Tell everyone a little about who are you, what you do, and your connection to the trail and ultra running community:I am an father, husband, ultra runner, co-owner of Wy'east Wolfpack, which is a local-to-Portland, Oregon company that specializes in personal and group training, coaching, corporate wellness, and much more. We have weekly group runs, a women's group as part of the business called the Wy'east Sisterhood, and we are involved in many community events. I have been running ultra marathons at a pretty high and consistent level since 2007, and I am so grateful to have landed in such a rich and full trail running community here in the PNW.
Tell us what you like about Spring Energy products and why you choose their fuel for your races and adventures?
I really like the simplicity and philosophy behind Spring Energy and it is very much in alignment w/ my own dietary preferences. As an athlete that has thrived on a whole foods plant based diet since 2008, I firmly believe that you can reap the many rewards from the foods we eat. We don't need to ingest so many chemicals and man-made "nutrients" when nature provides all the necessary components. Also, as an entrepreneur and small business owner I am equally impressed when I see someone have a passion for something, and then pour their heart into making it their life's work. That is what I've done, and that is why I like to support companies like Territory RunCo and Spring Energy. Lastly, I always tell people that if I am sitting at home working on my computer and I feel the need for a little sweet snack, I reach over and put down a Spring Energy Gel no problem. For other synthetic gels w/ chemicals that I can't pronounce I am less likely to do that.
How do you typically plan out your fueling strategy before a big race? How does Spring Energy fit into that plan?
They say "variety is the spice of life" and I try to follow that rule during my big races as far as nutrition goes. I will mix different types of Spring Energy gels into my rotation with other whole foods as well. Depending on the race length, etc. I will save caffeinated gels for a little later on, and use different gels and ElectroRide during the heat of the day. Spring fits really nicely into that plan, provides great energy, and I have found that after 10-20 hours I am still able to get the gel down, where as in the past I would have gagged on other gels.
Your company, Wy'east Wolfpack is known for having wild aid station themes at races around the Northwest. As an aid station captain, what is the biggest mistake people make at aid stations during a race?
I think some of the biggest mistakes that people make are waiting too long to eat, and then trying to play "catch up". Also, a lot of times when athletes are eating too many of the refined sugars it can eventually result in GI distress. I have been a victim of this in the past as well and have learned the hard way! The nutrition component is such a tough nut to crack and can ruin your race. Not eating enough can result in low energy, sleepiness in really long races, and eating too much or the wrong combination can result in bloating and cramping. It's such a fine line to dance sometimes, and at our aid stations I have seen everything from vomiting to nausea and everything in between. The body can only process so much food during physical activity based on the blood shunting away from the stomach. Like I said, I think when runners feel they need to ingest all these calories based on their output, they end up overloading the stomach which can wreak havoc on the system. When you are racing at a higher intensity all of these factors are even more magnified.
Which is go-to spring energy flavor?
Without a doubt, Canaberry. The Mcraecovery is also high up on the list