Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A Fun and Hilly Oakland Marathon

On Sunday, I had the great pleasure of joining 12,000 runners for the inaugural Oakland Running Festival in Oakland, CA. We had perfect weather for a marathon, 1/2 marathon, or 5k fun run, and a challenging course that took us through many diverse and beautiful areas of Oakland. Judging by the number of smiles that filled the downtown courtyards at the finish, the race was a huge hit and destined to return for many years to come. 

This race wasn't on my calendar originally, but "long hilly run of 28 miles" was. When I saw that the Oakland Marathon course went through the hills of Rockridge and Montclair, as well as tour through a bunch of Oakland I had never seen, I just had to go! Plus there's Fairyland for Sophie, so it can't be beat. So I figured I would hit the hills hard (1st half), then either coast the second half or keep going hard if my legs gave me permission. Plus I was thrilled to show my support for the City of Oakland, who clearly put a lot of thought and work into this race.

I arrived early on Sunday morning to ample parking, and a cozy slightly-overcast sky. About 1,000 runners were doing the marathon (solo or team relay), and we got to go an hour ahead of the 10,000 half marathoners. I saw a lot of familiar faces in the crowd, no surprise. It appears the organizers had tapped the ultrarunning community to run the pace groups, and Mark Tanaka, Mark Gilligan, my friend Phil Grant, and other sign-toting runners were ready to try and keep an even pace on this hilly course. Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums gave me some pointers - he used to be an avid runner, but "now that he's 70 he just sticks to martial arts". How cool is that?   

 (Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums gives me some last minute pointers)

(Lining up at the start)

In a classic Dunlap move, I lined up at the front and took off with the leaders, only to realize 100 yards into the race that my shoe was untied. Nice! I made a quick stop, then paced along with Ed Vasquez (back from a few injuries in 2009) and Marathon Maniac Rudy Montoya (fresh off the hilly Atlanta Marathon) as we watched Ivan Medina, Tony Torres, and Thomas Weiler pull away from us in the distance. The Women's front runner Michelle Meyer was right with us, clocking 6:30 min/miles, with a few other fast Women keeping her in sight. As we tackled some short hills and hit Telegraph Ave (mile 2.5), we were spread out pretty good. 
 (The marathon relay teams stuck close, watching for the breakaway)

(Alexander Sebastian sets a solid pace in the first mile)

I picked up the pace to pull up into 8th place, right behind a runner named Billy. He knew the area pretty well, and we both laughed about how fun it is to run right down the middle of the street in areas you usually can't find parking. The neighbors were all out to cheer, complete with bells, bongos, and noise-makers.

We did an out-and-back on College Ave, past Zachary's Pizza (arguably the best in the Bay), before charging up into the hills. Ivan Medina and Tony Torres were so far in front we didn't really see them, and my guess is that they were going sub-2:30 marathon pace. Wow! 

(Rudy reaches out for the high five while cruising down College Ave)

(Eventual Women's winner Michelle Meyer pulls away from her competition at mile 4, although her name was pulled from the results)

I thought I would slow down through the hills, but after a fire engine passed within 10 feet of me on a stretch of road with no sidewalk, I had more than enough adrenaline to charge fast. 

(On your left!)

The hills were pretty tough, particularly once we turned past Lake Temascal onto some bike path and into the Montclair area. Heartbreak Hill has nothing on Fernwood Road, that's for sure. But the houses were gorgeous, and the neighbors were all really friendly and encouraging. I had never seen so many cameras or designer dogs in a single five mile stretch! Just when your legs were ready to give out, there was a nice section of downhill to get your stride back, so you could keep a pretty good pace. 

(Self portait just past Lake Temascal...and no, I did NOT turn up the vibrance on this photo - it's that pretty!)

(Montclair residents welcoming runners to their neighborhood)

I knew I was trucking along, but wasn't really watching the time until I got to the Mormon Temple (mile 10). Sixty-two minutes?!? Good Lord, Scott, what are you doing? Perhaps I should stop and give a quick prayer for my glutes which will certainly be screaming by mile 20. 

(Every town had great support)


(Oakland Temple means "all downhill from here")

The descent was steep, almost too steep not to brake, and I got a chance to look for the runners in front and behind me in the long straightaways. Nada y nada...I was running solo in 5th place. Hey, where are my 1,000 running buddies? No worries, there were so many nice people on the course I barely noticed. In fact, most of them were shouting out "thank you for running Oakland!". Are you kidding? Thanks for having the race!

