Like a Bigfoot

Motivation, Mindset, Positivity, Endurance, Adventure, Perseverance, and Possibility

Like a Bigfoot Podcast #227: Rue Mckenrick — American Perimeter Trail, Designing a 12,000 Mile Trail

Rue Mckenrick is a backpacker with a long list of accomplishments, “Triple Crowner, Long Trailer, JMTer”, and thousands upon thousands of miles hiked.

Inspired by all of these hikes, he is now stepping up to his biggest challenge, creating and hiking the approximately 12,000 mile American Perimeter Trail, a loop that will circumnavigate the continental United States.

In this episode we talk about what is inspiring him to endure the miles and years to achieve such a tremendous goal.  He also shares adventures and misadventures from his last 15 months of continuous backpacking and exploring, including how he hiked through the initial COVID lockdown with near complete isolation by combining social isolating skills with traditional backpacking skills.

I hope you guys enjoy listening to Rue’s tails and help contribute to his creation of the American Perimeter Trail (links on how to help below)!!! Keep exploring!

MORE FROM RUE AND THE AMERICAN PERIMETER TRAIL:

Website: https://americanperimetertrailproject.weebly.com

How to Support: https://americanperimetertrailproject.weebly.com/support-the-trail.html

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ruemckenrick/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/americanperimetertrailproject

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Like a Bigfoot #226: Taylor Ross — Fastest Known Time Running Across Iowa

The best way to truly embrace and experience a place on earth is to travel it by foot.  By slowly wandering through an area rather than speeding by you get to see it and appreciate it for what it is.

This week’s guest wanted to immerse himself into his home state of Iowa.  So he decided to run across it.

As someone who grew up in Des Moines who “avoided running a full mile until three years ago” Taylor Ross stepped up to the challenge, ran down country roads, past cornfields and mooing cows from one end of Iowa to the other.  Along the way he experienced community, extreme resilience in the face of pain, the natural beauty of the midwest, and the creativity of such a personal accomplishment.

In this episode we hear all about his FKT and what it takes to run for 4 days 15 hours and 32 minutes.  This story rocks!!

Was it Heaven? Maybe…I mean, it was Iowa.

Hope you guys enjoy the episode!! Huge congrats to Taylor for an INCREDIBLE accomplishment!! We are so inspired by you!

MORE FROM TAYLOR ROSS:

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/taylorrossartist/?hl=en

FKT: https://fastestknowntime.com/fkt/taylor-ross-run-across-iowa-ia-2020-10-23

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Like a Bigfoot Podcast #225: Angus Peacock 3 — “Conquering Leadership”, Finishing the 1 Million Step Challenge

This week we are welcoming Angus Peacock back to the show for a third time!

Angus is an executive coach and Director, a creative thought pioneer, and a performance specialist.  He’s also just a wonderfully introspective dude and one of my favorite people to feature on the podcast!

For years, in both the rugby world and the corporate world, Angus has had the opportunity to study notions of leadership (one of the topics I’m truly passionate about) Through his experiences he has seen a variety of viewpoints on leadership and has seen strategies both work and  struggle. He has observed the essential qualities of a good leadership and has become passionate about leading people in the most efficient way possible.

In this episode we chat about the traits we look for in successful leaders. Angus also catches us up on the final days of his One Million Step Challenge and we chat about how having a major project to work on motivates us and gifts us a purpose in our day to day.

This is an awesome episode that I cannot wait to share with you!!

I’ve really enjoyed chatting with Angus as he has the wonderful ability to shift my perspective and always leaves me with new thoughts and ideas to consider. I hope you have as many takeaways from this conversation as I did!

MORE FROM ANGUS PEACOCK:

Linkedin Blog: https://www.linkedin.com/in/coachangus

One Million Steps Fundraiser: https://step.diabetes.org.uk/pages/hannah-78

Black Dragon Podcasts “Conquering Leadership”: https://theblackdragon.podbean.com

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Like a Bigfoot Podcast #224: Arshay Cooper — “A Most Beautiful Thing”, The Power of Opportunity

Today I am honored to welcome rower, award winning author, motivational speaker and activist Arshay Cooper to the show!!

From his website: “Arshay grew up on the West Side of Chicago, witnessing family and friends become products of their environment. But a chance encounter changed Arshay’s life. In 1997, he joined (and later became captain of) the first African-American high school rowing team at Manley High School, an experience that changed Arshay life.”

His memoir of this experience, “A Most Beautiful Thing”, is an absolute gem of a book- highlighting his experience joining the crew team, discovering a purpose, forming a brotherhood, and finding peace and safety on the water. It really encapsulates the power of sport can have in a young person’s life.  His story has received major praise and highlights the need for opportunities in impoverished areas.

“A Most Beautiful Thing” is now a documentary film from award winning director Mary Mazzio, narrated by Common produced by Dwayne Wade, Grant Hill and 9th Wonder. The film tells the story of the team’s intro to rowing and then reunites them as grown men to compete again. It is ABSOLUTELY fantastic and will bring you to tears.

