Like a Bigfoot

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

Month: June 2017

Like a Bigfoot #47: Ryan Chukuske — Running and Writing About the Bigfoot 200

This week we welcome ultra endurance athlete and writer Ryan Chukuske to the podcast!

Ryan is in the middle of training for one of the premier endurance events in the country, the ultimate challenge, the Bigfoot 200.

Since starting this podcast I’ve been utterly fascinated with each conversation I’ve had about these insane ultra runs (see the episodes with Melissa Sinclair and race director Candice Burt).  Chatting with Ryan was no different.  A 200 mile race is so mindblowingly crazy and I love hearing about various training strategies, mental and emotional preparation, and the stories that led these athletes to stepping up to the plate of one of the biggest challenges the sport of ultrarunning has to offer.

In other words, I’m curious to find out if these 200 mile participants are simply out of their freaking minds!

Ryan has added another twist into his story: he’s an author who is planning on telling the story of this year’s Bigfoot 200 from his perspective along with the perspective of other runners, crew members, and Candice, the race director.  Pretty lofty goals that I’m excited to see play out!

You can check out his past books “100 Miles of Thought: Finding Success Through Failure” and his sequel “Into the Darkness: A Runner’s Revenge” on Amazon.

Throughout this episode we really hear how Ryan discovered ultrarunning.  He is also has a lot of experience running various races around the Midwest so we geek out about some lesser known events in Iowa and Minnesota (I’m looking at you Booneville Backroards Ultra south of Des Moines and Arrowhead 135 in International Falls on the Minnesota-Canada border)

His upcoming book is called “Bigfoot 200: Because, You Know, Why the #@&% Not?” and I will definitely keep you guys updated on Ryan’s race and when he plans on releasing the book.

Huge thanks to Ryan for sharing all his adventures, training strategies and ambitions with us and HUMONGOUS (trying to think of a word bigger than huge….writing blogs about authors is intimidating….) shout of “Best of Luck” to him during the race in August.  You rock!

More from Ryan Chukuske

Order “100 Miles of Thought”:

Order “Into the Darkness: A Runner’s Revenge”:

ABC News Article:

Past Interviews about 200 Mile Races:

Melissa Sinclair – How to Survive the Tahoe 200:

Candice Burt – Race Director of the Tahoe, Moab and Bigfoot 200:

More Like a Bigfoot:

Subscribe and Review on iTunes:

Soundcloud Archives:

Facebook Group:


Questions? Comments? Stories?

Let us know in the comment section!

Like a Bigfoot Podcast #46: Bill Sycalik — Running the Parks, National Parks Marathon Project

Photo by Nick Danielson

Taking the leap to chase a massive goal, uprooting your life and heading out into the wilderness, and running through the most beautiful places in the United States.  This week’s episode has it all!

About a year ago, Bill Sycalik quit his comfy job in New York City and hit the road, starting his quest to run a marathon in every National Park in the country.

Flash forward to now and he’s through number 47 and has adapted to his new nomadic life, exploring new places every single week.

In this episode Bill shares stories from his adventures through various National Parks, describes what it takes to step completely outside of your norm to follow your dreams, explains how he plans each and every marathon, and discusses his plans for the big events in his future (aka- the 8 REMOTE parks in ALASKA!!)

Hope you guys enjoy listening to Bill as much as I did.  Really a ridiculously inspiring dude who had a great since of humor and drive.

From his website:

One Nation

National Parks are our antidote to the seeming divisive country in which we live. In a National Park there is equality. The mountains, the trees, the animals set forth no judgment of man nor care about man’s judgment. On the grounds of a National Park everyone enjoys the same land, air and water; the same experience regardless of gender, orientation, age, education or economic background.

We are one Nation in a National Park.

Go plan a trip to one of our National Parks! You will find a peaceful respect for our natural places, step outside of your normal routine, and maybe, just maybe, reconnect with that inner Bigfoot!

More from Bill:

National Parks Marathon Project Website:

Facebook Page:


Sponsor Bill:–2

Support the National Parks Conservation Association:

Support Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine:

More Like a Bigfoot:

Subscribe and Review on iTunes:

Soundcloud Archives:

Facebook Group:


Questions? Comments? Stories?

Let us know in the comment section!

Like a Bigfoot Podcast #45: Susan Nowell 2 — How to Prevent and Manage Common Running Injuries

This week we are honored to welcome Susan Nowell back to the show!

Susan is an accomplished endurance athlete, a lifelong runner and adventurer, and a physical therapist in Northern California.  She is also my cousin and is someone whose fearlessness and discipline I’ve looked up to since I was a kid.

She is a wonderful resource for all of us athletes who are concerned about injury prevention and pain management.

In this episode we discuss the four most common running injuries.  How do you prevent them?  How do you rehab them?  We also talk about how she found success at the recent Carrara de Baja stage race and how she is going about training for an Ironman later this summer.

Hope you guys enjoy and hope you learn something!

More from Susan:

Stage race article she wrote for Trail Runner Magazine:

Last time she was on the podcast:

More Like a Bigfoot:

Subscribe and Review on iTunes:

Soundcloud Archives:

Facebook Group:


Questions? Comments? Stories?

Let us know in the comment section!


Like a Bigfoot Podcast #44: Andy & John Anderson — Iowans for Everest, Summiting North Side of Everest

A few weeks ago cousins Andy and John Anderson became the first Iowans to summit Everest from the North Side.  I was honored to chat with them only a few days removed from the top of the world.