(Cruising through town, photo courtesy of talented 9-year-old Daniela Sebastian)

As the course routed through Fruitvale, I really got the sense of how diverse the population of Oakland is. The streets had cheering neighbors from every nationality you can imagine, and the smells of BBQ, Farmers Markets, and deep-fried goodness were around every corner. The music along the course, both live and boom box-powered, had folk, hip-hop, Japanese, big kettle drums, Pink Floyd-inspired rock, country, and more. It was really cool.

(The Oakland Police were amazing the whole race)

At one point along 8th Ave (mile 16), a homeless guy came out on the course and started flagging me down. Was this guy going to stop me, a la Vanderlei de Lima at the 2004 Athens Olympics? Or was it going to be an awesome picture possibility? I didn't have to find out, since two of the Oakland Police force quickly sped by on their motorcycles and cleared the way. One cop pulled up next to me and said, "sorry about that...we'll ride with you up to Jack London" and gave me an escort for the next mile. It wasn't needed, but I felt like such a rock star.Make way for the dude in 5th! ;-)

Jack London Square (mile 18) was another cool area I hadn't seen, and after cruising by I found myself getting passed by the 1/2 marathon front runners. They ran so smoothly! And my legs were headed in the other direction. But I found myself subconsciously (and foolishly) trying to keep pace. Perhaps genetically, we are pack runners.

(Lots of colorful characters, and the first signs of a smudge on my lens that would ruin most of my photos from here on out...oops)

(The wild gorillas of Oakland - the smudge doesn't do these guys justice, since their costumes were awesome)

At mile 20, the famous psychological wall, my legs started to bargain with me. If you want to continue training hard to run fast at Boston, ease up now or PAY THE CONSEQUENCES. Hmmm, not much of a bargain! I looked at my watch - 2:08, still ridiculously fast for a training run - so I eased up a bit to enjoy the sites of Fairyland, Lake Merritt, and the final stretch near downtown. Before I knew it, I crossed the finish line in 2:49:30, holding on to 5th place overall (results). Comedian/Actor Mark Curry and the Oakland Raider cheerleaders were there to congratulate me! Apparently I was "in the money" by finishing top 5, good for $100. Mark and I were quick to quote Chevy Chase in Caddyshack, "I feel like $100.".

(Comedian Mark Curry says congrats, photo courtesy of talented 9-year-old Daniela Sebastian)

(Comedian Mark Curry greets me at the finish...sorry about the smudge, Mark!)

I asked about the winning time, and sure enough, 40-year-old Tony Torres had crushed it in 2:31:38. That is crazy fast for a hilly course! The next five runners each came in 4-5 minutes apart, and 11 made it under 3 hours. I congratulated Michelle Meyers on winning the Women's division in 2:59, although her name was pulled from the results a day later (and then added back - what up?), with Aracelly Clouse (3:06) from Cameron Park, CA, coming in second. I'm sure there's a story there.

I got some food, a massage, met some new friends, and went through all my beer coupons before 11am rolled around. One great thing about finishing early - no lines! I changed my clothes and then came back to watch the courtyard fill up with music, laughter, and tales of adventure. Those who knew me said my fitness is officially out of control, and Mark Gilligan said he was going to start the dunlapisonsteroids.com Web site. Ha! No, just lots of good quality training combined with a lucky streak of health. I'll put it to the test at Boston and see if there is one more gear.

(Party at the courtyard!)

(Ed Vasquez enjoys a moment with his fiancee)

(The Relay runners definitely had the most fun during and after the race - try one next year!)

Everything was so right about this race - fun and eager volunteers, local cheering squads, awesome pacers, impeccable work by the Oakland Police, great shwag and medals, and two beers per runner at the end. Nice work for an inaugural event! My thanks to the everyone for putting it together, and starting what is surely to be an annual event for years to come.

Cheers, SD

Thursday, March 25, 2010

XTerra Launches The XTerra Planet Magazine

TEAM Unlimited, the owners and producers of XTERRA, today launched "The XTERRA Planet" - a quarterly magazine dedicated to the people, places and races of XTERRA.It's really well done, and I'm not just saying that because I'm featured in it as "one of the most successful trail running bloggers of our time". Doh! Look out Dean Machine, the Dunlap marketing engine is revving up!

