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Catra Corbett — January, 2013
Catra Corbett is an accomplished ultra marathon runner who has finished over 100 events of 100 miles or more. She is one of only four people and two women to accomplish this feat. Catra ran 14 races of 100 miles or more in 2013 to reach and exceed the 100 total. In 2004 she did the 424 mile round-trip of the John Muir Trail over many 12,000 and 13,000 peaks in just over 12 days, a feat which no one has attempted to break yet. Each year since the 49 year old has turned forty she does a ‘birthday run’ of hours equal to her age and raises money for charity while doing so. Catra turned to fitness and running after a short bout of substance abuse and now inspires others to use positive means in life to overcome adversity. She is known in the ultra-running community for her bright-colored hair and clothing, piercings, tattoos and outgoing personality. Catra works for Whole Foods and currently resides in Fremont, California.
GCR:We all love round numbers and the accomplishment of having run one hundred events of 100 miles or more sounds both amazing and exhausting. What is the significance of this milestone for you and to inspire others to run and achieve goals that may be beyond what they think they can do?
CCA hundred 100-milers is a big goal and I had no plan of trying to run that many of them when I started running them back in 1999. It just kind of got going and I found that was my favorite distance. Anything can happen. You can be the best runner in the world and 100 miles can take you down. It is more of a mental challenge and I am pretty mentally tough. Running through a day and maybe two nights is way more fun for me than running a 50k or 50-miler.
GCR:Could you have imagined this ‘100 – 100s’ achievement of when you started running ultra races?
CCI never had any idea that I would run this many, but last year I realized I could get to 100 by the end of the year if I kept pushing myself, so that was my plan. I ran 13 of them, or actually 14 if you include my birthday run which I finished in December, so now I am up to one hundred and one.
GCR:How was the buildup for you and your running friends as you approached 100-miler number 100?
CCAmongst my friends it was exciting, but for most people it was so far out there for them to even understand. Most had an attitude of something like, ‘Why would you want to do that?’ But my friends were excited. Others have done it and I am the second woman behind Monica from Canada. But since only three others have done this it is pretty amazing to think about. It is time consuming and fortunately I have a job where I don’t work on Friday, Saturday and Sunday so I don’t have to request any time off from work.
GCR:How much do you train to always be ready to run so many lengthy races?
CCEver since I did my first 100-miler and realized I liked that distance I set my goals to do another one and another one. By the third year I was doing multiple 100-mile races per year and always trained the same. I try to run a minimum of 80 miles a week. In the summer since it stays lighter longer I will go up on trails more. At that time of year i generally run about 120 miles a week since the weather is nicer and warmer. Sometimes in the winter when I’m getting ready for a race I will run 100 miles in a week.
GCR:Do you feel there is a minimum number or an optimum number of 100-mile races an ultra-runner should do each year to get a bounce from the previous ones, but not so often to be mentally or physically drained?
CCMost people don’t do as many as I did last year. Most will do one or two or four a year. Those who are really into 100-milers run one per season, which is four per year. Many people have a body that can’t handle more than that. Last year I did three in three weeks a week off and then two more for five over six weeks. They are mentally hard to do so many in a row and it depends on the person. I usually like to do one or two per month.
GCR:Why do you think that you are able to run so many long races compared to others – is it genetics, strength and flexibility exercises, diet or some combination?
CCLast year I became a fruitarian which is based on a book by Douglas Graham called the ‘80-10-10 Diet.’ It’s 80 percent raw fruits, 10 percent raw vegetables and 10 percent raw nuts. I eat almost 100 percent fruit during the week and add spinach, kale and nuts on the weekend to my mix. I got PRs at almost every distance last year. I’m faster at 49 years old than at 35 years old. Working out in the gym totally helps. Strength training is key for a lot of runners. I emphasize that we need a strong core and have to strengthen the muscles around the knee in order to be able to do this long term. That helps to avoid injuries.
GCR:How did you initially decide to become a vegetarian?
CCWe had steers and lambs on our property when I was a child. I came home one day and out of nine head of cattle all had been sold except one that I had named Charley. He let me go up to him and I just loved that steer to death. Then another day I came home and my brother opened up the freezer which was totally full of meat. He said, ‘Charley’s in the freezer!’ So that is how I became a vegetarian at ten years old. Charley was in the freezer and I would never have a steak again or a hamburger. When we went to McDonalds I would have a filet of fish sandwich instead. I would eat chicken, but never had a hamburger after that. (interviewers note – ouch, very ouch!)