On this week’s show they share their journey, the experience of summit day, their purpose and preparation.

How did they train for such an endeavor in the (relatively) flat state of Iowa?  How is the North Side experience different than summiting from the South?  Why forming a community and being clear on a purpose is so important in life?  What must your mindset be to handle the intensity of seeing a dead body on the mountain?  How will this experience influence their lives going forward?

The higher purpose of Iowans for Everest is to positively influence the lives of veterans by reintroducing them to the tight bonds of a community.  In this case, getting them involved in the climbing community and solidifying those bonds by taking them on hiking and climbing trips around the country.  If you feel the need to support them, please do so at

Frankly, I was just incredibly pumped because I’ve been geeking out over Everest stories for YEARS and these guys were the first people I’ve ever chatted with who had summited…..and their from one of the greatest places in the world!! Double bonus!

Hope you guys enjoy this week’s episode and that you are finding purpose in the pursuit of your own Everest- whatever that may be!

For more from Andy and John:

Donate to their veteran trips:

Facebook page:

Excellent news article:

For more Like a Bigfoot:

Subscribe and Review on iTunes:

Soundcloud Archives:

Facebook Group:


Questions? Comments? Stories?

Let us know in the comment section!

Like a Bigfoot #43: Adam Casey 2 — Managing Extreme Adversity, Tao of Pooh Discussion

This week we send out a huge welcome back to our friend Adam Casey.

In this episode Adam continues his story and explains the next period of his life as a U.S. Marine officer which leads into the absolute brutal day that unexpectedly knocked him onto a whole different path.

We also discuss why he reads the “Tao of Pooh” once every 6 months.  The book explains the essentials of Taoism using examples from Winnie the Pooh.  Based off of Adam’s suggestion I am currently in the middle of it and it is absolutely wonderful.

This conversation has brought up some really important questions in my life and I hope it helps you consider some of them too.

How can you use the concept of being the “Uncarved Block” to navigate your life?  How do you respond when life sends you the ultimate curveball?  What drives/motivates you and are you letting that completely define you?  How do you view obstacles- do they stop you or are they necessary at getting you to where you are today?

When you are at your absolute lowest moment, how do you find the strength to barrel forward?

Thanks guys for checking out the podcast! I’m gonna be in Canada for a week so I probably won’t be able to respond to any emails until I’m back.  Expect another podcast early next week though!

More From Adam:

His nonprofit:

Our first episode:

Ted Talk:

More Like a Bigfoot:

Subscribe and Review on iTunes:

Archives on Soundcloud:

Like a Bigfoot Podcast #42: A Guide to Climb Your First 14er — Scott Stark and Sean Furlong

Every single person, at least once in their life, should climb a mountain.

As we quickly approach mountain climbing season out here in Colorado, my inner mountain geek is beginning to get antsy.  To appease my own restlessness, I decided to put together a podcast that essentially could be the “intro to climbing a mountain.”  Specifically a 14er, the biggest mountains in Colorado (though the info could be applied to any mountain I suppose).

In essence, if you have never before stepped foot on a mountain, what are the basics that you absolutely should know in order to have a safe, fun experience?  If you think summiting a big peak is an absolute impossible task, you are wrong.  There are plenty of easier “beginner” peaks that, while still requiring hard work to get up, lack exposure (cliffs) and technical skills (using your hands and actually…climbing).

Though easier and less dangerous, there still are plenty of things you should understand going into these hikes as you are above treeline and still in remote wilderness.

So I brought in two guests.

First up is Scott Stark, last year at this time Scott had only summited one 14er.  In the midst of a crazy summer, he spent an insane amount of time above treeline and has now finished over 50 mountains (and 20 some 14ers) ranging from easy (Mt. Elbert) to some of the more difficult (Pyramid Peak).

Next is Sean Furlong.  Recently Sean has moved from Chicago where he jokingly claimed that he “didn’t step foot on grass for 8 years”.  In this podcast, he’s our “newbie”.  He’s excited to take on some big hikes and get up into the mountains this summer, and we put Mt of the Holy Cross on the schedule for July.

So we basically fill Sean in on some of the basic information he needs to know in order to have a fun and amazing BUT SAFE experience.

In this episode we cover “above treeline concerns”, good beginner mountains, what unexpected challenges may arise (aka crappy trailhead roads), how to train and prepare, and a bunch more.

NOTE: Take this for what it is…a guide.  Scott and I are nowhere near “experts” and are simply sharing our knowledge for what has worked (and not worked) for us in the past.  We, of course, are still in the pursuit of knowledge and experience when it comes to big time mountains.

NOTE 2: Also, I wanted to record outside because it was a super nice day….and I didn’t realize that the wind was hitting the mic every so often. It doesn’t screw up the audio too much but you will probably notice it every so often…you live and you learn!

Hope you guys enjoy and I really hope this episode inspires some of you to go out and conquer some mountains this summer!

More Info– the absolute hands down best information on 14ers out there.  This is a necessity for ALL the information you need about the peak you are planning on summiting.

“Colorado 14ers from Hikes to Climbs” by Gerry Roach – Maps, detailed info on routes, trailheads, etc.  Another piece of information that is a “must have”

More Like a Bigfoot

Subscribe and Review on iTunes:

Archives on Soundcloud:

Other Episodes about 14ers

Calvin Johannsen 14ers Project Part 1:

Calvin Johannsen 14ers Project Part 2:

Will Seeber Winter 14er Quest:

George Kittle Climbing 14ers with his Dad:

Scott Morris Mountain Biking up 14ers:

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