Honestly though, they did a good job of writing up an article with blogging and photo tips and some of my favorite pics from the last couple of years. You can see it in the free preview at www.xterraplanet.com/magazine (although it's a bit hard to read when you zoom). And the layout and photos of XTERRA are gorgeous!

Some info from their press release:

The name for the publication is a spoof on the fictitious “Daily Planet,” the Metropolis newspaper that employed Clark Kent (aka Superman). And, just like that periodical, The XTERRA Planet will cover the exploits of superheroes in our community.

“We’ve been building this magnificent collection of story ideas and images since our first race back in 1996, and now with this magazine we’ll be able to showcase the amazing people and incredible photography we’ve gathered along the way,” said Trey Garman, the magazine’s editor and vice president of XTERRA.

“The fact is we have created a very tight knit community who genuinely care about each other and I think our Tribe is really going to enjoy seeing the pictures and reading the stories about each other’s adventures,” said Dave Nicholas, the managing director of XTERRA who pens the “Kahuna’s Korner” column.

The late Steve Larsen graces the cover of the inaugural issue, a tribute to a man who made great contributions to XTERRA through the years.

“It was just 10 months ago when many of us were gathered around Steve at the pool at Loews Lake Las Vegas Resort after the XTERRA West Cup and talking about the good times we’ve had together,” said Janet Clark, the publisher and president of XTERRA.

“With this first issue we wanted to seize the opportunity to remember Steve and help spread the word about a few initiatives that are taking place on his behalf. In particular, community leaders in Davis, California are building a bike plaza in Steve’s honor and we hope those in our community that have the means to help will do so, as it’s a deserving project that will perpetuate the legacy of a great friend.”

Other features include dramatic photo spreads, a “Tracking the Tribe” piece on Jamie Whitmore’s “Miracle Twins” and other new additions to the XTERRA family, a destination feature on Henderson, Nevada where the XTERRA West Championship will be held, fun Q and A’s with the sports biggest stars, updates from races around the world dubbed “Podium Notes”, a “whatever happened to” feature focused on 2001 XTERRA World Champ Anke Erlank, and a story on one of the most successful trail run bloggers of our time.

To see a free preview of the magazine and to purchase a hard copy, visit www.xterraplanet.com/magazine.
This first issue is on sale for just $5 through March 21, and $6 thereafter (plus shipping). Comments to the Editor, Trey Garman, should be addressed to trey@xterraplanet.com.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Fun Trail Running Video

Brian Lucido, a friend of Way Too Cool 50k winner Leor Pantilat and 4th place finisher Gary Gellin, shot this great video after joining his two pals for one of his first journeys into the world of ultras. A very cool tour through Boggs Mountain State Forest.  Thanks Gary and Leor for the tip...

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Dean Karnazes ElliptiGO's to the LA Marathon

Dean's latest favorite toy - the ElliptiGO - is the basis for his attempt at the record books for "most distance covered on an elliptical bike in 5 days". He will be ellipting (?) his way down the coast from San Francisco to Los Angeles, a distance of over 500 miles. You can follow him here.

I first saw the ElliptiGO at the Death Ride last year. Pretty cool that you can get the athletic benefit of an elliptical trainer while enjoying the outdoors. Here are some pics, courtesy of Eric C Gould:

Monday, March 15, 2010

Past winners Leor Pantilat and Joell Vaught repeat at 2010 Way Too Cool

Leor Pantilat won for the 2nd year in a row (3:41:47), aided by a wrong turn by leader Geoff Roes (who still finished third in 3:51:51), and out-kicking Max King (2nd, 3:47:39). Joelle Vaught, who won in 2006, ran alone in first most of the race to win (4:13:53) after key rival Kami Semick dropped from stomach issues and flu-like symptoms. Bev Anderson-Abbs came in 2nd female/1st masters (4:29:40), a very strong performance just a few weeks after running a 50-miler, and Darcy Africa was 3rd  (4:37:12).

