Runner’s World Tour + Trail Run

I think I fell in love with running all over again this weekend.

Runner’s World invited about a dozen “influencers” – running bloggers from all over the country to experience the Runner’s World Races and Festival in Bethlehem, PA.

It all began Thursday evening with a dinner and tour of Runner’s World Headquarters.  We joined RW editors for burgers, pasta salad and desserts and then Bart Yasso took us on a tour of the offices, including his own office.

RW Yasso tour

RW editors dinner

We heard from David Willey (Editorin-Chief), Amby Burfoot on his new book coming out, and met Deena Kastor.

Post tour, we got fitted for shoes with Altra Running’s founders, Golden and Bryan.

RW Altra trail info

Early Friday morning, Altra staff met us at the site of the trail run to give us a quick peek at it on a walk/jog through the woods.

Altra founder Golden (and record holding 2:45 marathoner as a 12 year old!!) shared his story growing up as the kid of a professional runner and working in a running store since age 9.  Do you know the main reason runners go to a specialty running store for shoes? Injuries!

RW Altra story Golden

To help people feel better, he and his dad were constantly tampering with shoes – telling them to loosen the ties by the toes, and eventually de-glueing the base, taking out the layer that added height, gluing the cushioning back on and having people run more naturally.  And interestingly enough, they found that people began to feel better.  And then word spread like wildfire and everyone wanted these “modified” shoes that they were not *technically* selling.

So Golden, his cousin and his best friend took the leap and started the business out of a basement 4 years ago.  It’s pretty astounding that they are now in the top ten selling shoes!

His story alone convinced me to give the shoes a go- but not this weekend.  I need to ease into them slowly, like you would with any minimalist shoe to prevent injury.

Golden also held a clinic on proper running form that I found really valuable.  I’ll save more details on that for another post.

RW Altra running clinic

We had an amazing lunch with recipes from the Runner’s World cookbook (which I can’t wait to use!) and I totally lucked out to have Deena Kastor join my table.  She was completely humble and down to earth as she shared stories of her daughter, her training, and her master’s record at the Chicago marathon last weekend.

RW lunch with Deena

She gave a talk to our whole group on the power of positive thinking- words that resonate with me in the teaching I do with health coaching as well.

After a little down time, we all showed up at 3pm for the trail race.

I was relieved to hear Golden and other trail runners call this run “technical” because it was NOT easy! It was extremely rocky and hilly.  My eyes did not come off the ground once.  I kept repeating “quick feet, quick feet” to ensure that I didn’t trip or roll an ankle.

RW Trail run complete

Somehow I came out unscathed and even managed 3rd in my age group! Rock star Allie came in 3rd overall and 1st in her age group.

I can appreciate trail running and the attraction of running off road, but it was tough. Of course, afterwards we had the runner’s high of completing the challenge and I will likely be back to run it next year…

Our group went out for pizza and then my roommate, Susan, and I tried to get to bed in good time for our early morning.  The 5k and 10k were up next… to be continued tomorrow…

Have you run a trail race or run in Altras?

Have you seen Bart Yasso at a race? He really is as friendly as everyone says, and was more than willing to pose through the dozens of “Barties” all weekend.  🙂

20 thoughts on “Runner’s World Tour + Trail Run

  1. Well done Laura! So much to capture but you seemed to do it!! Thanks for the shout out but you know I was cursing each quick footed step of that race – OMG! I did love hearing directly from the founders of Altra and of course nothing beats a tour from Bart Yasso himself and lunch with Deena! Did that really happen? Such a great weekend. I want to go back!
    Allie recently posted..The Rundown – On The Road AgainMy Profile

  2. It was great to hang out with you. I found Golden’s clinic valueable as well. I think proper running form can help every runner. I found him to be such a captivating speaker as well.
    Hollie recently posted..Runners World FestivalMy Profile

  3. Looks like an amaaazing time! I’ve never done trail running before, but have been thinking of trying it – there’s a place not too far from here with great trails. Maybe some weekend I’ll give it a shot. Congrats on your race!

  4. I am so, so envious of your weekend. What a very special event! I got to meet Deena Kastor earlier this year at an Atlanta Track Club event, and I loved that she talked about running (and life) as being a series of choices and that we get to CHOOSE the outcome. I found her words and her journey to be truly inspiring. And of course, Bart Yasso is always so fun to be around. I had the chance to have dinner with him several years ago and have run into him at a few events and races. He’s always uplifting and funny to be around.

    Glad you had such a great time. xo
    Jesica @rUnladylike recently posted..What Not Running Looks LikeMy Profile

  5. Trails scare me a little because I don’t want to hurt myself. I actually did my first trail run a few months ago with my husband. I actually loved it and actually managed to come in 3rd in my age group. I was shocked.
    Amanda recently posted..Weekly Meal PlanningMy Profile

  6. It looked like so much fun! I ran my second Marathon there in the Lehigh Valley– it’s beautiful running country. Deena Kastor is from my current home town.. In fact, I’m friends with her sister in law. I can tell you had so much fun! Congrats on such an exciting and successful weekend!
    Lisa @ RunWiki recently posted..5 Minute Cherry Tomato Cashew PestoMy Profile

  7. I love trail running. We do it regularly here in the Lynn Woods and boy is it so different than just running on the road. I have never run in Altras but may have to try them. Sounds like you had an amazing time. Can’t wait to hear more!!!!
    Carrie recently posted..Monday, MondayMy Profile

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