GCR:Could you discuss another interesting aspect in ultra running that we don’t have in shorter races which is the use of pacers and a crew?
CCI don’t necessarily always use pacers and a crew. Sometimes I prefer to be by myself. But last year I had a lot of people crewing me and pacing me so I could stay focused on where I needed to be and that was fine. I did the 144-mile double run around Lake Tahoe and it is necessary to have a crew for that. Running around Lake Tahoe twice is like doing the Badwater race in terms of distance and they are both on the road. It is fun to have a good group of friends who can keep me motivated and help me laugh. Most of them are ultra runners training for other races so they want to be out there and pacing 38 or 40 miles. It’s great to have someone motivating you when you are really fatigued.
GCR:On the other side of the coin is it equally fun for you to do pacing and crewing for others when you aren’t racing?
CCI haven’t been able to do much of that though I will at the Hurt 100. I’ve run that race for the past 14 years and this is my first year not running it.
GCR:Is it hard to break that streak?
CCI haven’t finished the 100 miles every time because they have a 100k distance option. So I have finished the 100 mile race there seven times. The past five years I have only officially done the 100k though it could have been as much as 80 miles as they just give you credit for 100k if you drop out before 100 miles. I do have another 100-miler lined up for the following week as I’d be freaking out if I was just pacing and crewing without my own upcoming race.
GCR:What do you feel is the importance of solo running versus group running in training?
CCI mostly run by myself as I like going out for 40, 50 or 60 mile training runs at my own pace. I look at training runs as fun whereas when I race that is where I push myself. I want to do this for a really long time so I run because it’s fun. If I didn’t have fun being out in the wilderness I wouldn’t do this. I do like my alone time because I work for Whole Foods and am with customers all day. So being out there alone is better for me to get in my own thoughts and to plan things. But it is fun to have people to run with sometimes.
GCR:Though you talk about running alone, I see so many pictures you post on Facebook of running with your dog, Truman, and I know you have had other dogs in the past. How much does this add to your life to have your little, furry friend out there with you?
CCIt is so much fun because he actually inspires me. I have people e-mailing me that Truman inspires them because last year he ran over 1,700 miles. I kept a log for him and he ran a lot of miles. He weighs only ten pounds and loves to go. He is a rescue dog and came from a not-so-good situation with a woman who meant well, but she was hoarding 22 dogs. He couldn’t walk on a leash, was afraid of everything and had absolutely no energy because all he did was hide inside of the house where he lived. The only outdoor experience he had was going in the back yard. If I took him out on the road, noise and cars scared the heck out of him. But once I took him out on the trails and let him loose off leash he just followed me and the rest is history. He came alive on the trail.
GCR:Out of all the 100-milers you have done are there a few that stand out as extremely memorable because the course was tough, you were having a bad day, the weather was rough or the course was beautiful?
CCThe Wasatch 100-miler the second year of the six times I did it stands out. It is in the Wasatch Mountains in Utah. I was ready to drop at mile 31 as it was so cold I was hypothermic. This guy I had met the year before, Robert Poller, helped. That year the runner I was pacing had dropped out and I asked the race organizers if I could keep running solo as I wanted to get in a 62-mile training run and they said that was fine. I came upon Robert and he wasn’t going to make it to the finish. He had about five miles to go and I told him he could do it. I got him to the finish two minutes before the cutoff time. Anyways, to fast forward I saw him at the race, we were reminiscing and he was so thankful I helped him get in under the cutoff. At mile 31 I was going to drop out because I was hypothermic and I didn’t have dry, warm clothes to change into until I got to 52 miles where I had sent my drop bag. Robert was standing at the aid station and said, ‘You’re not dropping.’ I said, ‘Aren’t you running the race?’ Then he told me he had got up that morning, it was too cold and something told him not to run. He said now he knew why he wasn’t supposed to run as it was his turn to help me. If he hadn’t been there I would have dropped out. Out of the kindness of his heart he drove to the 52 mile point, got my drop bag and drove back. I waited in a warm car until he got back with my dry clothes and I changed into them. A friend of his was at the aid station taking a break and we ran together and I finished. How weird that was – he was supposed to be running the race, had come from New York and had never not started a race he was at! Who does that? Another memorable race is when I ran the Hurt 100 the second year and out of fifty starters maybe twelve finished. It rained the entire race, the trail was like a stream and my feet were wet the entire time. I don’t know how I finished but the people working the aid stations were so good. There were times I wanted to drop out and they would say, ‘No, no, you keep going - Just one foot in front of the other.’ So they would push me out of the aid station and I would keep going.