It's definitely worth reading the SacBee story and Leor's account to get a full picture of this great race in the mud. Or you can read the account from the man-sized banana at the Hwy 49 crossing. Congrats everyone!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Ultrarunner Topher Gaylord Takes the Helm At Mountain Hardwear

Many of us know 41-year-old Topher Gaylord as a seasoned ultrarunner, with finishes at UTMB, Western States, Top 10 at the Miwok 100k, 4th at the TNF Challenge 50-mile, and many others to his credit. A few of us may also know him from crewing for his speedy wife, Kim, or as the guy in the Race for the Soul movie who blew up and came back from the dead for a sub-24 hour finish. But did you also know he’s the President of Mountain Hardwear? Yup, as of this week.

Free shwag for everyone! (ha, ha)

Columbia Sportswear Company Announces Appointment of Topher Gaylord as President of Its Mountain Hardwear Subsidiary

20-year Outdoor Industry Veteran Brings Rich Global Brand-Building and Operational Experience

PORTLAND, Ore., March 1, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Columbia Sportswear Company (Nasdaq:COLM), a global leader in active outdoor apparel, footwear, accessories and equipment, announced today the appointment of Topher Gaylord as president of its wholly owned subsidiary Mountain Hardwear, Inc. As president of Mountain Hardwear, Inc., Gaylord will be responsible for product creation, global sales and marketing of Mountain Hardwear-brand apparel, accessories & equipment, and for global sales and marketing of Montrail-brand trail-running footwear. He will report to Mick McCormick, Columbia Sportswear's executive vice president of global sales and marketing and will relocate to Mountain Hardwear's Richmond, California headquarters, replacing Kirk Richardson who has served as interim president since November 2009.

Gaylord, 40, brings 20 years of executive experience and personal passion in the outdoor industry. He joined The North Face in 1993, rising to serve as managing director of the company's EMEA region from 2000 to 2005 and as president of VF Corporation's Outdoor & Action Sports International brands, including The North Face, Vans, Reef and Jansport, from 2006 through September 2008. Gaylord has served as president of 7 For All Mankind within VF's Contemporary Brands coalition since October 2008.
"Topher is one of those rare individuals who knows what it takes to build performance-based global brands," said Tim Boyle, president and CEO of Columbia Sportswear. "We believe our Mountain Hardwear and Montrail brands, with combined 2009 sales of approximately $110 million, will benefit greatly from Topher's leadership, knowledge, and global experience."

Over the course of his career, Gaylord has been responsible for all aspects of brand positioning and management, product design, merchandising and development, marketing, sales, establishment of multiple go-to-market business models around the world, including wholesale, direct-to-consumer, distributor, and licensing, as well as the successful integration of numerous acquired brands. He has extensive experience working in multi-cultural environments in Europe, Asia and North America, building strong business relationships that have resulted in sustained, profitable growth.

"I am energized by the opportunity to lead Mountain Hardwear," said Gaylord.   "As a dedicated ultra runner and outdoor athlete, I have always admired Mountain Hardwear and Montrail products and appreciate the authenticity and integrity with which each brand has pursued its passion to serve the high-performance needs of outdoor athletes and consumers. I believe both brands offer rich possibilities for growth as we capitalize on their global potential."

Interim president Kirk Richardson will assist with Gaylord's integration and then return to Portland, Oregon to resume his prior position as Columbia Sportswear's general manager of footwear merchandising. "We are indebted to Kirk for serving as interim president at Mountain Hardwear and look forward to welcoming him back to Columbia," said Boyle.

About Columbia Sportswear Company
Columbia Sportswear Company is a global leader in the design, sourcing, marketing and distribution of active outdoor apparel, footwear, accessories and equipment. Founded in 1938 in Portland, Oregon, Columbia products are sold in more than 100 countries and have earned an international reputation for innovation, quality and performance. Columbia products feature innovative technologies and designs that protect outdoor enthusiasts from the elements, increase comfort, and make outdoor activities more enjoyable. In addition to the Columbia brand, Columbia Sportswear Company also owns outdoor brands Mountain Hardwear®, Sorel®, Montrail®, and Pacific Trail®. To learn more, please visit the company's websites at www.columbia.com, www.mountainhardwear.com, www.sorel.com, and www.montrail.com

