Jennifer was never an athletic kid, always picked last at PE, made fun of for her weight, struggled with body image and eating disorders in high school through grad school eventually gained a lot of weight in college, decided to start running her junior year and gradually worked up to her first 5k two years later, then ran her first marathon a few years after that. She ran on and off for the next 10 years and trained for her first ultra-distance. After having her son, she jumped back into running, but found out she had a torn labrum in her left hip, had surgery followed by a long rehab, eventually she switched to trails and ran more ultras including a 50 miler.
Jennifer’s transition into photography began when she met her friend Kristy through a FB group, started pacing her at Ornery Mule Racing events and took cell phone pics of her while at races. The RD would frequently repost her pics and eventually offered to hire her to photograph some races. Jennifer gradually took over photographing all of their races as well as some in other states. Health issues have prevented Jennifer from training for her own races, so this is a way for her to stay involved in the community.
Jennifer has the most amazing attitude and the way she deals with setbacks is inspiring. We talk about Jennifer’s ultra-marathons and the Barkley Fall Classic. We discuss her many injuries and how she always reinvents herself to stay involved in a community she loves. Jennifer’s transition into photographing races is a great story. “It’s never too late to go for a big dream – don’t be the obstacle”.
Jennifer is also a contributor to Silent Sports Magazine and Ultra Runner Magazine.
Advice and well wishes and lots of love for the runners of Season 12! Enjoy!
Coach Ellie Greenwood fields questions from Dayna and Natalie who always have great and unique questions. You only get one first ultra so it will be awesome to see what these women do with theirs! Ellie shares that neither one of these runners missed a sinlge training assignment. So impressive and we are sure it will pay off. Enjoy the show!
Dave has had some ups and downs for sure in this training cycle. From oppressive desert heat to a nagging achilles issue, he has weathered it all and is ready to test himself in Florida at Jack's 50k. His coach Dawn answers last minute questions and makes sure he is ready to go run her race in her late brother's name. Enjoy the show.
So much of the last few weeks leading up to your first ultra is the mental game of it all. Having a coach who understands this and can give you perspective is so helpful for first time ultra runners. On this episode, coach Hillary fields questions and lays out what to expect on race day for Jason and Katie! Enjoy the show.
As Jackson reports back from his first ultra, a few weeks before the rest of the Season 12 crew, we get to learn how it all went down for him. Did he make good pre race nutrition decisions? Did he hit any walls? Nick on the other hand still has a few weeks of training to get ready for the Florida ultra and he asks more specific race day questions. Enjoy the show.
Colleen Rue is a 2x Ironman finisher, Ultra-marathoner, marathon maniac and an endurance fanatic. She is a wife and mother of two teenagers and has 20+ years’ experience as a coach, personal trainer, and instructor in the fitness industry. Known as the Voice of the Mountain at 29029 Everesting events, she has been all over the US as a host, emcee, and race announcer. Colleen has an ability to connect people with brands and events in a way that fosters personal growth and develops bonds for life.
Be brave and do not be afraid of no. Wise words from Colleen, and words that have served her well. This was such a fun conversation for us. Colleen is so genuine and open; we could have continued this conversation for hours. Colleen shares her journey to becoming the voice of the mountain for 29029 Everesting events and the voice of Vacation races. We also talk running ultras and Trans Rockies and so much more. Colleen has several ultras under her belt and lots of great stories. We know you will enjoy Colleen as much as we did!
Dayna had an awful time on a recent trail marathon and she is using that lesson in her fueling now and has seen positive results. Natalie runs at all hours after international travel. Both women do their beer mile. It was a great chat with a few of our favorite people. Enjoy the show!
Training for his first ultra in the super hot desert climate is tough but when the weather starts to change everything seems to come together. That is where David is with his training and longer efforts. Enjoy the show that shares the journey of new ultra runners!
As Jackson gets ready for his upcoming effort in Minnesota, we talk about mindset and strategy for the 50k. Nick is hitting longest runs most weeks now and continues to train hard! Enjoy the show about the journey of first time ultra runners!
Rebecca Roehm never dreamed that she would be running for the fun of it. Growing up in Ohio, she played basketball and tennis and always considered running as a punishment. In 2016, the only open treadmill at the gym jump started her foray into running. With the help of a friend and a new pair of running shoes, Rebecca signed up for her first 5k. Less than 18 months later, Rebecca found herself as one of the featured runners on Season 4 of Becoming Ultra where she completed the Minnesota Voyageur 50 miler.
The experience of the Becoming Ultra project has led Rebecca to continually challenge herself. One of the lessons she took away from the experience was that it is important to do hard things. When asked why she runs ultras she responds, “If you aren’t challenging yourself, you aren’t growing as a person.” Some of her notable races include the New York City Marathon, Chicago Marathon, Zion 50k, Bandera 100k, the Javelina Jundred 100 miler, and most recently the Last Annual Vol State 500k.
When Rebecca is not working or running, she is traveling with her husband, volunteering, and co-leading the local Portland Oregon chapter of Trail Sisters. One of her passions is increasing the participation of women in sports, especially trail running. She hopes that her experiences as an athlete can inspire others to try something new and do hard things.
We had a lot of fun talking to our friend, Rebecca. This lady is one of the most supportive people we have ever met. She embodies everything the Becoming Ultra community stands for. Rebecca takes us from her first Ultra, a 50 miler to most recently the Vol State 500k and everything in between. She talks about chasing cutoffs and not getting discouraged by finishing DFL or even a DNF. She is wise enough to know there is value in every experience. Listening to Rebecca will inspire you to do something big!
Caitlin grew up in Oakland, CA and now lives in San Francisco, CA with her boyfriend, Daniel after going to college in the Midwest. She grew up playing soccer, then rugby, then discovered Australian Rules Football after graduating from college in 2015. She made the national Australian Rules Football team in 2019 and was going to compete in Australia in 2020 in the International Cup, but then COVID shut the world down. The outdoors have always been a huge part of Caitlin’s life. Her parent’s first took her backpacking when she was 3 years old and did numerous trips in the Sierra Nevada’s that Caitlin eventually came to love (although at first, she thought her parents were torturing her and depriving her of a normal childhood). She discovered distance running in 2014 when she was training to hike across Spain but didn’t have the time to go on longer hikes so resorted to running. In 2016, she came to the realization that you can not only hike on trails, but you can also run on them! She ran her first trail marathon in 2017 and applied to Becoming Ultra at the end of 2021 right after she had foot surgery for a foot injury that had sidelined her from running for a year and a half. Since then, she’s re-fallen in love with trail running and has found amazing communities though Becoming Ultra and Trail Sisters. She’s run two 50Ks, an “ultra” Ragnar, and has her first 50-mile race in Oregon in early July.
Ever wonder where exposing your children to the great outdoors can lead? Caitlin grew up with parents who exposed her to lots of camping, hiking, and backpacking in amazing places. It is so fun to hear her talk about her adventures throughout her life, which includes a very special hike with her Dad. Caitlin shares her experience with training for her first ultra and the disappointment of dealing with an injury. We also discuss her first 50-mile race at Mt. Hood (that she crushed by the way). This is a fun, feel good episode. I will leave you with one of Caitlin’s favorite quotes that I cannot stop thinking about. “Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire”.