GCR:It is interesting in many ultra marathon events there are multiple distances such as 50 miles, 100k and 100 miles. Have you had any races where you were aiming for 100 miles and were well along, say at 80 or 90 miles and you had to drop out?
CCI’ve got pulled at the Western States 100-miler twice late in the race around 85 miles and I had thoughts like, ‘I could do the rest by walking.’ Once I passed out at that aid station and I found out later that my level of vitamin B-12 was very low. Then last year I had a DNF as I had stomach issues from an ulcer problem, was super dehydrated and had lost about eight pounds. It’s funny as it was the same group of volunteers and their reaction was, ‘No – not again!’ I was close but there was no way I could make it as I could barely move.
GCR:What are some of your health issues that are much more troublesome when running ultra marathons?
CCI got an ulcer because I had been taking Advil during 100 mile races and we shouldn’t do that. I hadn’t taken a massive amount, but it affected me. So, a couple months after I had the incident with my stomach lining my doctors said it was okay to take Tylenol during a race. But that is what caused my stomach bleeding the second time. I later read up on the internet about side effects of Tylenol and found that it can cause stomach bleeding in a small percentage of people so now I use no anti-inflammatory pills. I use homeopathic remedies for pain like Arnica.
GCR:You mentioned to me previously about your birthday run where you ran 138 miles in 49 hours to celebrate your 49th birthday and to raise money for charity. For how many years have you been doing this birthday run and how important is it for you to give back to charity through your efforts?
CCI started my birthday run when I turned forty and decided to run for forty hours. I plan on stopping next year after I turn fifty as fifty hours is enough and will be the end of it. Raising money for charities is really important to me because we run so much for ourselves and I am totally willing to give back to charitable organizations. It is important to make people aware of what is going on. Last year I raised money in several races for KARF which is the Kentucky Animal Relief Fund. They foster senior dogs that have been abandoned or who are sick and the owners are unable to deal with it any longer. KARF goes to shelters and rescues the senior dogs that are going to be the first ones who are put down. They have a facility where the senior dogs live. They try to adopt out the dogs, but if they don’t the dogs can live out their time at the facility until they pass on. Last year I raised money for a man, Charlie Hugh, who will be climbing Mount Everest in May. My friend, Tim Medvitz, owns an organization called the ‘Heroes Project’ and he takes wounded vets up the seven summits which are the highest peaks on the seven continents. So Charlie is one of the wounded vets Tim is working with. They are doing a climb up Mt. Baldy in Southern California to raise money for the Everest trip and I will be doing the Mt. Baldy climb to help out.
GCR:With the internet and social media it is so much easier now than in the past to increase awareness of good projects. How important is it to share what you do and to keep up with others through blogging and social media?
CCI love to write about what I do and not everyone writes about things in their past like drug addiction. Some people e-mail me and are unable to talk about things in their past due to their current job. But it is important to me to say where I’ve been and how I’ve moved to where I am now. Then others can read and feel that if I can do it that they can too. So it is imperative for me to help others that are struggling with drug addiction, alcohol addiction, anorexia and other eating disorders. I let them know that I’ve been in a bad place and that they can totally get out of that black hole. I encourage people to find something else to do, be positive and to love themselves.
GCR:For those who are unfamiliar with your story and your background, could you offer up where you were in life before fitness and running became a part of your routine?
CCSure. Back in 1994 I was doing speed and methamphetamines with an ex-boyfriend and was into that whole club scene. Basically, we got arrested, I spent one night in jail and I was scared straight. Spending one night in jail was not where I wanted to be. I sat there in the cell thinking, ‘How did I get here? What am I doing with my life?’ I only had used drugs for two and a half years, so I am thankful it wasn’t longer as some people are stuck for a long time. I went to an outpatient drug rehab facility and had a good therapist. I quit there and never turned back. I had to get rid of my friends and I started working out in a gym.
GCR:How did you get started running?
CCI started walking on the treadmill at the gym and eventually two years later ran my first 10k. Three months later I ran my first marathon so those were my first running steps.
GCR:For most people who walk or run, a marathon is on their ‘bucket list.’ How did you morph from a walker to a 10k to a marathon and then to ultras? What was the draw?
