The Pain Cave

By Jason Friedman

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Description

The Pain Cave is a free-flowing conversation with a wide variety of guests from the worlds of running and exercise science.  We talk about physiology, sports science, politics, music, beer, and occasionally running.

Episode Date
Episode 106 - Western States Recap with Phil Vondra
01:05:04

The Legend returns to the Pain Cave to recap Western States with “Heat Training,” breaking down the juiciest storylines and biggest takeaways from this past weekend in Auburn. Then, we review our men’s and women’s picks and see who was the best prognosticator this year. Finally, we get Phil’s report from his PR at Manitou’s Revenge and touch on the rest of the results from a busy week in the trail and ultrarunning world.

Links
Western States preview pod (with picks) featuring Cat Bradley

Beer for this episode: West Kill Kaaterskill IPA, Athletic Brewing Upside Dawn (use promo code JASONF20 for 20% off your first order)

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 29, 2022
Episode 105 - Twenty Questions with Brittany Peterson
00:30:48

One more episode to drop into the pre-Western States hype maelstrom: we sit down with former podium finisher Brittany Peterson, one of the world’s best trail runners and one the pre-race favorites this weekend at the Big Dance, for our world-famous 20 Questions.

Links:
Brittany’s website
Brittany on IG and Strava

“Beer” for this episode: Synergy Raw Kombucha Unity

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 22, 2022
Episode 104 - Western States Preview with Cat Bradley and Phil Vondra
01:21:02

It’s that time of year again: Western States! The world’s best are gathering in Olympic Valley for the biggest race on the domestic ultrarunning calendar, and we’re breaking down our top picks for the Big Dance with former WS100 champ Cat Bradley and her broken hand. We recorded this last week before all the happenings at Broken Arrow this weekend (though I will say we did a pretty good job of calling out some of the best performers to watch) before diving deep into our top 5 men’s and top 10 women’s picks. Then, Phil and I do a super-quick roundup of some recent Euro and Beastcoast trail news.

Beer for this episode: Athletic Brewing Free Wave and Upside Dawn (use promo code JASONF20 for 20% off your first order), Better Booch Kombucha

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 20, 2022
Episode 103 - This Month (?) in Ultrarunning with Phil Vondra
00:51:35

OK, so it’s been a teeny bit longer than a month….what can I say, it’s hard to pin the Legend down these days! And then when you do, his audio quality is shit….but I digress. We let way too much time pass between episodes, so this is less of a “deep dive” and more of a quick recap of a ridiculous amount of ultra results from around the globe, including the last of the Golden Ticket races for the year, new 100K and 100 mile world records, national championships, Madiera, Miwok, Gorge Waterfalls, and much more!

Beer for this episode: Athletic Brewing Rice Helles

Links
Phil talks on the Inside the Line podcast about his Catskills Winter FKT
Print coverage of his adventure
King vs. Hedges at Breakneck

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

May 13, 2022
Episode 102 - Twenty Questions with David Roche
00:50:12

Whoa, it’s been awhile! Life gets in the way of podcasting sometimes. So psyched to be back with Phil in the Cave for an awesome conversation with our coach, SWAP cofounder, podcaster, author, and world-class trail runner David Roche. In his second appearance on the show, we talk with David about goal setting and the mental approach to racing, before we hit the classic 20 questions topics: you know, Vonnegut, streaking, Michelle Obama, the usual.

Links:
Team SWAP
The SWAP Adventure Podcast
Our first interview with David
…and his wife Megan’s 20 questions episode
Buy The Happy Runner
David’s Instagram

Beers for this episode: Athletic Brewing Run Wild, Captain Lawrence Orbital Tilt, Hoplark Calm One Hoptea

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Mar 09, 2022
Episode 101 - Twenty Questions with Dani Moreno
00:32:44

West Coast trail goddess Dani Moreno gives us the lowdown on her breakthrough 2021 season before answering twenty stupid questions about cheese, ABBA, Tim Allen, and much more.

Links:
Dani’s website

Beers for this episode: Ober Creek Sundial, Ommegang Neon Rainbows, Kyla Ginger Tangerine Kombucha

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jan 03, 2022
Episode 100 - Ultrarunner of the Year with Jason Mintz
01:39:53

Wow! One hundred episodes! I couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate the centennial than with one of my perennial favorite episodes, debating the mens’ and womens’ Ultrarunners of the Year. I was once again thrilled to be included on the voting panel for this award. And as usual, I brought in some outside help to set me straight on my voting before the ballot needed to be submitted this week. (I’ve basically stopped blogging, so you won’t see all the changes I wound up making to what we discussed; the main one being my including Marisa Lizak in the top 5 for the women after I called Paul to help me better contextualize her Sparthalon performance.) Phil and I were once again joined by the great Jason Mintz, reprising his role from his initial appearance in 2018, as we talk about the top 10 men and women for the year, the top five performances, and I finally let loose on Camille.

Beer for this episode: Alchemist Heady Topper, Definitive Float

Links
Laura Kline on the 2017 ballot
Jason Mintz on the 2018 ballot
Rich Heffron on the 2019 ballot for the women and men
My final ballot in 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Dec 23, 2021
Episode 99 - Live WS100/HR100 Lottery Pod-tacular (Part 2)
01:22:00

TOO. MUCH. WHISKEY.

Links:
Previous episodes we referred to on this show:
Jason Green
Tom Kaplan
Joe Uhan
Maggie Guterl
AJW

Beers for this episode: Industrial Arts Tools of the Trade, Sloop Juice Bomb, Yard Owl Rye Saison, High West Double Rye Whiskey

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Dec 10, 2021
Episode 98 - Live WS100/HR100 Lottery Pod-tacular with Laura Kline and Jason Mintz (Part 1)
00:58:07

Phil and I sit down with repeat guests and GFOPs Laura Kline and Jason Mintz to drink our sorrows away as we livecast the lotteries for the Western States 100 and Hardrock 100. Spoiler alert: Phil and I don’t get in. But a bunch of people who we know did, so that was kind of fun. This one goes off the rails as I get progressively more intoxicated, so tune in for that. (Split into two parts due to what is really criminally ridiculous length.)

Links:
Previous episodes we referred to on this show:
Jason Green
Tom Kaplan
Joe Uhan
Maggie Guterl
AJW

Beers for this episode: Industrial Arts Tools of the Trade, Sloop Juice Bomb, Yard Owl Rye Saison, High West Double Rye Whiskey

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Dec 10, 2021
Episode 97 - Twenty Questions with Jason Green
01:08:11

One of the most fun episodes we’ve ever done. Jason Green, the founder of the Yeti Trail Cult and the RD of the Yeti 100, sits down in the 20 Questions hot seat to discuss Appalachia, skateboarding, ghosts, and Tyler Perry. Also: FIREBALL!

Links:
Yeti Trail Cult

Beers for this episode: Industrial Arts Torque Wrench, Sloop Juice Bomb, Three Taverns Teardrinker

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Nov 29, 2021
Episode 96 - This Month in Ultrarunning with Phil Vondra
01:04:35

Fall is in the air…leaves are falling, pumpkin spice is showing up in beer for some reason, and we are back for another episode of TMIU. We start with the epic performances at Big’s Backyard Ultra, where the great Harvey Lewis crushed the world record for the format, and discuss whether experience is a benefit or a hindrance in this discipline. Then we tour the world to chat about Spartathlon, Run Rabbit Run, the Rut, TDG, and much more. Also: Taggart retires?

Beers for this episode: Alchemist Luscious, Rushing Duck Irrational Numbers

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

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Oct 22, 2021
Episode 95 - Twenty Questions with Matt Flaherty
00:51:20

It’s been a few years since Matt Flaherty was dominating the roads and trails at the 50 mile and 100K distances, but he came back in a big way this summer when he crashed the Anton vs. Ian show at Leadville with an out-of-nowhere second place finish in his 100-mile debut. In the lates installment of 20 Questions, Matt talks about his training, valuing process over results, tackling environmental issues locally, and much more.

Links:
This is the article Matt mentioned about the Old Ghost Ultra.
Some of Matt’s music on SoundCloud
Insta: @MattAFlaherty
Strava
Environmental Resilience Institute at Indiana University

Beers for this episode: Athletic Brewing Closer by the Mile, Run Wild, and Whirlpool Pale Ale

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Oct 06, 2021
Episode 94 - Twenty Questions with Cat Bradley
00:46:38

Did you forget about Cat Bradley? The former WS100 champ and podium finisher at Leadville may have been out of the spotlight during the pandemic, but she is on the brink of returning to the pinnacle of the sport in a big way. We talked to Cat about her recovery from the surgery that kept her from racing in 2020, her return to the trails this summer, her early-career struggles, the next Lord of the Rings, and more.

Links:
Cat’s website
Instagram
The newest addition to the Boundless Coaching family

Beers for this episode: Oskar Blues Mama’s Little Yella Pils, Reed’s Strongest Ginger Beer

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Sep 29, 2021
Episode 93 - Twenty Questions with Zack Beavin
00:42:10

It’s time you got to know Zack Beavin, an East Coast speedster who in the last couple of years has been shown to be a rising star in the ultrarunning world. An impressive 5:03 in his debut 50-miler at Tunnel Hill last year may have been overshadowed by another young phenom’s debut 100 mile performance, but his performance at this spring’s Strolling Jim—an amazing 3:50 for 40+ miles, breaking a 30-year-old CR held by Andy Jones (an Olympic marathoner and former national record-holder at distances from 50K to 100 miles)—stamped him as a force to be reckoned with among the wave of young ultra phenoms. We grabbed Zack for twenty questions about whiskey, bananas, Oreos, and many other things a growing body needs.

Links:
Beavin Endurance, Zack’s coaching service
Instagram
Twitter

Beers for this episode: Athletic Free Wave Hazy IPA, Oskar Blues Can-O-Bliss Hazy IPA

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Sep 10, 2021
Episode 92 - This Month in Ultrarunning Megapod (with Paul Kentor!)
01:29:22

What happens when you don’t do a recap pod for the two busiest months on the ultrarunning calendar? You need a MEGAPOD to catch up on everything you’ve missed. First, Paul Kentor (aka SteelTownRunner) drops by to bring his unparalleled fund of knowledge to bear on Sania Sorokin’s astounding 24-hour world record run. Then, it’s a blitzkreig of ultra and trail news and results, from Chamonix to Leadville to Silverton and everything in between.

