“I’m comfortable saying I’m a marathoner and everything feeds into the next marathon and making sure that’s great. So if that means being a little out of shape for some summer racing or some off-season racing, that’s OK. I think you kind of check your ego when it comes to that stuff and know that it’s playing into the bigger picture.”
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Two-time Olympian Des Linden comes on the podcast and discusses a wide range of topics, including her pre-run coffee habits, how she pulled herself out of a slump last fall, what it’s like to live with a triathlete, how she’s approaching this year’s Boston Marathon, and the importance of being open and honest about her journey as an athlete.
“For me personally, it’s sharing the entire experience. I didn’t have to tell people that I was in a slump this fall or unmotivated or just didn’t want to get out the door. But I think it’s valuable and I think everyone goes through that—the person who’s finishing last and the pros too—it’s pretty universal and I think there’s a lot of experiences like that,” Linden told me. “There’s those days where you don’t want to go out and run and there’s those days where you just feel great and you share the entire experience and I think it will connect with more people. I think it’s just talking about all of it because it is just a very universal sport—good days, bad days, injuries, the whole thing—and so the more you can share with people, the more they’ll realize beyond the pace, everything is pretty similar. It’s right foot, left foot, right foot, left foot, repeat, and that’s all the way across the board, so there’s gotta be some things we can connect on. It’s just finding the ones that resonate.”
Also in this episode, the 34-year-old native of Chula Vista, Calif., talks about training under Keith and Kevin Hanson as a member of the Hansons-Brooks Distance Project for the past 12 years, the state of competitive running in the U.S., the distant appeal of ultrarunning, how she views her job as a professional athlete, what she’d like to accomplish before she’s done competing, the toughest athlete she’s ever raced against, and so much more.
Related links, references, and resources:
— Follow Des on Instagram and Twitter.
— Fitter, Happier, More Productive: Linden, in her own words for Motiv Running, on busting out of a running slump.
— What are Desi’s running secrets? Brad Stulberg reveals them for Outside magazine.
— “If you can win in Boston, that pretty much makes you a legend as an American, so it’d be nice to have that one on my résumé,” Linden told me in 2015. “It really is the marathon.”
— Kenya Project: A Competitor.com series documenting Linden’s training for the 2014 Boston Marathon in Iten, Kenya.
— Linden, self-proclaimed “bourbon geek.” A look inside the marathoner’s impressive whiskey collection.
— