My guest today is someone that likes to get out and explore the world on foot.
Those explorations have led him around the world, inspired his first book, and will undoubtedly provide us with a few stories today.
I am looking forward to going a few easy miles with Luke Tuttle and seeing where they take us.
Going In Blind
Luke Tuttle has been running for about 20 years, but he didn’t always identify as a runner.
While growing up, he played various sports and ran when it was required.
It wasn’t until his early 30s that he began to contemplate running.
He was getting close to 200 pounds and knew that he needed to make a change.
At the time, a co-worker was training for a marathon.
Luke didn’t know anything about running or the distances available.
A local running store had a half-marathon training group that Luke decided to join.
Luke recalls the early days of his running being hard.
It took a few years for Luke to truly acclimate to running.
For the first few years, his body would hurt the day after a run.
He dealt with various injuries, but thankfully nothing prevented him from running.
It was easy to get discouraged in the early stages.
It took 5 to 6 years of consistency before his body was resilient enough to handle more miles.
Luke shed about 40 pounds over the years which undoubtedly helped his running feel easier.
Strength = Endurance
Prior to becoming a runner, Luke had always enjoyed weightlifting.
His emphasis used to focus more on strength, but as his miles have increased over the years the scale has flipped.
He still believes in the value of strength and carves out one day a week for a solid weight-lifting session.
The strength he has gained over the years has only helped him to continually push his limits.
To date, Luke has run multiple ultra marathons.
When he first started out he didn’t even know such distances existed.
The Distance Ladder
As Luke progressed in distance, he took each step without knowing what the next thing would be.
A few years into his running, a friend of his suggested that he run the Chicago marathon.
Luke signed up with the goal of finishing in under 4 hours.
He successfully came in under his goal with less than a minute to spare.
Luke began to wonder what was next after the marathon.
One year after Chicago, he ran his first trail marathon.
That was his first foray into the trail world and he was hooked.
Once Luke discovered trail running, it didn’t take long for him to realize there were a variety of distances.
He worked his way through all the distances beginning with a 50k and most recently a 100-mile race.
The preparation for his first 100-mile race took him a year of training.
Luke built his training plan around multiple 50k and 50-mile races.
His first (so far) 100 was a very humbling experience.
It took him around 28 hours and he didn’t run for a month after the race.
Luke is drawn to the sport because it provides endless opportunities to set goals.
Exploring By Foot
Luke loves to travel and run, so it only made sense to start combining the two.
He has run races in various parts of the world and is nowhere close to stopping.
The races outside of the US are similar in format to ones in the US, but that is where the similarities end.
Luke has found that the fields in races overseas are often smaller and have more competitive athletes.
When it comes to the trail systems, Luke believes that Europe has the US beat.
While on his adventures, Luke would document his runs with both pictures and various data points.
He had the idea to compile the information about each run both for his kids and to also be a resource for others.
Ultra Running Destination
Luke started the website Ultra Running Destinations as a place to document all of his running adventures.
He set a goal to write one article every week for one year.
Along with his website, Luke recently published his first book, Ultrarunning Europe.
His book took 5 years of planning and content to create the finished product.
“Ultrarunning Europe is a comprehensive guidebook” of long-distance and extreme trails across Europe.
Luke has run plenty of official ultra races, but above all he enjoys solo endeavors.
Above all else, Luke stresses always to be prepared when exploring trails by oneself.
Adventuring into the unknown can be an incredible experience as long as no one is put into danger rescuing you.
Mentioned In This Episode:
- Ultrarunning Europe, Book by: Luke Tuttle
- Ultra Running Destinations
- Arnold Sports Festival
- 5K Pump & Run
- Bobcat Trail Marathon
- Pinhoti 100
Stay connected to Luke Tuttle by following him on Instagram.
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