Beers for this episode: Lawson’s Little Sip, Sloop Juice Bomb

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Sep 03, 2021
Episode 91 - Vol State Extravaganza with Bob Hearn and Beverley Anderson-Abbs
01:17:44

We’re heading back into the Tennessee heat for a recap of an epic year at the Last Annual Vol State 500K. We weren’t sure anything could top Francesca Muccini’s incredible CR performance from last year, until 2020 runner-up and former Pain Cave guest Bob Hearn came back to Tennessee and obliterated both the crewed and screwed course records while running without a crew. Bob agreed to a return visit to the Pain Cave where he was joined by women’s screwed champ (breaking her own CR in the process) Beverley Anderson-Abbs, as we discussed this year’s race, their approaches to walking, their lowest points, corn dogs, and, you know, searching for enlightenment.

Links:
Old episodes: 20Q with Bob, LAVS 2020 with Phil and Francesca
Bob’s blog
Bev’s recent appearance on the UR Pod

Beers for this episode: Other Half DDH Mosaic + Galaxy IPA, Mikkeller Subway Mosaic IPA, Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Aug 04, 2021
Episode 90 - WS100 Recap/TMIU with Phil Vondra
00:59:37

Summer is heating up (or as Phil would say, “hotting up”) and we’re here to cool you down with a fire hose blast of ultrarunning news, including recaps from Western States and Manitou’s Revenge. We tackle all the big storylines coming out of Auburn, including our biggest surprises, guttiest performances, and how we did with our pre-race picks. We also pour one out for the 24-hour world championships, mispronounce a bunch of French names, and engage in some quickly dated (and wrong) speculation about Taggert’s next race.

Beers for this episode: Other Half DDH Small Citra Everything, Zero Gravity Green State Lager

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jul 08, 2021
Episode 89 - Western States Preview with Phil Vondra
00:45:20

One last episode before the Big Dance in Auburn! No beer for this morning pod, but The Legend is back as always to discuss the fallout from record attempts at Six Days in the Dome, plus our thoughts on the folks to watch this weekend at Western States.

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 23, 2021
Episode 88 - Saving the Boundary Waters, Talking WS100, and Twenty Questions with Clare Gallagher and Kyle Pietari
01:12:15

Just over a week out from Western States, it was a real honor to have returning top-10 runners on both the mens’ and womens’ side in the Pain Cave to talk about the Big Dance. Clare Gallagher is the defending champion at the nation’s premier ultramarathon, and Kyle Pietari has four times placed in the top 10. The two Colorado residents joined us to talk about their recent trip to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness in northern Minnesota, where they helped to crew and pace Alex Falconer to complete the first ever crossing of the preserve on foot. We spoke about their efforts to protect this wilderness and to bring awareness to the negative environmental impacts of proposed mining operations in the area. Then, we talked about this year’s fantastic fields at Western States and how these two legends of the sport will approach the race. Finally it was Twenty Questions time, talking tapers, books, Instagram, and more.

Links:
Alex’s pre-run summary of the Boundary Waters Traverse project, and his recap of the run
FKT.com: The Boundary Waters Traverse
Save the Boundary Waters: urge your representative to support the bill to protect the Boundary Waters
Also here; from this site specifically about the run

Beers for this episode: Athletic Brewing Free Wave, Pawley’s Island Big Sandy Beaches

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 18, 2021
Episode 87 - Twenty Questions with Max King
00:54:49

The pride of the Cornell Big Red machine and perhaps the most versatile runner on the MUT scene in the past 15 years, Max King is one of my running heroes and now one of my all-time favorite guests. Know how many people have won both the World Mountain Running Championship and the World 100K Championship? One guy. That’s the list. But he’s also qualified for the Olympic Trials five times by my count (twice in the steeple, three times in the marathon) and has represented the US at the World XC Championships four times. We caught up with Max after he just got back from the Salomon young athlete training camp to talk about why it’s taken him so long to get back to the 100 mile distance, his goals for Western States, adventure racing, longevity, and of course, the Dining Hall Classic.

Links:
Famous enough to have a Wikipedia page!
Max’s trail running camps
World Athletics profile
Instagram
This older interview gives you a little beta on the DHC

Beers for this episode: Foreign Objects Mind Body Light Sound, Maine Beer Co. Lunch, Deschutes Teeny Hazy Ale

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 09, 2021
Episode 86 - UTMB Fallout, WS100 Preview, and Twenty Questions with Andy Jones-Wilkins
01:10:24

A true legend of the sport joined us in The Pain Cave this week. The great Andy Jones-Wilkins dropped by to offer his perspective on the state of the sport following the big announcement of the new partnership between UTMB and the Ironman Group. We also talked briefly about our excitement for the upcoming Western States 100 before we dove into 20 Questions to discuss skeleton, pierogis, and the best way to fertilize a tree.

Links:
Famous enough to have a Wikipedia page!
AJW’s Tap Room
Instagram
Coaching for CTS

Beers for this episode: Lawson’s Little Sip, Jackie O’s Who Cooks For You?, Sierra Nevada Hazy Little Thing

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 02, 2021
Episode 85 - Twenty Questions with Beth Pascall
00:46:57

For the first time ever on the pod, two Brits are on the mic as we welcome in the amazing Beth Pascall. A top 10 finisher at both Western States and UTMB, Beth has to be considered one of the favorites for the big dance next month following her dominant win at the Canyons 100K. We talk about her win at Canyons and being back on the WS course again, before diving into 20 Questions to learn about her background, lobsters, and what she has in common with the Stanford mascot.

Links:
Beth’s website
Beth runs for Salomon
Follow her on IG
We referenced her appearance on the Pyllars pod multiple times

Beers for this episode: Drowned Lands Soft Terra, Yard Owl Grisette

Intro music: “God Save the Queen” by Queen
Outro music: “God Save the Queen” by the Sex PIstols

May 21, 2021
Episode 84 - This Month in Ultrarunning with Phil Vondra
01:05:22

Racing is back! And so are we, IN PERSON to drink some beer and throw out some lukewarm takes about the latest happenings around the ultra world. We dive deep on the big announcement on UTMB and Ironman, dissect results from Canyons and Jackpot, and discuss 100-mile world records on both the track and the treadmill. Also, I insult 200-mile trail races.

Links
UTMB + IM

Beer for this episode: Westkill Brewing Creekside

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

May 11, 2021
Episode 83 - Twenty Questions with Hillary Allen
00:43:20

Another awesome guest joins the pod as we welcome in neuroscientist, Skyrunning champion, author, and North Face athlete Hillary Allen into the Pain Cave for the latest episode of Twenty Questions. We talk about Hillary’s new book, Out and Back, which chronicles her recovery from a near-fatal accident while racing in Tromso, Norway, before turning our attention to the usual 20Q fare: you know, unicorns, chafing, and things of that nature.

Links:
Hillary’s website
Hillary on IG
Buy the book!

Beers for this episode: Drowned Lands Deep Terra, Jackie O’s Mystic Mama

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Apr 19, 2021
Episode 82 - Emergency Des Linden Pod with Phil Vondra and Paul Kentor
00:31:01

It’s our second-ever EMERGENCY POD, and we finally wore down Paul Kentor (a.k.a SteelTownRunner) to come on the show and share his unparalleled fund of ultrarunning knowledge with us. We discuss Des’ amazing (if not unexpected) performance, the history of the road 50K as a competitive event (on the world scene not much), the historical context of this performance, and where we’d want to see Des go next.

Links
Among many other articles about this, here’s irunfar’s coverage of the WR
SteelTownRunner on Twitter and IG

Beer for this episode: Industrial Arts Wrench

Apr 16, 2021
Episode 81 - This Month in Ultrarunning with Phil Vondra
01:09:08

It’s been a LONG time since our last TMIU episode, so here goes! Phil is back in the Pain Cave to discuss all things ultrarunning, including his return to racing at GDR, results from the first two GT races of the year, the Barkley Marathons, and the Ohio Backyard ultra. (We touched on the Carbon X2 record attempt in February’s shoe draft episode, so decided to skip it here.) We also talk about the changes to the Western States lottery rules, Taggart vs. the haters, Koop vs. everybody, and much more.

Links
Koop’s IG post
WS lottery changes
Our interview with Joe Uhan about the WS lottery
Our interview with Taggart VanEtten

Beer for this episode: Lawson’s Sip of Sunshine, Pawley’s Island Brewing Co. Big Sandy Beaches

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Apr 12, 2021
Episode 80 - Twenty Questions with Cole Crosby
00:40:45

We’re back on the 20 Questions beat with #beastcoast stud and US National Snowshoe team member Cole Crosby. We talk to Cole about his recent run across the entire length of New Jersey, plus ducks, horses, motivation, pizza, and much more.

Links:
Cole’s business, Cresting the Summit
Cole on IG

Beers for this episode: Lawson’s Sip O’ Sunshine, Woodstock Brewing Mega Super Pixelated DIPA, Jackie O’s Mystic Mama, Ommegang Abbey Ale

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Mar 04, 2021
Episode 79 - The Shoe Draft with Bryon Powell and Ian Golden
01:26:14

We’ve drafted ultrarunning fantasy teams, we’ve drafted the elements of the perfect aid station, and now we’re drafting the perfect shoe closet. Bryon Powell of iRunFar and Ian Golden of the Trails Collective join Phil and I for a brief state-of-the-sport discussion before we select our favorite all-time shoes in each of eight different categories. Charge your flux capaciters and gas up your DeLoreans, we’re taking you back to 1993…and even a little farther.

Vote here for the winner of our inaugural shoe draft!

Beers for this episode: Equilibrium DHop 28, 4 Noses El Jefe Caliente, Alchemist Focal Banger

Links
iRunFar
The Trails Collective
Red Newt Racing

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Feb 16, 2021
Episode 78 - Twenty Questions with Kaytlyn Gerbin
00:31:48

The defending champ at Transgrancanaria and the newly minted holder of the Wonderland Trail FKT, Kaytlyn Gerbin faces her toughest test: the 20 Questions hot seat. We talk about her favorite races, snowboarding, watermelons, weird costumes, and much more.

Links:
Instagram: @kaytlyn_g
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kaytlyng/
Strava: https://www.strava.com/pros/kaytlyn_g
Twitter: https://twitter.com/kaytlyn_gerbin

Beer for this episode: Sixpoint Sweet Action

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Feb 02, 2021
Episode 77 - Getting to Know Taggart VanEtten
00:37:34

We start the new year off right with a visit to the Pain Cave from Taggart VanEtten. Who is that, you ask? He’s the triathlete-turned-marathoner who shocked the ultrarunning world with an outstanding 12:19 win at the Tunnel Hill 100 in his ultramarathon debut. Taggart tells us about how his tri background helps him as an ultrarunner, why he decided to run Tunnel Hill this year, his training and nutrition, and more.

Links
Follow Taggart on Instagram
Taggart’s blog

Desert Island Picks: How Bad Do You Want It by Matt Fitzgerald, Tickets to my Downfall by Machine Gun Kelly, Miller Lite

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jan 05, 2021
Episode 76 - Year in Review with Dylan Bowman
01:47:16

Time to bid goodbye to the possibly the strangest year in ultrarunning history. Phil and I do a quick recap of recent results before we welcome back the great Dylan Bowman to look back at the yar that was and to make our picks for Ultrarunner of the Year, Performance of the Year, FKT of the Year, and much more.

Links:
DBo’s website
DBo on the Pain Cave
DBo’s podcast, The Well (soon to be rebranded as Pyllars)

Beers for this episode: Other Half DDH Monteuka + Galaxy, Peak Organic Slim Hazy, Great Notion Cloud Forest, Zero Gravity Little Wolf, Jackie O’s Cool Beans

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Dec 29, 2020
Episode 75 - Twenty Questions with Patrick Reagan
00:42:57

The pride of the #Beastcoast, Patrick Reagan, joins us in the Pain Cave for another edition of 20 questions. We talk about his favorite race, why he like racing in hot weather, playing guitar, racing 100s, why watermelon is awesome, and much more.

Links:
Follow Patrick on Instagram
Patrick’s website
Interested in being coached by Patrick?

Beers for this episode: Jackie O’s Who Cooks For You, Peak Organic Slim Hazy

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Dec 22, 2020
Episode 74 - Twenty Questions with Sabrina Stanley
00:38:31

Phil gets to fanboy out as we welcome in defending Hardrock champ Sabrina Stanley to the Pain Cave to sit on the 20 Questions hot seat. We cover Sabrina’s exploits on Nolan’s 14 this summer, her favorite race and toughest race (hint: they’re the same race), which one of us won the Ultrarunning Fantasy Draft by selecting her (hint: it was me), and more.

Links:
Follow Sabrina on Instagram
The truth will out: the Women’s Ultrarunning Fantasy Draft

Beers for this episode: Equilibrium/Great Notion Juice = Juice, Foreign Objects Ritual Colors

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Dec 14, 2020
Episode 73 - South West Coast Path FKT with Kristian Morgan
00:31:13

British ultrarunner Kristian Morgan had to forego a second attempt on the Appalachian Trail this summer due to the travel restrictions in place because of the pandemic. Instead, he stuck close to home and took on the longest trail in the UK, the 630-mile South West Coast Path, taking aim at the four-year-old record set by the great Damian Hall. Kristian joined us for the third time in the Pain Cave to talk about his experiences on the trail, training during the pandemic, running with gratitude, and more.

Links
Kristian’s pre-AT interview and post-AT interview
Kristian’s website and podcast
South West Coast Path FKT

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Nov 20, 2020
Episode 72 - Confronting Failure with Zoë Rom
00:51:48

Trail running beast Zoë Rom is the Associate Editor of Trail Runner magazine and the host of the DNF Podcast—a show about “failure in life and running…about unfinished business, and the unglamorous work of picking yourself up, dusting yourself off, and moving on.” Zoë joins us to talk about failure vs. hardship, overcoming fear, practicing self-compassion, FKTs, sled dog racing, and more. Also, how to say “hedgehog” in Italian.

Links
Zoë’s website and coaching site
Social media: Strava, IG, Facebook, Twitter

Desert Island Picks: The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery, Songs by Adrianne Lenker, Nutella, Outer Range Brewing Co. Meadows IPA

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Nov 10, 2020
Episode 71 - Truckin' with Jake Jackson
00:48:23

In the past two years, SoCal native Jake Jackson has progressed from a solid competitor on the southwestern trail-running scene to a top-10 finish at the 24-hour World Championships. Jake joins us on the show to talk about his meteoric rise to becoming one of the top US runners ever at 24 hours, how he balances his training with full-time work and family obligations, why he started working with a coach, battling imposter syndrome, and more.

Links
Follow Jake on Instagram
Jake runs for rabbit, Spring Energy, XOSkin, Squirrel’s Nut Butter, and Prevail Botanicals

Desert Island Picks: Born to Run by Christopher McDougall, S&M by Metallica, Rancid by Rancid, Miguel’s Jr. burritos, Newcastle Brown Ale

Thanks to Himalaya Botanique for sponsoring this episode of the Pain Cave. Himalaya Botanique— the toothpaste that’s free from fluoride, SLS, and artificial colors and flavors, but bursting with foam and flavor! Enjoy 20% off your purchase of Himalaya toothpaste, using discount code PAINCAVE20 at Amazon. To learn more about Himalaya Botanique and Ayurvedic wellness visit Himalayausa.com

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Nov 03, 2020
Episode 70 - Rockin' Out with Tony Fletcher
01:01:39

Are you ready to rock? Author, music journalist ,and trail runner Tony Fletcher makes his face-melting debut in the Pain Cave. We talk about how he cut his teeth in the British punk scene of the late 1970s, becoming a de facto professional journalist at fourteen, the Who vs. the Stones, trail running in the Catskills, traveling around the world, Crystal Palace, and more.

Links
Tony’s website, where you can find info on his books and his blog
One Step Beyond, Tony’s excellent podcast
Instagram and Twitter

Desert Island Picks: A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson, Born to Run by Christopher McDougall, Tommy by The Who, Peanut Butter Clif Bars, Gipsy Hill Hepcat

Oct 19, 2020
Episode 69 - This Month in Ultrarunning with Phil Vondra
00:43:14

Nice! The Legend is back for a “This Pandemic in Ultrarunning” update, as we check in on some of the recent trail and ultra races starting to every so slowly come back on line. We cover results from the Bear 100, IMTUF, Yeti, and Stumpjump and discuss our own returns to racing at Cat’s Tail and 3 Days at the Fair. Plus, we discuss qualification for the Golden Trail finale, the starting field for Hardrock 2021, miniature goats, and more.

Beer for this episode: Treehouse Julius, Lagunitas DayTime IPA

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Oct 13, 2020
Episode 68 - Twenty Questions with Megan Roche
00:36:08

It’s a Some Work, All Play party in the Pain Cave this week as we welcome physician, epidemiologist, coach, author, and five time US trail running champ Megan Roche onto the 20 Questions hot seat. We talk about Megan’s favorite race, her dream running partner, the loss of the North Face 50, how to cook a scoby, and much more.

Links:
Some Work, All Play (Team SWAP)
The SWAP Adventure Podcast
Megan’s book, The Happy Runner (and our interview with co-author and husband David)

Beers for this episode: Athletic Brewing Oktoberfest, Alchemist Focal Banger, GT’s Trilogy Kombucha

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Oct 09, 2020
Episode 67 - Twenty Questions with Bob Hearn
00:41:15

Continuing with our 20 questions format, and fulfilling our goal of interviewing the entire podium from the Last Annual Vol State, we welcomed Bob Hearn into the Pain Cave and onto the 20Q hot seat. Since turning 50, Bob has become one of the best and most consistent 24-hour and multi-day runners in the US, holding national age-group records at 24 and 48 hours. We chat with Bob about his favorite races, his most embarrassing moment, training, diet, peaking, and more.

Links:
Bob’s blog

Beers for this episode: Treehouse Brewing Green IPA, Half Acre Navaja DIPA

Thanks to Himalaya Botanique for sponsoring this episode of the Pain Cave. Himalaya Botanique— the toothpaste that’s free from fluoride, SLS, and artificial colors and flavors, but bursting with foam and flavor! Enjoy 20% off your purchase of Himalaya toothpaste, using discount code PAINCAVE20 Amazon. To learn more about Himalaya Botanique and Ayurvedic wellness visit Himalayausa.com

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Sep 23, 2020
Episode 66 - Twenty Questions with Ellie Pell
00:32:02

This week we’re trying out a new format that we’ll be using from time to time: Twenty Questions, where we’ll attempt to find out everything you never wanted to know about your favorite ultrarunners, or get to know someone you may not know all that much about. For our inaugural attempt at this we welcome in Beastcoast marathon and ultra stud Ellie Pell. If you’re not familiar with Ellie, maybe you should be. Despite her youth she’s had a bevy of top-flight performances on both the road and trail, including a podium finish at JFK and a top-15 at the TNF championships, and she ran in the Olympic Marathon Trials in Atlanta in February. Find out how she approaches training, her go-to post-race meal, which Olympic sport she wishes she could compete in, and much more.

Links:
Instagram and Twitter
Ellie’s website and podcast (IG: @hamstringsandheartstrings)
The Trails Collective Interview Series (website) (YouTube) (podcast) (IG: @the_trails_collective)
Ellie on URP

Beers for this episode: Other Half Baby Diamonds, Zero Gravity Little Wolf

This episode sponsored by Let’sGetChecked. Use the promo code PAINCAVE30 for 30% off all services. Please support our great sponsors!

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Aug 31, 2020
Episode 65 - Domination at Vol State with Francesca Muccini
01:02:34

In what SteelTownRunner describes as one of the greatest multiday performances ever, full stop, Francesca Muccini just obliterated the women’s course record at the Vol State 500K, out-dueling pre-race favorite Bob Hearn in winning the race outright for the second time in the second-fastest performance ever at this insane event. Phil and I welcomed Francesca into the Pain Cave to learn about her background and get the story of her incredible run.