CCThe second year of my marathon running I decided I would run all of the marathons in California which required 12 marathons to complete that goal. I started running on trails and heard other runners talking about ultra races. At the time I had no friends who were runners. The only interactions I had with runners were when I was at races. At a trail marathon I met this older man and he was mentioning ultras. I thought that six more miles to run a 50k wasn’t that much further. So after doing a few trail marathons I decided to do a 50k trail race. The third year I did a 50k, had a week off from racing, did another 50k, ran two 50-milers and four months after running my first 50k I ran my first 100-miler. So I ramped up quickly.
GCR:How is your personality and background suited for long distance training and running, and taking on what you have said others think is ‘crazy?’
CCI’m just really stubborn. In high school I played soccer and hated running. Anything involving running I hated. When we had the physical fitness challenge in high school I refused to do the running part even though I could have done it. When I was younger my dad was a soccer coach and he had run many half marathons when I was growing up. My brother was the runner in our family. When I set my mind to something I do it. It’s like quitting drugs, which is going on twenty years, once I want to do something or stop doing something that is what I do. That is part of the challenge and who I am. I look at people who want to do what we do and can’t because they have an injury or disability and I tell myself, ‘I’m running for them.’ I try to look at each day positively. I can run and I’m going to go out the door and run.
GCR:It’s funny that you mentioned how you didn’t like running as a kid. When you started ultra running what types of emotions did you get from your family members such as surprise or pride?
CCMy father passed away when he was 49 and I was 17 years old so he would be amazed if he was alive now. But he is watching down on me. My mom passed away ten years ago and got to see me go from where I was to a runner and she said, ‘I can’t believe you run!’ I have a brother who is a personal trainer and sister that is a body builder and both of them know how I was and are amazed. My brother has said that he doesn’t know how I do what I am doing. I’ve tried to get him to run a marathon or ultra and he has decided to let me pursue running.
GCR:Another area for which you are well-known is for the flamboyant colors in your clothing and hair, your piercings and your tattoos. Is this an extension of an extroverted personality?
CCI am a licensed cosmetologist and worked in the salon industry for years starting at age twenty so all of that fed the artsy side of me. There was a time when I was more Goth-oriented and into black and white. But I love color. It makes me happy and colorful things make people smile. I like looking like a rainbow.
GCR:Let’s talk a bit about your future running plans. What are you aiming for in the next couple of years and if you keep this up and stay healthy, could you see yourself aiming for 200 100-milers down the road on your long-term radar?
CCI ran 14 races of at least 100 miles in 2013 after a previous annual high of 12 and I plan to run 15 races of 100 miles or more in 2014. So we will see as I am going to keep doing these races. Some are longer than 100 miles. One this year is a 214-miler. I’m doing a 125-miler in two months and I do a 131-miler on a 50k course every year. I’m also going to go for the women’s unsupported ‘self-packing’ record on the John Muir Trail which goes from Yosemite to Whitney. I would also like to do the unsupported women’s speed record on the Tahoe Rim Trail. I’d like to do a 200-mile race and would like to run across the United States at some point. I just need more time. I’m going to do the Pacific Crest Trail next year. I did 2,000 miles of it in 2007, but I got really sick, hurt me knee and had to stop, so I would like to finish that one.
GCR:It seems like with what you are doing that some companies or sponsors that could benefit from the excitement of having you as a spokesperson might potentially step up and help you with finances and time to achieve some of your goals.
CCI do get a lot of free stuff, but this year I am going to finish writing a book I am working on so, hopefully, that will help me do more things I would like to do. I have done a lot of public speaking and would like to do more speaking engagements. I want to go to races, interact with people and touch people’s lives. A lot of race directors do give me free entries which is helpful. They know I bring people along and that I write about my experiences in my blog and on Facebook.
GCR:For people who are marathon runners that have been thinking about moving up to longer races, what are some suggestions you would give in training?
CCWhen someone moves up from a marathon to a 50k I think that back-to-back long runs are important. But going from marathons to 50ks aren’t that much harder. For me it only was difficult because my first 50k was in 110 degree weather. Its six more miles so it is doable if you are already running marathons and have a good marathon training program. One important thing is that if it is a trail ultra marathon that you should hike the uphills which are hard for runners coming from a marathoning background, and I was one of those. All the people at my first ultra were telling me as I ran past them that I should hike the hills or they would see me later. And sure enough they passed me before the end when I was falling apart.
GCR:How about when the increase in distance is much greater as one moves from 50k to 50 miles and then the 100 mile distance?
