Is a 100 Mile Run a Long Enough Race to Really Challenge?

Phile-Rosenstein-BadwaterPhil Rosenstein decided he wanted to do an Ironman triathlon in 2004, before he even knew the length of the race.

“I ran cross-country in high school – the longest race was five miles or something,” he recalls. “I somehow got it into my head that I wanted to do an Ironman triathlon. Later that year, I ran my first marathon and six months later did the first Ironman.”

Then Rosenstein joined an Endurance List e-mail group and discovered ultrarunning when the first post was “At what point in a race do you sleep?” – which he first assumed was a mistranslation by an international runner.

Going Farther

“I didn’t know that stuff even existed or people could even do that,” he says. “These guys are elite professional athletes. There’s no way I could possible do this – could I? Maybe. Maybe if I really focused hard and trained hard. You get carried away. That’s what happens with a lot of us. A marathon’s not far enough. We’ve got to go farther than that.”

Phil-Rosenstein-Finishing-1

Rosenstein ran his first 100-mile race in Vermont in 2005, months after his first Marathon. He did two more that year, then five 100s, three 50s, two Ironman and one double Ironman in 2006.

In 2007, he tied with another runner for the most races 100 miles or more – nine 100s and three 150s.

“It became a lifestyle for me for a while,” says Rosenstein, who left his international pharmaceutical marketing job to become an animal control officer, then took a domestic pharmaceutical job where he often gave Monday presentations after a weekend of running. When that company was sold in late 2007, his severance supported him for a year.

“For a while, I was a professional runner,” he says. “It was the central part of my life really right up until 2010 or 2011. It was what I focused my life around. For three or four years, all I was doing was running races, giving speeches to running clubs about running, volunteering, pacing, coaching,”

In 2008, Rosenstein ran the Badwater 135 (from Death Valley up Mt. Whitney) just months after lung surgery because of complications from pneumonia. Doctors said his powerful cardiovascular system saved his life.

Three weeks later he started a 3,300-mile run across the country – Los Angeles to Chicago to Atlantic City, N.J, in 92 days, pushing a cart with his sleeping bag, clothes, and water. I just refused to give up

“I still don’t really look at it as I’m superhuman,” he says. “It’s just because I wouldn’t quit. I was like a robot bouncing against a wall until either the robot breaks or the wall breaks. I just refused to give up.”

Rosenstein found The Right Stuff about four years ago, a research-based product that improved on the trial-and-error attempts at physical care he had done in the past.          (Editor’s Note: Published studies show the formula is significantly better for fighting dehydration symptoms, protecting the body from overheating and increasing athletic endurance by over 20% more than any other NASA-tested formula).

“I used to joke that I put lotion on my feet that is made for cows and sold to farmers,” he says. “I used Pedialyte for kids, Ensure for old people. At the time it was ‘whatever works for you.’ This NASA-developed product was actually designed for this. A lot of time, money and energy was spent developing this and it’s what we found works. The Right Stuff works really well as far as giving your body the electrolytes it needs.” He takes a serving in every other water bottle during the day, every third bottle at night. “That’s what seems to work best for me. My legs always feel fresher at the end.”

Rosenstein, 44, married Karla, whom he met when she was a novice runner at a race in Leadville, Colo., several years ago. He lives in Colorado and works in inventory management. He last ran a 100-mile race in November 2012 because he is recovering from a fifth bout with pneumonia.

“I miss it,” he says. “It’s a culture all by itself. When I started doing these crazy races, there were 25 races in the country and probably 1,000 finishers a year – 75 to 100 people who would do more than one. It’s a small community. The sport’s grown a lot, but I do miss the people, the friendships, the places. You’re always running these races in beautiful parks – and the camaraderie you have! It’s 2 a.m., you’re at mile 75 or 80, it’s pouring rain, it’s 45 degrees. Whoever you come across on the trail is now your best friend in the world.”

How to Overcome Exercise-Caused Dizziness? Olympian and Ironman Champ Shares How

JZ-Wins-Half-MarathonJoanna Zeiger, who had been swimming from age 7 through college, got hooked on triathlons when she won her age group in her first race in 1994.

“I was looking for a new challenge,” she recalls. “Once I did my first race, I got hooked. I knew early on I had some talent for triathlon. When I first started running I didn’t like it much. It took several years before my running legs really came under me. I took to cycling pretty quickly. When you come from a swim background, you’re going to have an advantage in the swim over people who start later in life. I came to balance out my bike and run as well.”