Links:
Professor Muccini
LAVS
Phil’s story from Vol State on our previous episode
Greg Armstrong’s recap of Francesca’s amazing run
Bob Hearn’s LAVS race report

Desert Island Picks: Zibaldone by Giacomo Leopardi, Direct Hits by the Killers, Heineken

Beers for this episode: Equilibrium Brewing Wavelength, Sixpoint Crisp

This episode sponsored by Let’sGetChecked. Use the promo code PAINCAVE30 for 30% off all services. Please support our great sponsors!

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "Tennessee Jed” by the Grateful Dead

Aug 03, 2020
Episode 64 - Return to Racing at Vol State with Phil Vondra
01:06:30

Maybe you don’t know why we call him the Legend. THIS IS WHY. Phil Vondra is back in the co-pilot’s chair for this episode, as we blow through a couple of notable FKTs and pay lip service to the gradual restarting of the 2020 race schedule. Then, we dive into the main event—a recap of Phil’s incredible, epic, dare I say LEGENDARY performance at this month’s Last Annual Vol State, an insane 500KM race across Tennessee. Phil gives us the scoop on racing in 100+ degree heat, sleeping on park benches, surviving on ice cream bars and something called Sun Drop, and much, much more.

Links:
LAVS
Apparently the hottest FKT route in the world right now

Desert Island Picks: Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien, The White Album by the Beatles, Other Half Citra Everything

Beers for this episode: Equilibrium Brewing Fractal Lab, Yard Owl Chouette D’Or

This episode sponsored by Let’sGetChecked. Use the promo code PAINCAVE30 for 30% off all services. Please support our great sponsors!

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jul 28, 2020
Episode 63 - Gender Equality and the Ultimate Aid Station Draft with Aliza Lapierre and Phil Vondra
00:49:22

As we discussed in our recent podcast with Yassine Diboun, the ultrarunning community is generally a very welcoming one—but one in which diversity still continues to lag. While the sport strives for inclusivity, only about a third of ultrarunners are female. We we very happy to be joined in the Pain Cave by elite ultrarunner Aliza Lapierre, who called in from the Northeast Kingdom to discuss the gender gap in ultraunning and steps that we can take to open the sport up to more female athletes. The, the legendary Phil Vondra jumped in with us for our most recent draft episode, as we take turns selecting the elements of a great aid station.

Links:
Aliza on Instagram
Trail Sisters

Desert Island Picks: Runner: A Short Story About a Long Run by Lizzy Hawker

Beers for this episode: Equilibrium /Trillium Brewing Climb the Ballmer Peak, Zero Gravity Little Wolf

This episode sponsored by Ladder Sport, thanks for their support

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 23, 2020
Episode 62 - Chasing FKTs with Ben Nephew
00:41:02

Without much happening on the racing front over the past several months, many athletes have been venturing in to the world of chasing “Fastest Known Times”—that is, identifying a route and trying to complete it faster than anyone ever has. Legendary trail runner Ben Nephew has been putting up FKTs all over the northeast for years, including classic New England routes like the Presidential Traverse and the Pemigewasset Loop. At the time of our recording a few weeks ago, Ben had more registered FKTs than anyone else (he has since been surpassed by Jason Hardrath). Ben joined the show to talk about the attraction of FKTs, some of his favorite routes, some he’d like to try, and what he thinks the future holds for the scene.

Links
FastestKnownTime.com
Ben’s routes

Desert Island Picks: Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers by Robert Sapolsky, The Unforgettable Fire by U2, Michael David Petite Petit

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 22, 2020
Episode 61 - #Eracism with Yassine Diboun
00:50:29

In the midst of the ongoing protests against police brutality and systemic inequality, the great Yassine Diboun stops into the Pain Cave to discuss his experience as a minority athlete in an overwhelmingly white majority sport. One of the most accomplished ultrarunners in the US, Yassine brings us his unique perspective on growing up as the target of racism, how that contributed to his struggles with addiction, barriers to minority participation in trail running, and what we can do to help build a more tolerant and equitable community.

Links
Yassine’s recent article in Trail Runner magazine
Wy’east Wolfpack and youth trail running camp
If you’d like to donate to help sponsor a scholarship for a camper, contact here

Desert Island Picks: The Big Book, Live From Mars by Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals, Brew Dr. Kombucha Circulatory Blend

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 12, 2020
Episode 60 - Sports in the Time of Coronavirus with Dr. Keith Strudler
01:25:56

The pandemic has altered our lives in myriad ways—as runners, as sports fans, and obviously just in our daily interactions. To sort this all out, I was very happy to be joined by my good friend and fellow Cornell XC/track alumnus, elite triathlete Dr. Keith Strudler, the director of the School of Communication and Media at Montclair State University. We discussed how COVID-19 will change sports media, the long-term impact on the collegiate sports landscape—particularly for XC and track programs, youth sports, virtual races, what he’s been missing most during the pandemic, and much more.

Links:
Keith at Montclair State
Keith’s hilarious new podcast, Sportish
The Voice of Sport on WAMC

Desert Island Picks: DQ Heath Bar Blizzard, Three Imaginary Boys by the Cure, March of the Penguins by Luc Jacquet, Zima

This episode sponsored by Ladder Sport, thanks for their support

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 08, 2020
Episode 59 - Radio and Running with Jimmy Buff
01:08:27

If you’re in the music business—or you’ve listened to the radio in the Hudson Valley or New York City in the past thirty years—you probably know the name Jimmy Buff. But you may not know that in addition to being a longtime DJ, producer, and program director, “Buff” is also an accomplished ultrarunner and triathlete. He and I sat down for a fascinating look back at his career in radio and sport. We talked about how he got his start at the legendary WNEW-FM in NYC, counter-programming Howard Stern, the importances and challenges of independent commercial and community radio, politics, the connection between addiction and endurance sports, and much more.

Links:
Radio Kingston

Desert Island Picks: A Soldier of the Great War by Mark Helprin; Blood on the Tracks by Bob Dylan

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

May 28, 2020
Episode 58 - TV, Music, and (Show)running with Andy Greenwald
00:47:06

Continuing our quarantine-friendly series of running guests who are famous for things other than running, I was ecstatic to welcome Andy Greenwald into the Pain Cave this week. Andy got his start as a music critic for Spin magazine in the late 1990s, then became both a respected TV critic and a writer on TV shows such as Legion and Cat’s Cradle in the 2010s. Now he has won acclaim as the creator and showrunner of Briarpatch, his ten-episode adaptation of a classic noir thriller. I was thrilled to have Andy on the show to talk about podcasting, interviewing, running a TV show, and his newfound love of running.

Links:
Briarpatch on USA
Andy and Chris’ podcast, The Watch
Andy’s books: Nothing Feels Good and Miss Misery

Desert Island Picks: Tusk by Fleetwood Mac; Chinaman’s Chance by Ross Thomas, Dance Dance Dance by Haruki Murakami, Bordersnakes by James Crumley; Herr’s Sour Cream and Onion potato chips; Trumer Pilsner

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

May 19, 2020
Episode 57 - Mens' Ultrarunning Fantasy Draft with Phil Vondra and Rich Heffron
00:54:02

Despite Phil’s abominable behavior during our womens’ draft (for which he was roundly criticized in the media and penalized by the voters), he was invited back, along with GFOP Rich Heffron, to select our mens’ ultrarunning fantasy teams. And this time, the Legend did not disappoint! Take a listen and let us know who had the best performance in this year’s fantasy draft.

Beers for this episode: Ithaca Every Day Haze and Flower Power; Equilibrium Wavelength, Energy Equals, and Super Fractal Julia Set

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

May 11, 2020
Episode 56 - The Best Running Books with Joe Puleo (Part II)
00:56:05

Quarantine content continues! Now that you’ve had enough time to plow through our favorite running movies, you should have plenty of time to tackle the reading list we’re about to assign you. I’m joined by my great friend, coach and author Joe Puleo, possibly the most well-read person I’ve ever met, to go through our favorite books about running. In Part II, we cover our favorite biographies, memoirs, science/training books, and running fiction.

Links
Part I - narrative non-fiction books
Joe’s first appearance on the show
Joe’s book, Running Anatomy (blurbed by yours truly!)
Hear Joe’s presentation at an upcoming virtual NSCA conference

May 08, 2020
Episode 55 - The Best Running Books with Joe Puleo (Part I)
00:54:13

Quarantine content continues! Now that you’ve had enough time to plow through our favorite running movies, you should have plenty of time to tackle the reading list we’re about to assign you. I’m joined by my great friend, coach and author Joe Puleo, possibly the most well-read person I’ve ever met, to go through our favorite books about running. In Part I, we tackle our favorite category: non-fiction running books.

Links
Joe’s first appearance on the show
Joe’s book, Running Anatomy (blurbed by yours truly!)

May 07, 2020
Episode 54 - Women's Ultrarunning Fantasy Draft with Phil Vondra and Laura Kline
00:49:12

The cure for your quarantine blues! No, races aren’t happening right now, but that’s not gonna stop us from bringing the concept of fantasy sports to the world of ultrarunning. I’m joined by the legendary Phil Vondra and the great Laura Kline to draft our women’s ultrarunning fantasy teams—one runner in each of twelve different events….and the hilarity (and the outrage) ensues. Take a listen and let us know who you think has the best team. The winner gets beer, so it’s important!

Beer for this episode: Equilibrium/Civil Society Sweep the Leg; Founders Rubaeus; Battery Steele Flume

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Apr 27, 2020
Episode 53 - Podcasting, Running, and NBA Crossovers with JE Skeets
00:58:17

There’s not a ton of news going on in sports these days, and the trail and ultrarunning world is no exception. And I don’t have the emotional bandwidth to turn this podcast into a stream of stories about how we’re all dealing with isolation. Instead, we’re going to try to branch out a little bit; one avenue I wanted to explore was interviewing some runners who are better known for things other than running. And I was absolutely ecstatic to kick off this series by snagging one of my favorite podcasters to come on the show and talk a little shop. JE Skeets is the co-host of No Dunks, a daily NBA podcast on The Athletic. This is the third iteration of the show that he and his friends Tas Melas, Jason Doyle, Trey Kerby, and Leigh Ellis, have had since the Podcasting Stone Age in 2005. Prior to this year, they produced a daily show on NBA TV called The Starters. I sat down with Skeets to talk about being one of the pioneers of podcasting, his background in high school hoops, his newfound love for running, which NBA players would make good marathoners, and more.