CCSome people go right from marathons to 50 miles and I think back-to-back runs of 25 miles one day and 20 miles the next day are great training. A lot of people train for 100 mile races on only 50 miles per week, but as they get close to their races they run long on back-to-back days. You have to have time on your feet. Also, night training runs definitely help. I didn’t have that experience before my first 100-miler. There was no internet to ask questions. I didn’t know anyone who ran these long races. There weren’t LED flashlights. It was old school. I didn’t know what would happen at night, but I had read about some people who hallucinated and fell asleep on their feet. I thought that might happen and it did. Then someone helping in the race gave me a caffeine pill which helped me get through the night. If you haven’t experienced being awake for 24 to 30 hours at a time before then you have to practice night running. I did have the experience of staying up for two days when I was doing speed so that bad habit from years ago maybe did prepare me to come alive at night. I tell myself in long races that the first 50k is a warm up. Then around six o’clock in the evening when others are slowing down I start speeding up. I tell myself that it is time to run and I get into the race more.
GCR:As we get older most of us who have a regular fitness routine are hopeful of exercising into our sixties, seventies and eighties. Do you see yourself possibly gearing down to 50-milers and doing more hiking and walking, but still being as active as you can be?
CCYes. I look at older runners who are in the sixties and seventies who are still doing this. There are some 80 year olds still doing 100-milers. My roommate, whom I rent a room from, is 68 years old and he is getting ready to do his second 100-miler. I tell people that it is never too late to start doing 100-milers. My roommate did his first one at age 62 and he had said all along that he would never run a 100-miler. But he was around me and I guess the bug rubbed off on him. He was a faster marathoner when he was younger, but then he started doing 50ks and 50-milers. He said he would never do a 100-miler and now he is doing his second one at the Hurt 100. He has paced me there before and done 100k on that course so he knows what to expect.
GCR:As more and more people run, jog and walk marathons, there is something about the 100-mile races and earning a 100-mile belt buckle that seems to draw some of us who have run fast marathons, many marathons or both. What are your comments about this?
CCRunners like you should set a goal to do something you haven’t done before. It is always great to challenge ourselves. We should push ourselves as far as we can and not limit ourselves.
GCR:As a wrap up question, when you look back at what you have learned in life through running, overcoming adversity and the sharing within the running community, how do you summarize the main points you would like to convey?
CCAlways think positive and don’t let anything get you down. There is always a bright side to the dark side. Remain positive and your life can only get better. Negative thinking keeps your life stuck. By positive thinking is the only way I have been able to do what I do and anyone can if they have the right attitude.
 Inside Stuff
Nicknames‘Dirt Diva’ is my trail nickname. I’ve been called ‘Tackle box’ because of all of my piercings. As a child I was called ‘Mouthy,’ because I was so quiet – believe it or not. As a child people had to talk to me to get me out of my shell which is why my parents put me into group sports. Actually, something most people don’t know is that my first name is Carol. I’ve been using ‘Catra’ for a long time which comes from a cartoon character on the series, She-Ra, Princess of Power. There was a villainess named ‘Catra’ and one of my friends in Cosmetology school brought in a ‘Catra’ doll and thought it looked like me. I had a long black ponytail like her, people started calling me ‘Catra’ and it came from there
Hobbies/InterestsRock climbing. I’d like to climb Mt. Capitan again. I attempted it with my ex-husband in 2003. I took a fall; broke my ulna and we had to rappel out. So that is one for the next two years – to climb Mt. Cap and do more rock climbing, though it is a dangerous sport
Favorite moviesI just saw ‘Lone Survivor’ which is a very good movie. My all-time favorite has to be ‘Edward Scissorhands’ as it is about diversity and I can totally relate to that
Favorite musicI like industrial alternative music including British music by groups like the Kaiser Chiefs. My favorite song is ‘Come a Little Closer’ by Caged Elephant
Favorite TV showsWhen I was growing up I liked ‘Growing Pains.’ I don’t watch much TV now except for ‘Shark Tank’
Favorite readingI like any books that have to do with the Pacific Crest Trail, so anything people have written on that subject. I also like books about Mt. Everest – not any one book in particular, but I have many. My favorite magazines are Trail Runner, Ultra Running and other running magazines. I also like Rock and Ice, which is a climbing magazine
First carA Toyota Corolla
Current carA Dodge Nitro, which is similar to a Jeep
First JobMy very first job was working at the snack bar at soccer games
FamilyMy sister, Patty, will be sixty this year and she is a competitive body builder. My brother, Jay, is 47 and he is a very awesome personal trainer, an awesome dad and a great guy
