending the night at Leon. Heat seems to be the main challenge. He reports highs ranging in the upper eighties, 88 on the 3rd stage.

As his run unfolds, I’ll tweet his progress from my twitter account at @smithbend, and post his progress on my Facebook page. Albino is posting his progress on his Facebook page as well.

To read the full story click HERE

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