Links:
No Dunks podcast
Skeets on IG (and the pod)

Desert Island Picks: Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace, A-Sides Win by Sloan, Wrecking Bar Brewpub Beer Flavored Vienna Lager

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Apr 20, 2020
Episode 52 - Ten Best Running Movies with Phil Vondra
01:14:21

The Legend is back!! From a socially appropriate distance of course. As it’s been about six weeks since our last episode, we started with an abbreviated version of This Month in Ultrarunning, recapping results from the (hopefully temporary) end of the ultra season—including the Olympic Trials marathon, the Caumsett 50K, the Pioneer Spirit 50 mile, and Transgrancanaria—as well as recapping the Quarantine Virtual Backyard Ultra and some FKT news. Then it’s time for our top ten running movies of all time (40:30)!

Huge thanks to Podcorn for sponsoring this episode. Explore sponsorship opportunities and start monetizing your podcast by signing up here: https://podcorn.com/podcasters/

Beer for this episode: Equilibrium Fluctuation, Alchemist Focal Banger

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Apr 13, 2020
Episode 51 - This Month in Ultrarunning with Phil Vondra
01:10:35

The 2020 ultrarunning season is in full swing, and we’re back after a two-month hiatus to bring you all the news that’s fit to discuss, and also a bunch that probably isn’t. The Legend and I start off by discussing the surprising cancellation of the North Face Endurance Challenge series (4:00) and the Sage/Koop Twitter beef (16:00) before our whirlwind tour of results from around the globe in the first two months of the year (26:00), including the early-season Golden Ticket races, the US road 100 mile championships, Tarawara, the Spine, and much more. (Unfortunately at one point I mistakenly say that Drew Holman is from the East Coast. Not sure what that’s about.)

Beer for this episode: Other Half/Equilibrium Lab Daydream, Start Line Brewing Hop Load

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Feb 28, 2020
Episode 50 - Reforming the Western States Lottery with Joe Uhan
01:11:22

Joe Uhan has been a mainstay of the West Coast ultra world since he burst onto the scene with competitive finishes at Chuckanut and the AR50 in 2011. Since then, he’s gone on to record top 10s at Western States, Lake Sonoma, Bandera, Waldo, and many other elite races. A well-respected coach and physical therapist, Joe has been involved with the Western States 100 ever since he first paced the race over a decade ago, as an athlete, volunteer, and therapist. Now as a coach, he has seen his athletes struggle with the frustration of the WS lottery—and he thinks he has a solution. In this episode, we talk about how Joe came to be involved with Western States, the formation of the current iteration of the WS lottery, the problems of the compounding ticket system, “premature” and “stale” lottery entrants, “lottery fatigue” and second-order effects, and how moving to a multi-tiered, non-compounding lottery could fix these issues.

Links:
The Olive Oil Joe origin story
The legend of Olive Oil Joe
Uhan Performance
Joe’s blog posts that formed the basis of this episode: Part I, Part II, and Part III

Desert Island Picks: Antifragile by Nassim Nicholas Taleb, Achtung Baby by U2, Ninkasi Spring Reign

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jan 31, 2020
Episode 49 - Debating the Mens' UROY with Phil Vondra and Rich Heffron
00:49:26

Since we ran incredibly long, we had to split up our UROY debate into two episodes. Here’s our mens’ discussion of UROY and POY.

Beer for this episode: Bissell Brothers Substance and Reciprocal

Links
Laura Kline on the 2017 ballot
Jason Mintz on the 2018 ballot
My final ballot in 2016, 2017, and 2018
And, after much consideration and debate, my final ballot for 2019, which differs somewhat from what we talk about in this episode

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Dec 30, 2019
Episode 48 - Debating the Womens' UROY with Phil Vondra and Rich Heffron
00:56:31

As always, I’m honored and excited to be included on the voting panel for Ultrarunning Magazine’s Ultrarunner of the Year. But as usual, this leads to days of internal debate and wondering what I’m doing wrong. This year I was lucky enough to be joined by my usual co-host, Phil Vondra, as well as Beastcoast ultra stud and former podcast guest Rich Heffron, so they could set me straight. We recorded this show last week, two days before ballots were due, and thus I was able to incorporate their sage perspectives into my final picks, which I’ve linked to below. In this show, Phil and I spent a quick fifteen minutes recapping some recent ultra results before Rich joined us to discuss our top 10 picks for UROY and our top 5 mens’ and womens’ Performances of the Year. For time purposes, we had to split this show into two episodes, so the men’s discussion will be presented separately.

Beer for this episode: Bissell Brothers Substance and Reciprocal

Links
Laura Kline on the 2017 ballot
Jason Mintz on the 2018 ballot
My final ballot in 2016, 2017, and 2018
And, after much consideration and debate, my final ballot for 2019, which differs somewhat from what we talk about in this episode

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Dec 30, 2019
Episode 47 - Pushing Boundaries with Maggie Guterl
01:11:00

Last month, Maggie Guterl became the first woman to win Big’s Backyard Ultra, the de facto world championship of the Last Man Standing format. This month, her career reaches new heights with her appearance in the Pain Cave! The Legend, Phil Vondra, joins us for a quick recap of the World Mountain Running Championships and the North Face Endurance Challenge championship before Maggie calls in to talk about her epic run at Big’s, 24-hour racing, the allure of Barkley’s, her favorite seltzer, and more.

Beer: Other Half Green Down to the Socks and Small Nelson

Maggie’s IGRugged Running

Desert Island Picks: an atlas, Bonobos, Polar Lime Seltzer

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the BloodlettersOutro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Nov 27, 2019
Episode 46 - This Month in Ultrarunning with Phil Vondra
01:10:57

The Legend is back in the co-pilot’s seat for another installment of TMIU. We start off with a whirlwind of results from around the globe before delving deep into the two biggest events of recent weeks: Big’s Backyard and the 24 hour World Championships. Along the way, we tackle the burning questions, like: how to we fix the USATF championship process? Do people root for Camille, or just respect her? What is a Moscato? Plus, we give our picks for the podium at this weekend’s North Face Championships.

Beer for this episode: Trillium Brewing Dialed-In Double IPA

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Nov 13, 2019
Episode 45 - Overcoming Adversity with Tom Kaplan
00:51:57

Whether hiking through the Alps, rock climbing in the Gunks, or hammering mountainous 100-mile races all over the US, you will not find a more amiable outdoor companion than Tom Kaplan—and you will not find an athlete more willing to push themselves past their breaking point. We welcomed the great TK into the Cave after his recent finish at the Bear 100 to talk about rock climbing, his mercurial Ironman career, how he was able to overcome DNFs in his first nine attempts at the 100-mile distance (and what kept him coming back again and again), how he (kind of) invented Strava, and more.

Beer: Southern Tier 8 Days a Week

TK’s IG

Desert Island Picks: Coors Light; The Gulag Archipelago by Aleksander Solzhenitsyn; Led Zeppelin III (though Tom later clarified he actually meant Zep IV, and said he wishes he’d picked The Last Waltz instead)

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Oct 18, 2019
Episode 44 - This Month in Ultrarunning with Phil Vondra
01:04:34

Fresh off an age group podium performance at the Bear 100, the Legend returns to the Pain Cave for another installment of This Month in Ultrarunning. As it’s been almost two months since our last episode, we have a lot of ground to cover! We start with our thoughts on another wild UTMB week, including Courtney’s historic performance and what’s wrong with the US men. Then it’s our trademark blitz through everything happening in the trail and ultra world, including Zach Bitter’s amazing 100 mile WR, Leadville, Pikes Peak, the conclusion of the Grand Slam, the penultimate races in the Golden Trail Series, our obligatory Jim and Killian conversations, and much more.

We had all kinds of technical issues with this episode; unfortunately, the last 10 minutes or so are lost to the ether of my computer. Sorry about the problems there! You mostly missed Phil discussing his race at the Bear and brief recaps of the Cat’s Tail Trail Marathon and the Grindstone 100.

Beer for this episode: Frost Beer Works Plush and Lush, courtesy of Kirsten Kortz

Links
As discussed a number of times, the Billy Yang Podcast (including his UTMB recap and interviews with Justin Grunewald and Lucy Bartholomew)

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Oct 11, 2019
Episode 43 - AT FKT Attempt Recap with Kristian Morgan
00:44:59

In June, we spoke with inov-8 athlete Kristian Morgan as he prepared for an audacious attempt on the FKT for the Appalachian Trail—an attempt that was aborted less than a week in. Kristian was kind enough to return to the Pain Cave to discuss what went wrong, how he’s dealing with the disappointment of having to let go of this goal, what he learned that he’ll take forward, running in the White Mountains, hurling, and more.

Links
Kristian’s pre-AT interview
Kristian’s website
The AT FKT

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Oct 08, 2019
Episode 42 - This Month in Ultrarunning with Phil Vondra
00:51:05

The Legend returns from his pilgrimage back to the motherland for the latest installment of TMIU. We pat ourselves on the back for some not-terrible WSER predictions and recap the biggest storylines and surprises from Auburn (2:30) before discussing the doping mini-controversies clouding the podiums at Sierre-Zinal last weekend (19:30). Then it’s our whirlwind recap of the trail and ultra results of the past month (28:00), including Fat Dog, Eastern States, Badwater, Laveredo, AC100, and many more; before we touch on the shitstorm surrounding the entry process for the Last Annual Vol State (39:30) and Laz’s cult of personality.

Beer for this episode: Hill Farmstead Nelson, courtesy of Kirsten Kortz

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Aug 15, 2019
Episode 41 - Western States Preview with Phil Vondra
00:51:20

Oh boy! It’s the best time of year…Western States time! And the Legend himself, Phil Vondra, is fired up to talk about it. Before we dig into what’s going to happen this weekend, though, we’ve got a bunch of news and results to get through, including Phil’s recap of this past weekend’s Manitou’s Revenge (1:30), the cancellation of the Hardrock 100 (5:00), the untimely passing of Mark Richtman (10:00), and results from around the globe (11:30), including Comrades, the Trail World Championships, Bighorn, Mohican, Broken Arrow, and more. Then it’s finally time to dive into Western States (26:00), where we discuss Jim and Courtney’s chances to repeat, who we expect to bounce back with big performances, some dark horses to watch, and out picks for the podiums.