I was completely honored and inspired by Arshay (especially because he’s been doing nonstop interviews for the past five months) and cannot wait for you to listen to our conversation.  I highly recommend both his book and his movie and respect Arshay spreading his positive message of love, inclusion, community and the power of opportunities!

Along with watching the film, please support and donate to the George Pocock Rowing Foundation to promote opportunities in the sport of rowing to more diverse and underserved communities – https://www.pocockfoundation.org/copy-of-a-most-beautiful-thing

MORE FROM ARSHAY COOPER AND “A MOST BEAUTIFUL THING”

Website: https://www.arshaycooper.com

Movie: https://www.amostbeautifulthing.com

Book: https://www.amazon.com/Most-Beautiful-Thing-Americas-All-Black/dp/1250754763

Donate to George Pocock Rowing Foundation: https://www.pocockfoundation.org/copy-of-a-most-beautiful-thing

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Like a Bigfoot Podcast #223: Lindsey Weaver — C and O Canal FKT, Withstanding 184.5 Miles to D.C.

This week we are chatting with ultrarunner, school librarian, and awesome all around person Lindsey Weaver!!

Lindsey just completed her quest to set the Fastest Known Time on the C & O canal, a 184.5 mile trail along the Potomac river from Cumberland, Maryland to Washington D.C.  With summer races cancelled, she wanted to put all her training to good use and stepped far outside of her comfort zone and took this challenge head on!  What she found along the way was an unwillingness to quit, a determination to keep battling, and the beautiful encouragement of her running community.

I was absolutely inspired by the story of this FKT and really admire Lindsey’s refusal to let negative emotions dictate her resolve when things got difficult (Like….any step over 100 miles kind of difficult).  To me, this adventure represents the spirit of ultra running during this wild and exhausting COVID summer we have all been asked to endure- running and pushing limits as a form of stress management, self discovery, and community building amongst a time where individuals have been forced into relative isolation.  At the end of the day it really is our contribution to our community and our community’s contribution to use, in the form of positive uplift, that will really help us through the bumpy parts of life and out the other side.

Hope you all enjoy the episode!! Huge thanks to Lindsey and best of luck in whatever she sets her mind to next!!

MORE FROM LINDSEY WEAVER:

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thefitbrarian/?hl=en

Frederick Article: https://www.fredericknewspost.com/news/education/schools/public_k-12/high_school/middletown/middletown-high-librarian-becomes-first-woman-to-run-length-of-c-o-canal/article_0b26909d-f3a6-5da8-84a9-d1f213387fd4.html

Canada Trail Running Magazine: https://runningmagazine.ca/trail-running/american-ultrarunner-sets-300k-fkt-from-northwestern-maryland-to-d-c/

NBC Sports: https://www.nbcsports.com/washington/maryland-ultrarunner-completes-record-breaking-189-mile-trek-down-co-canal-towpath

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Like a Bigfoot Podcast #222: Paul Schurke — Retracing the Expeditions of Peary, Shackleton and Roosevelt

https://soundcloud.com/chris-ward-126531464/222-paul-schurke/s-tNFm5JWVWOc
This week’s episode is with adventurer, polar explorer, environmentalist, Minnesotan, and wonderfully nice guy Paul Schurke!!
Paul is a legend in the adventure world- completing multiple expeditions to the North Pole (including an unsupported trip in the 80s), dogsledding across Siberia (to convince the US and Soviet Union to open the Bering Strait to help out Inuit families), following in the footsteps of Teddy Roosevelt’s River of Doubt expedition in the Amazon, crossing South Georgia Island by the same route as Ernest Shackleton, and so much more.
He now lives on and is a huge proponent for the protection of the Boundary Waters in northern Minnesota (one of my favorite places on the planet), helped establish the Wilderness Inquiry (a program which has the mission of outdoor adventures from all walks of life)  and spends his time running the Wintergreen Dogsled Lodge in Ely, Minnesota.
In what became one of my favorite episodes yet, you will hear all about a lifetime of adventure with a wonderful storyteller!! Can’t wait to share this one with you all!!
Big thanks to my dad for telling me that I have to reach out to Paul after reading “Northland” by Porter Fox.  The lesson is…always listen to your dad!
More from Paul Schurke:
Wintergreen Northern Wear: https://www.wintergreennorthernwear.com

Like a Bigfoot Podcast #221: Phil Pinti & Brady Manriquez — “Making the Most of it!!”

“For so long…you’re not at the top…”- Brady Manriquez after climbing his first 14er (Please someone make this a 14er shirt!!)

Brady Manriquez and Phil Pinti join the show to chat all things 50 milers, Virtual Races and climbing 14ers!!!

Phil ran a 50 miler through my favorite area in Virginia and is preparing to tackle the virtual Marine Corps 50k.  Brady came out to Colorado and had a great week of trail running, exploring and he was able to summit his very first 14er.  In this episode they both share adventures, stories, and laughs from these events.  Hope you guys enjoy!

Super fun conversations with these two dudes!!

