The theme of today is obviously pizza. There are worse things I could talk to death, right?
Remember how I was a total creeper at the New York City Marathon expo when I spotted Dean Karnazes?
Well, his PR peep must have heard my desperate cries because I was recently contacted to interview him.
For those that aren’t big running fans – Dean Karnazes is the most awesome ultra runner in the world. He’s written several books, ran 50 marathons in 50 days a 200 mile relay and so much more.
But, the reason he’s my favorite is because he once ATE A PIZZA WHILE RUNNING! He called it an Italian Burrito – love that.
Interview with Dean Karnazes
RER : How did you train for New York? Do you even need to train to marathons at this point?
Karnazes: For me, I run marathons as training for longer ultra-marathons. When I run NYC I look at it as a training run more than a race. It’s too short a distance for me to be competitive. (laughter)
RER: How did the NYC Marathon go for you?
Karnazes: Just a walk in the park. (more laughter) In sincerity, the NYC Marathon is probably my favorite of all, and I’ve run hundreds of races on all 7 Continents of earth.
I once ran 50 marathons, in all 50 states, in 50 consecutive days, and NYC was the 50th and final marathon, so I have many fond memories. I usually run it in around 3-hours, and this year I think I was 3:04. Maybe one year I’ll train harder for it and improve my time, but right now I’m just enjoying every step of the way.
RER: Do you do speed work? What type?
Karnazes: For speed work, I primarily do something called, “hill repeats.” Essentially, I run at tempo up a hill, and then jog back down. Typically I’ll do 5-6 repeats of varying duration and incline.
RER: How many miles are you running a week right now?
Karnazes: It varies tremendously because of my rather insane travel schedule. A typical range is somewhere between 70 to sometimes upwards of 200 miles per week.
RER: What do you eat before a long run? After?
Karnazes: Usually before a run I’ll have some Greek-style yogurt – unsweetened and full fat, along with some berries or a chopped banana and some nuts, either almonds or walnuts. Afterward I’ll rehydrate with some ZICO coconut water unsweetened and lots of organic fruit. For protein my favored go-to is wild Pacific salmon. Living in San Francisco the supply of fresh seafood is plentiful.
RER: What do you do to recover from your runs? Ice bath? Compression?
Karnazes: First and foremost, I replace the fluids and electrolytes depleted during the event. I’ve tried just about everything, but find that simple coconut water works best. When practical, I find ice baths to be tremendously beneficial, and I am also a big proponent of compression.
The other thing I highly recommend, which might be a bit counterintuitive, is going for a run the next day. Okay, it’s more like a hobble, but I encourage people to try to run a few miles the day after a race. I think getting your heart rate elevated and moving you body really helps flush out your system from the metabolic byproducts created during the race. Active recovery is something I practice and it helps.
Question: If you saw someone famous that you adore – would you go up to them?