Beer for this episode: Fort Point Animal Tropical IPA

Links:
Hardrock 100 cancellation announcement
AJW’s remembrance of Mark Richtman
irunfar’s men’s and women’s WS100 previews

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 25, 2019
Episode 40 - ReWiring the Brain with Sun Sachs and Laura Kline
00:47:28

We’ve talked a lot on the show about the role that the brain plays in determining performance in endurance events, but we haven’t talked so much about how we can actually modify the brain’s response to physical stress in order to improve our performance. In part, that’s because this is a very difficult thing to practically address. Sun Sachs is here to change that. Sun is the co-founder of ReWire Cycling, a tech startup that is aiming to bring “brain training” to the endurance sport masses. Sun joined us in the Pain Cave last month to talk about how is background in cycling helped develop his interest in the mental side of the sport, the work of Samuel Marcora, the lowdown on “response inhibition training” and how he and his partner developed the app that may change how we view mental training for endurance athletes. Then, we welcomed back the great Laura Kline (32:30) to talk about her experience as a beta tester for the app, the changes she’s noticed in her performance, and more.

ReWire Cycling just launched a Kickstarter campaign to help secure funding for mass production of the app and the device we talked about here. If this campaign is successful, we may see this come to market in early 2020. Check out the links below and consider supporting them!

Links
Our interview with Alex Hutchinson, where we talked a bunch about Marcora and brain training (and Alex’s excellent book)
ReWire Cycling
The Kickstarter campaign
Laura’s website and her blog post from her most recent race, where she says she drew on the mental training she’d practiced with the app
Our last interview with Laura

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 19, 2019
Episode 39 - Assault on the AT with Kristian Morgan
00:44:08

If you aren’t yet familiar with the name Kristian Morgan, you will be this summer. On July 1, the London-based ultrarunner will leave Springer Mountain, GA, aiming to become the first person to complete the Appalachian Trail in less than 40 days. Last month, after a final reconnaissance mission on the trail’s southern section, Kristian called in from across the pond to talk about why he likes racing hundreds, how lo prepare for a mountain race in London, Tour de Geants, his experience with Karel Sabbe on the AT last summer, FKT culture in the UK, and more.

Links
Kristian’s website, including tracking for the AT and coaching info
Feet in the Clouds
The Bob Graham Round
Karel Sabbe’s AT FKT
Desert Island Picks: Are You Experienced? by the Jimi Hendrix Experience, Gipsy Hill Hepcat

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 14, 2019
Episode 38 - This Month in Ultrarunning with Phil Vondra
00:40:44

After a few quiet weeks on the ultra scene, the season starts heating up again, and The Legend returns to discuss all the latest happenings. We start off by recapping Phil’s race this past weekend at the Cayuga Trails 50, the US trail 50-mile championships, and some of the other storylines coming out of Ithaca. We also tackle the possibility of a cancellation at Hardrock, record chasing at Project Carbon X, Dawn to Dusk to Dawn and the US teams for the 24-hour world championships, recent results from the Backyard/Last Man series, unbreakable records, and more.

Beer for this episode: Foam Brewers Pavement

Links:
Red Mountain Pass SNOTEL site, which will factor into a go/no-go call for Hardrock (probably next week)
Project Carbon X
US 24-hour teams
AJW’s unbreakable trail 100 mile records

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 04, 2019
Episode 37 - A Conversation with Sherpa John Lacroix
00:53:04

As an athlete, filmmaker, and a race director, Sherpa John Lacroix is a seminal figure in the modern version of the sport of ultrarunning—and one who’s not afraid to ruffle a few feathers either. We caught up with Sherpa John for a fun conversation about his roots in hiking and backpacking (1:30), how he cut his teeth in race directing and may have semi-accidentally started the OCR craze (7:05), his current race series (29:00), ultrarunning as therapy (31:45), commercialization in the sport, his favorite races, and more.

Links
48, Sherpa John’s film about peak bagging in the White Mountains
Human Potential Running Series
The Burro Racing World Championships
Desert Island Picks: Forest and Crag by Laura and Guy Waterman, the Lumineers, Odell Brewing 90 Shilling

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

May 22, 2019
Episode 36 - Tackling Nutrition with Jonathan Clinthorne
00:48:27

Sifting through the various dietary and nutritional approaches to our sport (vegan! low carb! gluten-free! fruitarian!) can be confusing and, frankly, exhausting. Don’t worry, though: elite runner/nutrition PhD/Ultrarunning magazine coverboy Jonathan Clinthorne joins us in the Pain Cave to help us sort through it all. We talked about his background as the second-fastest ultrarunning former lacrosse player to graduate from Michigan State, various approaches to a traditional carbohydrate-rich approach, the benefits and limitations of a low-carbohydrate/ketogenic diet, and more.

Links
A little background on Jonathan
Our interview with the fastest ultrarunning former lacrosse-playing MSU grad
The Art and Science of Low-Carbohydrate Performance
The recent IAAF Consensus Statement for nutrition in athletes
Desert Island Picks: The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follet, Led Zeppelin III, Bell’s Two-Hearted IPA

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

May 07, 2019
Episode 35 - This Month in Ultrarunning with Phil Vondra
00:59:59

After a too-long absence, the Shawangunk Express is back in the co-pilot’s chair for our kind-of-monthly roundup of all the goings-on in the ultra and trail scenes. We start by recapping a second straight no-finishers year at Barkley (2:30) before digging in to all the hullabaloo surrounding the most recent Golden Ticket race, the Georgia Death Race (9:45). Then it’s time for a whirlwind tour of all the ultra results we’ve missed, including the Fourmidable 50K, Way Too Cool, Black Canyons, Chuckanut, and much more (23:35). Plus, we lament the rash of early-season injuries (49:15), and a very brief preview of this weekend’s upcoming showdown at Lake Sonoma (51:15).

Beer for this episode: Other Half 4th Anniversary Imperial IPA

Links:
Stephanie Case’s recap from Barkley
AJW on the GDR controversy
US teams for the World Trail Championships
Lake Sonoma start list

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "The Mountains Win Again" by Blues Traveler

Apr 11, 2019
Episode 34 - Chasing Records with Mike Wardian
01:00:12

Mike Wardian has been at the forefront of the sport of ultrarunning for over a decade, but even by his lofty standards, 2019 is off to quite a start. After sweeping all seven marathons to win his second World Marathon Challenge (en route to setting a new world record for the fastest ten marathons in ten days), Mike journeyed to Israel to attempt a new Fastest Known Time on the 631-mile Israel National Trail. We caught up with Mike to talk about his experience on the INT (1:30), why he returned to the World Marathon Challenge (30:30), recovery (36:00), defining success, traveling with family, lacrosse, and more.

Links
Mike’s website
The Israel National Trail
Zoli Bihari, who set up the FKT attempt, runs the touring company Canaan Running Adventures
The World Marathon Challenge
Desert Island Picks: A giant combination dictionary and thesaurus, Big Spoon Almond Butter, The Lumineers

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Apr 03, 2019
Episode 33 - This Month in Ultrarunning with Phil Vondra
01:00:40

The Legend is back! Finally! After a three-month absence, the Don Draper of ultrarunning returns for our latest installment of This Month in Ultrarunning, the craze that’s sweeping the nation. Phil and I start off with some final thoughts on the 2018 UROY and FKTOY voting (3:30) before turning our attention to the new year. We discuss some recent ultra-related news and headlines (14:30) before a rundown off all the early season action (30:00), including results from the Spine, Hong Kong, 9 Dragons, Tarawera, Bandera, Rocky Raccoon, and more. We finish up with a brief look ahead to this weekend’s second Golden Ticket race, the Black Canyon 100K (51:30).

Beer for this episode: Alchemist Holy Cow

Links:
Our full UROY podcast with Jason Mintz, and my final UROY ballot
Ultrarunning Magazine’s most competitive races list
Our interview with Mike Siudy, the King of the Catskills
Koop’s article on the state of ultrarunning competition
Ross Tucker’s article on Caster Semenya
Another really good article by Ross on some of those issues and more
Runner attacked, kills mountain lion. (Since we recorded, he’s come forward.)
We made a brief mention at the end about my coaching services, including guaranteed entry into Leadville via the LT100 Coaching + Entry package

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Feb 15, 2019
Episode 32 - Running Biomechanics with Geoff Burns
01:12:09

If you don’t follow the sport of ultrarunning outside of the big trail races, you may not know the name Geoff Burns…but you should. Geoff is one of the top road ultramarathoners in the US; he is the 2016 national champion at 100K, and has finished fifth at each of the last two 100K World Championships. He’s also a doctoral student in biomechanics at the University of Michigan, and he joined the show to help get us back in touch with our science-of-the-sport roots. We talked about running for the Wolverines (2:30), his recent research on stride frequency (9:30) and the implications it has for training and racing (28:00), the utility of wearable power meters for runners (36:30), representing the US in international competition (45:20), his experience at Comrades (where he placed 12th) in 2018 (52:30), his plans for 2019, and more.

Links
Geoff’s paper in JAP
Alex Hutchinson’s article on Geoff’s research (our interview with Alex here)
Chris Lear’s Sub-4:00, about Alan Webb and Michigan running
Desert Island Picks: The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoefsky, Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen, Trader Joe’s Beef Tamales, Taylor’s 1963 Vintage Port

Jan 15, 2019
Episode 31 - Debating the UROY Ballot with Jason Mintz
01:21:47

For the fourth straight year, I’m both thrilled and appalled at being asked to vote for Ultrarunning Magazine’s Ultrarunner of the Year…and for the second straight year, I’ve asked one of my toughest critics to join me on the show to tell me how badly I’m screwing it up. This time, we did it early enough that I could actually make a few changes to the ballot! Upstate NY ultra stud Jason Mintz enters the Pain Cave to discuss our choices for the top 10 men and women of the year, top five performances of the year, the difficulty of weighing performances in overseas races, how much DNFs should count against you, and more. Check back next week for my blog post detailing my final choices.