Zeiger turned pro in 1998, after winning her age group at the Hawaii Ironman. She raced 10 to 12 triathlons a year, placing fourth in the Sydney Olympics in 2000 and 5 weeks later placed 5th in the Hawaii Ironman, making her the first person to compete in the Olympics and the Hawaii Ironman in the same year. Zeiger’s diversity led her to national championships in three distances: Olympic in 2001, Ironman in 2005, and 70.3 in 2008. In 2008, Joanna won the Ironman 70.3 World Championship in world record time.

I’ve been able to manage the dizziness better with the product (The Right Stuff).

Zeiger had experienced ongoing light-headedness and dizziness during races which peaked in 2009 during a triathlon in Boulder, Colorado.  She passed out and was taken to the hospital.  She found and researched the NASA-developed formula and began using The Right Stuff to solve the chronic racing-induced dizziness. “I was looking for some different sources to get more sodium intake,” she says. “I knew that increasing my sodium intake helped with the dizziness.  She tested it twice before implementing it into her race regimens.

The first time she used The Right Stuff was while training for a triathlon during a five and a half hour bike ride plus an 8-mile run.  She said she felt great!

The second test was a 100-mile bike ride with 1000’s of feet of climbing. It really solved her issue and she still uses it regularly. I’ve been able to manage the dizziness much better with The Right Stuff. I recommend it to the people that I coach; most of them end up doing better when they use The Right Stuff to help increase their sodium intake.”

Joanna retired from triathlons in 2010 after an injury during the 70.3 World Championship but continues to run – setting a Colorado state half-marathon record in her age group at the Revel Rockies Half Marathon in 2014. JZ-Run-cropped

Meanwhile, Zeiger, who has coached since 2003, established Race Ready Coaching (www.racereadycoaching.com) two years ago.

“We coach athletes of all ages and all abilities for all distances,” she says. “All my years of experience have made the coaching fun. It’s fun not only to work on your own goals but to see other people achieve their goals.”

Collegiate Sports Dietitians: Improving Sports Performance and Building Nutrition Awareness Across All Sports

Aaron CarbuhnAfter Aaron Carbuhn earned his master’s degrees in nutrition in 2008 and sport physiology in 2009 at Texas A&M, he moved to Houston and volunteered for 10 months at the University of Houston as a football assistant Strength and Conditioning coach and Sports Dietitian. A month after he took the job as sports nutritionist at the University of Kansas, Houston joined the fast-growing list of universities creating such positions.

“When I came out of school trying to find a collegiate Sports RD position, there were only 20 schools with a full-timer on staff,” he says, adding that the number has more than tripled. “My roles and responsibilities include assisting all of our sports teams with a multitude of nutrition needs – education, counseling, creating diet plans, team menu planning, and body composition testing.”

Carbuhn says, Athletes as well as schools are increasingly aware of nutrition’s key role in their academic, athletic, and personal lives.

Nutrition Awareness

“What’s the one thing that can affect all those parameters? Nutrition,” he says. “That needs to be addressed and improved in more collegiate athletic departments. When I was assisting as a Strength and Conditioning coach at the University of Houston, many athletes would ask questions about nutrition frequently.  I was definitely seeing that the need is there. There seems to be a lot of growth moving forward in the field of collegiate sports nutrition.”

Carbuhn first learned about The Right Stuff while volunteering as a Sports RD at Texas A&M under Amy Bragg. When he arrived at Kansas, The Right Stuff had already been introduced by his predecessor and current CPSDA (Collegiate and Professional Sports Dietitians Association) President Randy Bird. He set out to expand its use among more sport teams at Kansas.

The Right Stuff (hydration formula developed by NASA) is a vital thing

“It’s a vital thing,” he says. “You can’t just pound back a lot of salty foods in the middle of a practice or workout to help restore your electrolyte balance. I don’t believe that is going to sit too well in your stomach. The Right Stuff is available to all 16 sports. As a team approach, we use it primarily with our football and men’s and women’s basketball programs. For our remaining sports, we look provide it to particular athletes with difficulties in keeping a proper electrolyte balance, that can cause things like cramps, during training and competitive play.”

Carbuhn maintains his personal passion for strength training partly through lunchtime sessions in the weight room with coworkers.

“My love is in the weight room,” he says. “I still have the desire to improve my own athletic performance. To have the opportunity to use my knowledge in strength and conditioning as well as nutrition. I have been able to continue to physically develop further than I thought was possible at this stage of my life. I still love to write training programs and try different training modalities to keep it interesting and, of course, fun.”