Tim VanOrden’s Running Raw Times – August 3rd, 2011 A big hello to all my friends and supporters of the Running Raw Project! In This Update:
- Only One Hill
- The Road to Italy
- The Woodstock Fruit Festival
- Southeastern U.S. Tour
- Audiobook ’em Danno
- The Race Report
- The Training Log
- Upcoming Schedule
Only One Hill:
Just before the start of the Mount Washington Road Race, the race director informs the anxious crowd that there is nothing to fear, “there is only one hill.” That lone ‘hill’ just happens to be the tallest mountain in the northeast and stands at 6,288 feet high. But nonetheless, it is just one hill. Put your head down, shift into low gear and get your grind on. As painful as it may be, you know what you are in for from start to finish. There are no surprises.
In life however, it’s not so simple. We are rarely presented with only one hill and one way to reach the top. Life shows up like a never ending mountain range that we must navigate in order to reach even the most basic goals. If you aspire to bigger things, you will be met with even bigger deterrents. The law of entropy mandates that we find ourselves in difficult situations.
Halfway through this year’s Mount Washington Road Race, I had an epiphany – We FIND ourselves in difficult situations… If we aren’t afraid to look within. Who you are and how you act when the going gets tough, is who you really are… at your core. If you lack purpose and direction, life’s trials and tribulations will seem random, unfair and never your fault. But if you get really quiet and take a good hard look, you will find something amazing – There IS only one hill… and that hill is YOU.
As the saying goes, “Rome wasn’t built in a day” and neither is a strong character. Contrary to what you might think, it is built in a single moment. It is built in a single step up the hill called ‘you’. The more steps you take up that hill, the closer you will be to your higher self.
So go find yourself in a difficult situation. Put your gaze inward, your head down and focus on the step right in front of you. Again and again and again. You’ll be at the top before you know it… and the view is spectacular!
If you want to know more about how to get to the top of YOU, check out my latest audiobook “Turbo Charge Your Life!”
The Road To Italy – The World Masters Mountain Running Championships:
On September 17th, in the beautiful mountain town of Paluzza, Italy, the best Masters mountain runners on the planet will be coming together to compete in the World Masters Mountain Running Championships. I hope to be among them. After winning the U.S. Masters Mountain Running Championships in June, my racing confidence is at an all time high. I’m in the best shape of my life and I’m ready to represent the United States, a plant based diet and Running Raw on the world stage.
This opportunity is going to require some serious fundraising. I released my latest audiobook “Turbo Charge Your Life!” a few days ago in hopes of raising some money for the trip. But I’m also going to need your help to pull this off. Ideas?
One possibility is to set up a few talks in the United Kingdom while I’m across ‘the pond’. It would be a great opportunity to spread the word about the power of a plant based diet and help cover some of the costs of the trip. If you know any London (or other U.K.) locations, groups, or organizers that might be willing to support my efforts, let me know as soon as possible, so that we can make this trip a reality… and make a difference.
The Woodstock Fruit Festival:
Got fruit? If not, you might want to come on over to the fabled town of Woodstock, NY and get your fruit on at the Woodstock Fruit Festival. Michael Arnstein (another successful raw athlete) and his wife Victoria had the idea to bring together fruit lovers from all over the world to celebrate, activate, and contemplate in an all you can eat fruit-filled week of bliss. I’ll be giving 3 talks during the week and leading runs every day. There are going to be a lot of other great speakers, events and great connections to be made. If you are free during the week of August 18th – 25th, come on down. We are going to have a blast!
Southeastern US Speaking Tour:
I’ll be driving down to North Carolina for the US 10k Trail Championships on August 25th and I’m booking talks in Atlanta, Charlotte, Asheville, Richmond, DC and Philadelphia for the return trip. The dates are August 25th – September 1st. If you would like me to speak to your group, or if you now a local contact who could help bring an event together in PA, VA, NC or GA contact me today – email@example.com
Audiobook ’em Danno:
While I was setting up my online store to carry my newest audiobook, “Turbo Charge Your Life!“, I stumbled across the download history of my first audiobook “Diet & Peak Performance“. My jaw dropped when I saw that my book had been downloaded over 5,000 times! I was at the same time filled with joy and despair. Joy that so many people were listening to my information and what that might mean for their lives, and despair that only 41 of them actually paid for the audiobook. Despite getting great positive feedback and numerous testimonials, I had thought the book was a flop.
Now a year later, I’ve put hundreds of additional hours into researching, testing and creating my latest work “Turbo Charge Your Life!”, hoping that it would have a bigger impact. One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned during this time is that we only place real, enduring value on the things that we’ve had to earn. I keep my prices low so that anyone can afford (earn) what I have to offer. You can’t pirate your way to a better life… at least not without stepping on someone else to get there.
Here is my upcoming schedule:
- August 6th – Mt. Ashland Hill Climb – Ashland, OR
- August 18th – 25th – Woodstock Fruit Festival – Woodstock, NY
- August 27th – U.S. 10k Trail Championships – Laurel Springs, NC
The Race Report:
• US 15K Trail Running Championships – Spokane, WA
The first of my efforts in 2011 to win another US Masters Championship hit pay dirt, as I cruised to my 4th US Masters title and finished 7th overall.
• New England Trail Running Championships – Northfield, MA
A field of athletes as tough and as deep as any US championship, duked it out on Northfield Mountain in Massachusetts to claim top New England honors. I kept my winning streak alive as I won the New England Masters Trail Running title.
• US Half Marathon Trail Running Championships – Bend, OR
I wasn’t sure if I was ready to excel in a half marathon yet, so I ran conservatively and found myself crossing the line in a very comfortable 5th place overall finish and won my 5th US Masters Championship.
• Mount Washington Road Race – Gorham, NH
The mother (in-law) of all mountain races. It strikes fear in all who attempt run it’s never-ending grade. In three previous attempts on this mountain, I have been laid to waste. This year, in the best shape of my life, I hoped to strike back. A grueling duel of body, mind and mountain ensued and I cleft six minutes off of my PR. Despite a significant improvement, I’ve come to the conclusion that I will never excel at this race. The uphill grind is not my strength and I accept that… But I’ll be back next year to try and prove myself wrong.
• US Mountain Running Championships – North Conway, NH
I’m a trail runner. Put me on ‘technical’ terrain and I excel. Put me on a long vertical grind and I’m decent at best. So you can imagine my surprise when I finished 15th overall and won my 6th US Masters Championship at the US Mountain Running Championships. It was my closest Masters victory yet, with Todd Callaghan of Beverly, MA pushing me the entire race. It wasn’t until the last quarter mile that I was able to open a small gap on him. The streak continues.
• Loon Mountain Race
When I first started the Running Raw Project in early 2006, my first goal was to make the US Mountain Running Team. The mountainous terrain that I was training on in California, combined with my mountain racing success there lead me to believe I was good enough to make the team. So I flew back to New England to compete in a US Team Qualifier at Loon Mountain. Two miles into the race I realized two things: 1) that I wasn’t even CLOSE to being good enough to make the team, and 2) REAL mountain runners live in New England and not California. Now five years later I was facing the monstrously steep slopes of Loon Mountain Ski Area yet again. This time in considerably better shape. The end result – a new PR and a even deeper respect for New England mountain goats, as my compadres handed me the whooping of a lifetime.
• Ascutney Mountain Challenge
The sixth and final race in the New England Mountain Running Series, is arguably the most difficult. An unrelenting paved road that climbs 2,300 vertical feet at a 13 to 18% grade over 3.6 miles tests the mental and physical limits of those willing to take on the challenge. Going in to the race I was in 2nd place overall in the series and on top of the Masters division, but only by a small margin. I needed a phenomenal race against some truly phenomenal athletes. In the end, I dueled to the line for 2nd place and came up short by only one second – good enough to seal my silver medal in the series and win my first New England Mountain Running Series Masters title.
• New England Mountain Racing Series
The toughest and most popular mountain running circuit in the US has come to its conclusion for 2011. Hundreds of amazing, talented and hard as nails northeasterners came out to test themselves on New England’s humble peaks. I completed all six races in the series, earning the title of “Mountain Goat” and took second overall in the final rankings, and first in the Masters. For those of you that live in the northeast, I highly recommend that you come out next year and meet some extraordinary people and challenge yourself like never before.
All results can be found HERE
The Training Log:
I must admit that it has been a real challenge to keep up the mileage and daily training. Three hours of training can dominate five to eight hours of the day. There is the period of time that it takes me to get out the door (never an easy process). The driving to and from trailheads. The time spent fueling pre and post workout. The naps. The tired, wasted, unproductive feeling after a long workout. The time it takes to motivate for workout number 2 or 3. Icing. Foam rolling. Then there is the training time itself. It’s become a nearly full time job, and it’s significantly lowered my level of productivity in other areas of my life. But I must strike while the iron is hot. Some things will need to be sacrificed so that I can see how far this rabbit hole goes. Hopefully, in the end, all the victories will have somehow made a difference, and changed the way that people think about diet, health and human performance.
Your Support: Your donations help more than you can imagine. Even very small contributions help to pay for event registrations, travel, etc. Thank you in advance for your support. Your generosity allows me to do what I do and hopefully touch lives in the process. You can make your donation through http://paypal.com to the address firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you’re excited about Running Raw and would like to be a part of the team, please get in touch. I’m always looking for new contributors, technical help, sponsorship and enthusiastic athletes to help make this project all it can be. Please pass this newsletter along to anyone that you think might be interested in this journey. If you have any suggestions on how to make runningraw.com better, please pass them along.
With love and gratitude