Links
My debate with Laura Kline over the 2017 ballot
My final ballot in 2016 and 2017

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Dec 25, 2018
Episode 30 - Running Happy with David Roche
01:00:52

David and Megan Roche are one of the power couples in US trail and ultra running today, with seven national championships between them. Not only that, they’re the brains behind Team SWAP and the coaches of some of the most successful athletes in the country, including recent winners of Western States, Leadville, Run Rabbit Run, and more. Not only that, they’re also the authors of The Happy Runner, a new book that just might change the way you view training, racing, and life. David joins us in the Pain Cave to talk about the importance of self-acceptance, how to “let go” of our dependence on results, the principles of his training and coaching philosophy, and much more.

Links
Team SWAP
Buy The Happy Runner
David’s (dog’s) Instagram
Desert Island Picks: Catch-22 by Joseph Heller, Tupac’s Greatest Hits, Brooklyn Cider House (I chose this specific one for him!)

Dec 14, 2018
Episode 29 - Epic Adventures with Pete Kostelnick
01:02:04

We had so much fun talking with one of the fastest US women ever at 24 hours (Megan Alvarado) that we decided to do the same for the men. Pete Kostelnick is a two-time winner and the course record holder at the famed Badwater 135, as well as #5 on the all-time US 24-hour list, but he’s perhaps best known for his record-setting run across America in 2016, breaking Frank Giannino’s 36-year old record by more than four days. This summer Pete took it to a new extreme, running 5300+ miles self-supported from the Kenai Peninsula in Alaska to Key West, Florida—a diagonal crossing of the continent—in just under 100 days. I spoke with Pete about how he got into running long distances (1:30), his experiences at Badwater (10:40), racing 24 hours (16:00), his record TransAmerica run (27:30), and his amazing “Ke2Key” adventure (37:00).

Links
Pete’s Feet Across America
Pete’s Instagram
Desert Island Picks: Born to Run by Christopher McDougall, Dizzy Up the Girl by the Goo Goo Dolls, Lagunitas Hop Stoopid, Ska Brewing Modus Hoperandi

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Dec 06, 2018
Episode 28 - Biking, Babies, and Blasting the JFK 50 with Kate Pallardy
01:24:20

The cancellation of the North Face championships meant that many of the top athletes who had been aiming to end their season in northern CA wound up journeying east for the venerable JFK 50 mile, the oldest ultramarathon in the country. The smart money was on previous winner Leah Frost (#3 all-time at JFK) or former Western States champ Kaci Lickteig for the women’s crown. But when the dust settled, it was Beast Coaster Kate Pallardy who scored a convincing win in 6:40. We welcomed Kate into the Pain Cave to talk about her background as a pro triathlete, training on the mean streets of NYC, how she balances homeschooling (and breastfeeding) her kids with training to run fast marathons and ultras, and how she found her passion in sport and in life.

Links
Kate’s Instagram feed
The country’s oldest ultra, the JFK 50
Desert Island Picks: Killing the SS by Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard, Mozart: Overtures on Spotify, Harpoon Camp Wannamango

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Nov 29, 2018
Episode 27 - Racing 24 Hours with Megan Alvarado
00:42:55

In the past few years, as ultrarunning and trail racing in particular has continued to grow in popularity, there’s been a concurrent increase in the number of world-class racers exploring their limits in timed events, and the competition at these races has become fierce. This week we welcomed Altra/T-Starr Running/Drymax athlete Megan Alvarado, the newly crowned US 24-hour champion, into the Pain Cave. Megan and I spoke about balancing 24-hour racing and trail racing (6:10), training on the treadmill (10:00), how she approaches a timed event (22:50), increasing female participation in the sport (29:00), and her Desert Island Picks (39:20).

Links
Megan’s Ultrasignup page and Instagram
How to help wildfire victims
Here’s a running-related fundraiser I donated to
Megan’s Desert Island Picks: The Brave Athlete by Dr. Simon Marshall and Lesley Paterson; Spotify Motivation Mix playlist; Diet Cherry 7Up

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Nov 16, 2018
Episode 26 - Running, Spirituality, and Transcendence with Sanjay Rawal
00:55:40

Ultrarunner and filmmaker Sanjay Rawal joins the Pain Cave to talk about his latest documentary, 3100: Run and Become. The movie follows competitors in the 2016 Self-Transcendence Run, a 3100-mile ultramarathon around a single city blog in Queens. In exploring the secret of what drives these runners, the film journeys to a Navajo reservation in Arizona, the Kalahari Desert in southern Africa, and the Buddhist temples deep in the mountains of Japan, to discover the spirituality that underlies the reasons why we run. Sanjay and I discuss Sri Chinmoy, the guru whose teachings inspired the Self-Transcendence Run, motivation, filming, multi-day racing, and how to find meaning in our running.

Links
The Self-Transcendence Run
More about Sri Chinmoy
Sanjay’s IMDB page
Desert Island Picks: The Complete Poems of Walt Whitman, Greatest Hits by The Cure, Bitburger Alcohol-free Pils

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Nov 07, 2018
Episode 25 - This Month in Ultrarunning with Phil Vondra
00:46:46

The Legend returns to the Pain Cave to rescue you from the ultrarunning doldrums, with recaps of the insanity at Big’s Backyard (3:00), Hennepin Hundred (27:45), North Coast, Run Rabbit, and more.

This episode was recorded last week, before Javelina Jundred, which we’ll recap in our next episode.

Also, I did want to point out one error/omission from this episode. While discussing Barkley (why are we always discussing Barkley?!), we were trying to name women who have finished a “fun run” and could only come up with Beverly Anderson-Abbs. A little research revealed two other women have completed three laps on the course: Eliza McLean in 2000 and Sue Johnston in 2001. (Bev has finished two fun runs, in 2012 and 2013.) Thanks to Matt Mahoney for that data and sorry for the mistake.

Beer for this episode: Start Line Brewing Hop Load IPA

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Oct 30, 2018
Episode 24 - Jim Sweeney is Crazy Fast
00:45:28

The fastest 100-mile of 2018 doesn’t come from a resident of California, Colorado, or Arizona, but from right here in upstate New York. Albany’s Jim Sweeney sits down in the Pain Cave to discuss his cool new gig at the West Kill Brewery (1:00), his background in ultrarunning and how his training has progressed heading into his breakthrough 2018 season (3:00), his early-season success at Umstead (13:00), and his astounding 13:09 at the Hennepin Hundred, one of the top 15 US times ever. We also get into his upcoming race plans (31:45), some staple workouts and training approaches (38:00), and his Desert Island Picks (42:10).

Links
West Kill Brewing
Desert Island Picks: The Stranger by Albert Camus, Spiritual Machines by Our Lady Peace, Left Hand Bittersweet Nitro

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Oct 19, 2018
Episode 23 - TDS Recap with Dylan Bowman
01:08:32

It may have been a disappointing year for many of the top Americans at UTMB, but US runners came through with podium finishes at TDS, the 121km companion race. We welcome mens’ runner-up Dylan Bowman to the Pain Cave to talk about his fantastic early season (4:45), how he prepares for big mountain races (20:15), his race at TDS (33:00), the carnage at UTMB (49:55), his plans for the rest of the year (61:15), and his Desert Island Picks (65:00).

Links
Dyaln’s website
Video of DBo’s Lost Coast Trail FKT
Finish of TDS
Desert Island Picks: Graceland by Paul Simon, ‘Til the Medicine Takes by Widespread Panic, Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari, New Belgium Fat Tire Ale

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Sep 17, 2018
Episode 22 - Emergency "What the Hell Happened at UTMB" Pod with Phil Vondra
00:33:46

We hadn't planned on a UTMB recap episode, but after the craziness that transpired last weekend in Chamonix, Phil and I had to sit down for an emergency pod to discuss Killian's allergic reaction, Xavier's redemption, disappointment for the US men and women, and what this all means going forward.

Tonight's beer: Zero Gravity Grand Royal

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Sep 06, 2018
Episode 21 - For Ultra Geeks Only: UTMB preview with Phil Vondra
01:14:20

Ultra geeks rejoice! We're joined once again by our "This Month in Ultrarunning" partner in crime, Phil Vondra, for an in-depth preview of UTMB. Phil and I recap a fantastic week in Colorado, including Leadville (2:00), Pike's Peak (15:30), and Transrockies (21:00), plus other news and results from the ultra world (24:00), before we go deep on everything happening in Chamonix, including results from TDS and our look at the contenders for OCC, CCC, and UTMB (32:45).

Links
Tonight's beer: the Other Half Nelson + Mosaic
Koop's Leadville writeup
Mountain Peak Fitness' photos and videos from Leadville
irunfar's UTMB mens' and womens' previews

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Aug 30, 2018
Episode 20 - This Month in Ultrarunning with Phil Vondra
00:55:00

The Legend returns to the Cave for this month's installment of TMIU, where we quickly recap some of the major storylines from Western States (3:00) before dissecting Perrier-gate at Hardrock (11:00). We also discuss the controversy surrounding the awards at the Vermont 100 (38:00), review some results from Lavaredo and Cayuga Trails, and get into some recent FKTs.

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Aug 06, 2018
Episode 19 - Overcoming Injuries with Heidi Armstrong
00:48:38

Look, if we do these things for long enough, eventually we're likely to get injured. And those of us who have been there know the truth: just like training and racing, recovering from an injury is as much a mental exercise as it is a physical one. In this episode we chat with former elite mountain biker and injury recovery specialist Heidi Armstrong, founder of The Injured Athlete's Toolbox, to learn how to deal with and overcome injuries. We talked about Heidi's athletic background and how she developed an interest in recovery (1:30), the terms athletes use to describe how being injured makes us feel (9:30), the role social media can play in recovery (18:00), how an injured athlete can move towards acceptance and recovery (20:10), and how to recognize when we need help dealing with our injuries (32:55). If you're injured, or have been injured, or will get injured (hint: that's all of us!), this is a good listen.