PetsTruman is my ‘son.’ He’s the little crazy four-legged running dog who ran over 1,700 miles last year and who will be running his first marathon this year. He will also do his first 14,000 foot high peak. We have been gearing up as last year he did 12,000 foot high peaks a bunch of times and he has no altitude issues whatsoever. My prior dog, Rocky, who passed away, had issues even camping out at 10,000 feet. But Truman just goes. I will put him in a pack when we go up the really rocky summits where it is dangerous for him
Favorite breakfastIn the morning I usually run and then come back and cut up a couple of mangoes and a whole cantaloupe. I may have some dates and make it all into a smoothie. My favorite fruit is probably mangoes. I absolutely love mangoes and dates
Favorite mealFor dinner I usually have tomatoes and avocado with some pineapple. Like I said, I work at Whole Foods Market so I can get any kind of fruit I want
Favorite beveragesI like Espresso, which is the only bad thing I still do. I don’t drink alcohol
First running memoryI have horrible running memories as a kid. My mom would clean the house on Sunday and my father would take me and my brother out to the soccer field at the high school and make us race each other. I absolutely hated it and would cry as my brother would always beat me. But my dad was always so positive and motivating and would tell me it was okay, that this would help me and that one day I would be able to beat him. He was so nice about it even though we knew my brother was going to kick my butt every time. I would hate it and say, ‘I never get to win! I never get to win!’ And my brother was younger than me
Running heroesMy friend, Kathy D’Onofrio, who has paced me and crewed form me. She won Western State a couple times back in the ‘80s. She even beat Ann Treason. She has been doing these long races since she was 18 years old and she is my age. She finishes last some times and I admire her because others who were fast like she was have fallen off the face of the earth in the running community as they don’t want to finish last. She has longevity, ism so humble and is so inspiring. She will say, I’m not that good,’ but she is a good runner. She has good days and bad days but it doesn’t matter to her. Even if she has the worst race of her life she still cheers every person that passes by her. When I did my 100th 100-miler she finished with Ed Eisenhower, the jester runner. He is such a great guy that he could have passed her, but decided to finish with her. Kathy’s mom had just died and Ed thought it was the right thing to run in with her
Greatest running momentIn 2004 when I did the yo-yo of the John Muir Trail. It is 424 miles and I did it in 12 days, 4 hours and 57 minutes which no one has attempted to break yet. That was very, very hard. I went one direction in five days and I had totally blistered feet on the way back. All I could do is put one foot in front of the other as I was going over mountain passes of 12,000 and 13,000 foot peaks trying to make my way back to Yosemite. I cried a lot every single morning when I woke up, had to pop my blisters and keep going. That is my proudest moment because I did it all by myself and proved to myself that I am really tough. That is where it started that I got super tough
Worst running momentI can’t actually think of one other than times when I’ve been out in the wilderness during races and have had bladder infections. I have suffered from that a lot and it is due to dehydration. I’ve had CAT scans and there is nothing wrong with me. There have been some painful times where I don’t know how I finished the 100 miles. They haven’t turned into kidney infections because I always have my drop bags stocked with cranberry juice and I always take some powders with me that can correct the situation early upon onset. I take cranberry with Demanous and drink lots of water
Childhood dreamsI wanted to be a veterinarian and save all of the animals. I was in 4-H
Favorite Halloween costumeI always like being a witch. I was such a quiet little girl and so mellow that I always liked being something scary
Embarrassing momentNot too long ago I was running with Truman and when we were crossing the street his leash went in front of me and I fell smack down on my head in the middle of the road. People in traffic were getting out of their cars to see if I was okay. So that is it – Truman tripped me
Funny memoriesWe do crazy shenanigans. When I was running around Lake Tahoe we went into a casino because I wanted to get a photograph of us gambling during the middle of the night in the race. We went in and they don’t usually let you photograph inside a casino. So my friend, Donato, who was crewing for me, paid the blackjack dealer to take a picture of us and so they let us get photographed at the table inside the casino
Favorite places to travelI love northern California and travelling to Utah. I loved the Massanutten Mountain Run which is in Virginia. I went to Morocco and did the Marathon des Sables, which is 156 miles over six days in the Saharan Desert, back in 2003 and absolutely loved that. I would like to do more races like that so I am hoping to do races at Mont Blanc and the Spartathlon, which is a race in Greece from Sparta to Athens, in 2015