About Mountain Hardwear:
Mountain Hardwear, Inc. makes cutting edge mountaineering and outdoor equipment, apparel and accessories for ultimate performance in extreme conditions. Established in 1993 by a group of outdoor industry veterans, Mountain Hardwear is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Columbia Sportswear Company based in Richmond, Calif. Mountain Hardwear distributes its products through specialty outdoor and sporting goods retailers throughout the United States and over 40 countries worldwide. Mountain Hardwear has won numerous product and customer service awards since its inception, reflecting the company's commitment and passion toward innovation. It's our relentless drive to create the absolute best that makes us who we are. Mountain Hardwear. PERFORMANCE ELEVATED™. www.mountainhardwear.com

Monday, March 08, 2010

The Caumsett 50k USATF 50k Road Championships - A Good Day for a PR


Yesterday I had the great pleasure of joining 200 runners for the Caumsett State Park 50k in Lloyd Harbor, NY, put on by New York Ultra Running. As the USATF 50k Road Championships, lots of speed demons were out to enjoy one of the first sunny days to come after a long, hard northeast winter. What better way than a 10 lap loop course with fellow ultra warriors?

As I warmed up with Team Inov-8 runner Ben Nephew, we agreed that the day had a lot the right ingredients for a breakthrough PR. Although the temp was in the high 30's, the sun would warm up the day to ideal low 50's by the halfway point. Short of some wind gusts, this was MUCH better than snow/sleet/sub-zero Caumsett 50k's of the past. Plus there were a lot of great runners here - 2x defending champ and course record holder (2:56) Michael Wardian, Scott Jaime (pronounced Hi-Me) from Colorado, 50k Masters American Record holder Dan Verrington, 24-hour American Record holder Mark Godale, 24-hour National Team member Phil McCarthy, Montrail runners Annette Bednosky and Jill Perry, the great Scott Jurek, and a half dozen more that could go sub-3:30 on a good day. I felt like a kid meeting my favorite rock stars!
(Ben Nephew and I sport the new Team Inov-8 shirts)

(Staying warm at the start)

My personal goal for the day was to improve on my 50k PR (3:37 at the 2009 Ruth Anderson 50k). My speed work was going INSANELY well over the last three months, particularly by teaching me that I could be in a lot of pain and still hold my form. To achieve a PR, like any stretch goal, you need three things. First, you need to show up (check). I know that sounds simple, but as we all know, getting the start line healthy and ready can be tough. Second, you need the opportunity, like a day of perfect weather and runners faster than you (check). Third, you need to believe that it is possible to achieve something beyond your best (check, thank you speedwork). Let's DO THIS!

At 8:30am, Suffolk County Legislator Jon Cooper sent off the 50k runners (30 minutes ahead of the 25k runners) and the front pack quickly spread out. Wardian, Jesse Regnier (in his first race beyond 8 miles), and 2:19 marathoner Malcolm Campbell went out hard, running 5:30 min/miles. Scott Jaime and Malcolm Campbell each ran solo at a sub-6 pace a few steps back, and Dan Verrington, Ben Nephew, Mark Godale and I clocked 6 min./miles in the next chase pack. Dan was doing most of the work in our pack, letting us know right up front that he was shooting for "3 and low teens since the 45-49 50k American Record is soft at 3:17". I guess he would know - it's his record! We finished the first lap in 18 minutes. My God, this was fast.

(Mark Godale, Ben Nephew, and Dan Verrington chasing Scott Jaime)

 (Michael Wardian and Jesse Raginer finish up lap #1)

We got sight of the Womens race on the out and back section, and front runners Annette Bednosky, Jill Perry, and Yolanda Flamino were sticking close to each other. Last years champ and course record holder, Kami Semick, was not present today so it was anyone's race. They were all keeping each other in sight.

(Jill Perry leads Annette Bednosky and Yolanda Flamino)

Ben Nephew was nice enough to help pace the pack with Dan, but around lap 3 (mile 9) Dan picked up the pace charging the uphill grades and dropped us. Mark Godale fell off the pace, and Ben and I speculated that he probably wasn't in peak shape thanks to daughter #3 recently arriving. We both had 3-year-olds and knew how that could crimp a training plan, but #3? Fuggetaboutit.