MORE FROM PHIL PINTI:

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/macho_man_runneth/

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Like a Bigfoot Podcast #220: Alyssa Clark — Running 95 Marathons in 95 Days

This week I am very excited to welcome the fantastic runner Alyssa Clark to the podcast!

Alyssa has one of the most outstanding stories I’ve heard in a long time.  Once Covid locked her down in Italy, she decided that she was going to run a marathon every day for a few weeks.  Well…..being an ultrarunner (which gives you that extra dash of lunacy) a few weeks became a month which became two months which became the consistent routine of a marathon every morning before she found herself in the 70s, 80s and 90s.  She completely shattered the previous “Consecutive Marathon” World Record and more amazingly, did so while in the middle of a move back to the United States!

On top of all that, Alyssa is just a super knowledgeable runner and an awesome person to chat with! Recently she has cohosted a bunch of wonderful episodes for Rob Steger’s “Training For Ultra” Podcasts and began a website called Training4Adventure which shares all sorts of inspiring adventure stories.

Can’t wait for you guys to listen to this episode!

Also Rob is acting as our special cohost to intro Alyssa at the beginning of the show and chat filmmaking and his “Triple Crown of 200s” doc in the outro so I hope you all enjoy those segments as well!

MORE FROM ALYSSA CLARK:

Training4Adventure: https://www.training4adventure.com/home-1

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/theory_in_motion/

Training for Ultra Podcast: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-training-for-ultra-podcast/id1265633252

Trail Runner Magazine Article: https://trailrunnermag.com/people/for-95-straight-days-alyssa-clark-ran-a-marathon-setting-a-new-record.html

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Like a Bigfoot Podcast #219: Bill Maxwell — Guiding Collegiate Athletes to Success

This week we are welcoming director of Olympic strength and conditioning at the University of Iowa, Bill Maxwell.

Bill is in charge of all programs at Iowa except Football and is specifically responsible for Men’s Basketball and Women and Men’s Golf.  He is a super experienced strength and conditioning coach with a wealth of knowledge.

These coaches have obviously have to be great at getting their athletes in the best physical shape possible so they must have a wealth of knowledge in physiology and how the body responds to specific workouts, but they also have to understand the best practices in motivating individuals to give it their all throughout their training.

In this episode we focus more on the leadership qualities one must possess to run a successful program.  How do you inspire a group of people with such diverse backgrounds, abilities, and intrinsic motivations in order for the team to be a success?  How do you get people to bond together in a positive way in the formation of a team?  What are various strategies that help push athletes to give it their all every single time they are asked to perform?

I’m super excited to share this episode with you guys!! We recorded about a month and a half ago through a mutual friend Cameron Dorn (who’s AWESOME) and I was really excited to geek out about leadership, Hawkeye Basketball, and athlete performance.

Hope you guys enjoy!! Huge thanks to Bill for sharing his time and knowledge!

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Like a Bigfoot Podcast #218: Booneville Backroads Ultra — The Final Chapter

We finally did it.  We went out and ran the Booneville Backroads Ultra. I-O-W-A! IOWA! IOWA!

It was a LOOOOOOOOONG time coming (months and months and numerous podcasts later), but we did the thing!

Today Thad Burkamper joins me on the show to tell the tale of his first attempt at a 50k while I explain the story of my very first 100K (62 Miles).

As in any good Ultra, there were super high highs and devastatingly low lows. The race itself though was AWESOME- the Iowa countryside is gorgeous, the course was diverse and kept you on your toes, the volunteers and other racers were wonderful, Brad Dains was an outstanding race director and it just felt good to be competing again!

But that heat……oh…..the heat.  That was rough.  That was when the race really kicked you in the face, brought you to your knees (quite literally in some cases) forcing you to dig deep into the ole grit basket deep inside our souls.

Huge thanks to everyone who helped me out at Booneville – The race volunteers, anyone and everyone who raced Booneville and battled that ridiculous heat, Jen Tischler for sharing a bunch of miles down those never-ending gravel roads, race director extraordinaire Brad Dains, “Calspirations” Calvin Johannsen, the legendary Carol Ward- my lovely mother, the lady who let us camp in her front yard, Thad’s Jurassic Park Jeep, my wife Lindsey Ward for spending two days watching our three bonkers daughters, Sean Furlong, Travis Steffen, and Matt Rackers for making the months of training super fun (missed you guys!) and the “Muscatine Backroads Ultra 50k” Champion Brady Manriquez for hosting the show!!

I sincerely hope you enjoy today’s episode, get some good laughs at our expense, and maybe even learn a thing or two (if Thad and I shared anything resembling wisdom).  Thanks for listening!!

MORE FROM BOONEVILLE BACKROADS ULTRA:

Website: http://boonevillebackroadsultra.com

Ultrasignup: https://ultrasignup.com/register.aspx?did=72917

“Reach for the Stars” Documentary: https://www.expandyourpossible.com/online-store/Reach-for-the-Stars-The-Booneville-Backroads-Ultra-Marathon-Digital-%26-Streaming-p139527512

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