Links:
The Injured Athlete's Toolbox
Contact Heidi by email
EMDR therapy
Desert Island Picks: When Things Fall Apart by Pema Chodron, Woodface by Crowded House

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jul 26, 2018
Episode 18 - The Catskill 35 FKT with Mike Siudy
01:20:01

The new King of the Catskills, Mike Siudy, visits the Pain Cave following his incredible FKT of the "Direttissima"--a continuous, 140+ mile tagging of the thirty-five 3500' peaks in the Catskill Mountains. We start with how Mike's background as a climber and hiker prepared him for a career in ultrarunning (2:35), how he became a Gridiot (11:40), Ted "Cave Dog" Keizer's pioneering route (16:25), and how it all went down on Memorial Day weekend (19:45). Plus, we chat about the Barkley Marathons (57:00) and Manitou's Revenge (which Mike co-directs with Charlie Gadol) before digging into his Desert Island Picks (1:13:15).

Links
Mike's MPF/RNR page
Industrial Arts Brewing
The original Catskills nightmare, the Escarpment Trail Run
On becoming a Gridiot
Cave Dog
The Direttissima
Manitou's Revenge and Cat's Tail Trail Marathon, the brainchildren of WTF Racing
Desert Island Picks: The Games Climbers Play by Ken Wilson, Southsiders by Atmosphere, West Kill Brewing's Moonfarmer IPA

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jul 09, 2018
Episode 17 - State of the Sport with Eric Schranz
00:42:17

The Pain Cave journeys west to the venerable Western States 100, where I was pacing our very first podcast guest, Brian Oestrike. Since I was in town, I was able to finagle a sit-down with the great Eric Schranz of Ultrarunnerpodcast.com. As we recorded the day before the big show, Eric and I spent a few minutes discussing how we thought the day might play out (1:45), before we addressed some of the issues at the forefront of our sport, including the East Coast/West Coast divide (6:45), PEDs and TUEs (10:45), the primacy of WS100 and controversies it engenders (23:00), and the sustainability of growth in the sport (30:40).

Links
Ultrarunnerpodcast.com
Eric's recent interview with Jenny Jurek
The aforementioned/oft-discussed profile of Coree Woltering
Improving youth participation
Desert Island Picks: Athletic Brewing Company, Deeper Understanding by War on Drugs, Joshua Tree by U2,

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 28, 2018
Episode 16 - For Ultra Geeks Only: Bighorn Recap and WS100 Preview
00:59:25

It's only been two week since our last TMIU episode, but we're too excited for this weekend to wait! We welcome home the Legend, Phil Vondra, to recap his epic run at last weekend's Bighorn 100 (2:10), briefly review some recent results from Comrades, Broken Arrow, and Mount Washington (17:00), and dig deep into our Western States preview (24:00).

Links
Black Tooth Brewing Hot Streak IPA
AJW's recent post on avoiding DNFs

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 21, 2018
Episode 15 - Joe Puleo
01:08:23

The occasion for this episode is the release of the second edition of Running Anatomy, which Joe co-authored with Patrick Milroy. We spent some time talking about Joe's experience writing the book initially (8:00), what the impetus was for the second edition (11:15), the idea of functional versus general strength (17:20), why coaching remains such an important part of his life (26:15), his work with Jorge Maravilla (33:30), and why distance runners are such prolific drinkers (45:45)...and of course, Joe's Desert Island Picks (56:00). Hope you enjoy this one despite the sound issues, it really is a worthwhile conversation.

Links
Running Anatomy, Second Edition
Joe's old store, Haddonfield Running Company
Man's Search For Meaning by Viktor Frankl
Hopes and Fears, Keane
21st Amendment Hell or High Watermelon

Intro: "What We Need" by Bannister Effect
Outtro: "Flaw in My Design" by Bannister Effect

Jun 18, 2018
Episode 14 - This Month in Ultrarunning with Phil Vondra
00:44:44

Despite--or due to--engaging a bit too aggressively in the Avery Collins training plan, I had a blast recording the most recent installment of TMIU (a.k.a. FOR ULTRA GEEKS ONLY) with the Legend himself, Phil Vondra. (I did need to edit out a three-minute spasm of giggles about 35 minutes in.) We chatted about Phil's prep for Bighorn, the first of two 100s on the schedule for him this summer (4:20), before we discuss some recent race results (9:00), Mike Siudy's epic Catskill FKT (25:00), and the races and storylines we'll be keeping an eye on in the next few weeks (39:00).

Links: Hudson Valley Brewery Empyrium
Burial Beer Company Gang of Blades
Zach Miller's recap of the IAU World Trail Championships
Mike Siudy's FKT report
Where is Harvey?

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jun 05, 2018
Episode 13 - Exercise Science 101 with Dr. Jason Karp
00:42:35

As we delve back into the science of running, we've noticed that there are a lot of terms and shorthand we use that may not be familiar to everyone out there. Most of us have heard the terms "VO2 max" and "lactate threshold," but do we understand what those things really mean, or how they relate to our endurance pursuits? For this episode we decided to get back to basics with one of the most knowledgeable exercise physiologists and running coaches in the country, Dr. Jason Karp. Dr. Karp is the author of over 400 articles and eight books on running, and he is the perfect guest to help us develop a deeper understanding of the physiologic parameters that govern performance.

We start out by defining the major parameters: VO2max, lactate threshold, and running economy (9:30), and delve into what these parameters actually mean for our physiology (17:00). Then, we discuss the different types of training that we can use to target each of these parameters (19:00), before examining the utility of repeat physiologic testing (29:30) and how these parameters factor into the brain's regulation of performance (33:00).

Links: Dr. Karp's website
Revolution Running

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

May 14, 2018
Episode 12 - Ultrarunning Media and Bias with Rich Heffron
01:08:45

We're getting back to the science stuff next week, but today we've got another episode for ultra geeks.  Spurred by Trail Runner magazine's recent profile on Coree Woltering, teammate Rich Heffron joins the show to discuss the current state of ultrarunning media.  We tackle the question of whether there is a West Coast bias in ultra coverage (7:00), whether media organizations in the sport have an obligation to cover certain events (26:00), why USATF championship races aren't a bigger deal (31:30), and the geographic distribution of Western States qualifiers (51:30).  We also name-check some non-West Coast ultrarunners who deserve more respect (55:35) before we get Rich's Desert Island Picks (1:03:50).

Links: Rich's MPF/RNR bio page

The aforementioned Coree Woltering profile in Trail Runner

My beer for the episode: Dogfish Head 60-minute IPA

Rich's Desert Island Picks: Currents by Tame impala, Why We Run by Bernd Heinrich, Left Hand Nitro Milk Stout

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

May 02, 2018
Episode 11 - This Month in Ultrarunning with Phil Vondra
00:58:54

We're starting something new in the Pain Cave this week.  We love delving into the science of sport, but sometimes we just want to kick back with a couple of beers and be geeky ultra fans.  We're going to try to dedicate an episode each month to the stories and athletes making headlines in our sport, recapping the big races, examining the storylines that are intriguing us, and looking forward to upcoming races we're excited about.  For this project I've recruited my good friend, training partner, and beer aficionado Phil Vondra.

As this is the first one of these, we've got a lot of ground to cover.  We start by recapping the Golden Ticket season, including Lake Sonoma (4:30), some under-the-radar stories from the GT series (12:30), and the performances that surprised us the most (16:00).  After that, we discuss many of the biggest stories from the first few months of the season, including US runners dominating Tarawera (26:30), a disappointing Barkley Marathons (37:30), the "Kenyafornia" project (44:15), Camille Herron's early season (46:45), and some ultrarunners tackling a tough Boston Marathon (52:00), before we quickly preview some of the upcoming races we're excited about in the next month (54:45).

Links:  The beer we drank during this episode
Phil's guest post on my blog last year

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Apr 24, 2018
Episode 10 - Laura Kline
00:41:49

We welcome back Unived and Altra athlete Laura Kline to the program in the wake of her runner-up performance at the national 50K championships.  Laura talks about her athletic background, how she got into ultras, recaps her recent race at Caumsett, and gives us the lowdown on how she succeeds as a vegan, gluten-free athlete.

Links: 
Laura's website

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Mar 22, 2018
Episode 09 - Exploring the Limits of Endurance with Alex Hutchinson
00:42:38

Author, physicist (?), journalist, and world-class miler Alex Hutchinson calls in from the Great White North to discuss his recently released book, Endure: Mind, Body, and the Curiously Elastic Limits of Human Performance.  We discuss the role the mind plays in endurance performance (2:30), the work of Tim Noakes and the various ways it informs our understanding of exercise physiology (10:15), why positive emotions enhance your performance (21:30), and techniques we can use to improve our mental outlook (28:30).  Plus, in a new segment, Alex tells us what he's bringing to a desert island (36:30).  This is one of the best books on running I've ever read; you don't want to miss the episode.  (And buy the book, it's awesome!)

Links: 
Alex's Website

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Mar 05, 2018
Episode 08 - Dr. Zubair Jafar on Sports Cardiology and the Athlete's Heart
00:28:32

Dr. Zubair Jafar, the head of the Sports Cardiology program at the Heart Center, joins us in the Pain Cave to talk about the athlete's heart.  This is an important episode for anyone with cardiac concerns or risk factors, or anyone who is curious about safely beginning an exercise regimen.  We discuss the importance of exercise in maintaining good health, the benefits of hight-intensity training, some potential cardiac complications of long-term aerobic exercise, the utility of different cardiovascular tests, the need for cardiac screening, and the potential for performance improvement.  

Links: 
Heart Center Sports Cardiology Program

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters
Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Feb 16, 2018
Episode 07 - Heat Training for the HURT 100 with Brian Oestrike
00:41:30

It's a bit early to start repeating guests, but we couldn't ignore the performance of our inaugural guest, Brian Oestrike, at the famous HURT 100 mile earlier this month.  Brian sits down with a couple of  awesome double IPAs to discuss how he prepared for a race in Hawaii while training in New York in December, what separates HURT from some of the other legendary trail 100s, his early-race mental struggles, the differences between multi-loop and point-to-point races, and more. 

If you haven't already, make sure to go back to episode 01 for lots of fun stuff with Brian, including the Bighorn 100, mountaineering/ultrarunning crossover, altitude training, and lots more beer talk.

Links:

Brian's heat adaptation protocol: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aHOlM-wlNjM

A plug: http://hypoxico.com

Intro music: "Fine Line" by the Bloodletters

Outro music: "When I Was Still Young" by Yard Sale

Jan 31, 2018