(Scott Jaime gives a thumbs up)

On each subsequent lap, we molted layers of hats, gloves, sleeves, wool, etc. until we were down to our tank tops in the 45-degree air. Ben continued to do the lion's share of the pacing, running with a short and powerful stride from all his snowshoeing. I was nursing a sore shoulder from a sex-related injury (best if I don't provide detail on that one, but let me recommend that you stretch out before ANY strenuous exercise), but otherwise feeling strong. The aid station volunteers at both stops were amazing, and we barely had to slow for whatever we needed.

On lap 6 (mile 18), my body demanded a bio break and I made a absurdly efficient 20-second stop at the port-a-potty. Ben wished me well, and from that point on he would be little more than a dot on the horizon. That was okay though - I knew the last third was going to be a three-night stay in the House of Pain, and it felt proper to venture into that valley of darkness alone.

 (Local ultrarunners not obeying the speed limit)

I wasn't alone, however, since thanks to the loop format I got to see EVERYONE. The New York Ultra Runners were having a great day and making the most of the early signs of Spring. I exchanged atta-boys with 78-year-old Sam Soccoli from North Babylon, NY, and the famous Roy Pirrung who was defying his 62-year-old age with a sub-5 hour pace. 70-old Patricia Delaney was also making good time, and always had a smile on. They sure breed 'em tough out here!

At Lap 8, I hit the marathon mark in 2:48 (almost a PR!) and fought desperately to hold my form. Michael Wardian gave a few words of encouragement as he lapped me, slowing but still on course record pace. At the turnaround, I could see that Dan Verrington had passed Scott Jaime, but Scott was keeping him in sight. Ben was still holding on strong and was about a minute ahead of me now. The Womens race found Yolanda Flamino in front after dropping the hammer on lap 3 and gapping the other women by a good 15 minutes. Annette Bednosky, however, was picking up speed in one of her classic negative split finishes.

(Ben Nephew keeps cranking)

As I entered Lap 10, my stomach knotted up, my head started spinning, and my muscles began twitching like crazy. My pace had slowed to a 7 minute mile as I walked the two aid stations to try and get more liquids in. The pain. My God, the pain! I could feel my heartbeat in the back of my eyeballs. But as the mile markers reminded me, this was almost over. Annette was kind enough to pick up the pace and run along with me until the last 1/2 mile, and I gave it everything. I crossed the finish in 3:20:48, good enough for 6th overall.

 (Mark Godale and Dan Verrington talk about the race)

I laughed out loud as I crossed the finish line. Did that just happen? Did I just take 17 minutes off my PR? Either the training is going well, or I have been seriously sandbagging for a long time now. As I spoke with the other finishers, it turns out many of them had breakthrough days. Michael Wardian (2:55) had beat his previous record by 40 seconds, with Malcolm Campbell (3:04) getting second with a great performance. Scott Jaime (3:13) had passed Dan Verrington (3:15) to claim third and the Masters win, but Dan set a new 45-49 age group American Record in the process. Ben was quite pleased with his 3:18 best on this course, and Mark Godale charged in the last laps to finish a few minutes behind me. Jesse Raginer clocked a 3:28 in his first 50k - not bad at all!

 (2010 Womens 50k Road National Champion, Yolanda Flamino)

(Scott Jaime gets the Masters payday from RD Amy Goldstein)

Yolanda Flamino won the Womens division in 3:34, with Annette Bednosky (3:43) taking second and winning the Masters division in a time well under her goal. Jill Perry (3:47) fought through some tough spots to hold onto third. (full results)

 (Scott Jurek, me, and 2010 50k Road National Champion, Michael Wardian)

(Sporting the hardware with 3rd place Womens finisher Jill Perry)

I felt like an Olympian with all my medals (a gorgeous finisher medal, a USATF medal for 6th overall and a USATF medal for 2nd in 40-44), and was tickled to get the $50 check for third Master. Paydays are rare in this sport! My thanks to RD Amy Goldstein, her wonderful volunteers and sponsors, Howard Nippert and the crew at USATF, and the nice folks of Long Island for putting on a great race. Thanks to the opportunity, assistance, and support you provided, I had a breakthrough day!

(Schwag overload! I'm in heaven...)

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Mike and Kim Rouse: The Ultra Marriage (San Diego News)

Michele Wallace from the San Diego News wrote a fun article about Mike and Kim Rouse, a couple who (somehow) gets along while training for ultras, Ironmans, and even the Ultraman. I love their quotes about each other - it's truly a match made in heaven!

You can read the whole article here.