Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Author/Researcher Looking for Inspiring Trail Running Stories from Women

Dr. Alison Boudreau recently contacted me for a new book project, asking if I "knew any women with great trail running stories". Um, yeah...about a few thousand!!!

Below are some details about what she is looking for - be sure to contact her directly if you are interested.

Thx, SD

(from Ali)

My research re: women marathoners was just published in an academic journal, and I am now writing a book re: inspirational trail runner stories (details below). My book features international women trail runners (USA, South Africa, etc.), from half marathon to 100+ milers (first timers to experienced 100-milers), ranging from 18 to 70+ years old.

Thanks for your consideration, and happy trails :)



Has trail running changed your life? Have you perceived a positive impact on relationships or community? Has your courage or strength of mind inspired others? Did you preserve through fears, setback s or obstacles? Are you willing to explore and describe your experience to me? I am interested in how your personal and professional life has changed as a result of trail running.

The current popular literature focuses on the technical aspects of road marathoning. First-timers apply new training schedules and nutritional advice, as elite athletes gain speed and improve performance. Over time, road runners may grow weary of aches and pains caused by years of pounding on concrete. They may also view their slower times as a benefit to achieving longer distances on softer, more forgiving surfaces.

Inspirational stories are often shared by Runners’ World magazine. For instance, novice and elite athletes have done road races while fighting cancer, being blind or deaf, running with a prosthetic limb, or overcoming odds. However, who are the heroes and inspirational folks in our trail running community?

This book will capture the heart and soul of distance trail running. What does it feel like to run hours in nature, especially in the dark? Why do you run? What benefits do you get from trail running and not road running? For ultra runners, do you hit the wall like road marathoners? What is it like to depend on a crew or pacer? How do you mentally get through 50-100 miles?

Inspirational stories of long-distance trail runners will be collected, told in their own words. Descriptions may include experiences of their first trail race, most memorable training day or race, overcoming personal challenges, and life lessons learned. Runners will be young and old, first-timers and experts, fit and overweight, famous and everyday heroes achieving extraordinary feats.

This book has evolved from my academic research on female marathon runners, regarding their self-discovery and life-changing experiences with endurance exercise.

Does this sound like you or someone you know?

- Primarily a trail runner or ultra runner (who may occasionally run on roads);

- Believes trail running has had a positive impact on your job, home, or community;

- Finished two or more distance events (at least one 26.2 miles road marathon, and one 13.1 miles or further trail race);

- Can describe (in person or by phone) a specific example of how distance trail running changed your life (i.e., related to stress, decisions, relationships); and

- Can schedule one tape-recorded interview (1.5 hours or less), give feedback of draft story edits, and provide a brief bio and running photo.

If you answered “yes” to all of the above criteria, please respond to accept this invitation to participate by emailing the researcher (myself) at CoachAlison [at] .

Note: If you have a story already written, that's great! Otherwise, we can schedule an phone interview (1.5 hours or less) for taping. A transcription will be emailed to you for approval. The story will be keep entirely in your voice to fully capture your own personal experience.


  1. Tell her to look up Amy Palmiero-Winters. I believe its or something...

  2. I think Sarah Lavender Smith is a good person to interview! And she just completed her first 50-mile race at the Firetrails 50. You can also get a lot of juicy information from her blog.

    And really, this cannot be complete with an interview from the legendary Ann Trason herself. Or, if you can't get that, you can do some research on the amazing things she accomplished!

    So much can be gleaned from blogs from elite ultra runners like Devon Crosby Helms ( or Caitlin Smith (

  3. Hi Scott,

    I came across your site and really enjoyed what you've done with it. Curious if you accept advertising on your site. Please let me know if you might be interested.

    Feel free to email me at: tereschuksuzanne AT gmail DOT com.


  4. Hey Scott, how do you contact her directly about the book? I have some interesting stories from the past year of trail running. One is completing the Canadian Death Race in my first year running, and the 2nd is having to be taken to the hospital with frost-bite in the risk of losing all of my toes to frost bite from an 8 hour run in Northern Saskatchewan. Please give me contact info! Thank you.

    Benjamin Rempel

  5. Hey Scott, sorry, didn't notice she was just looking for female interviewees. Feel free to ignore my previous comment!


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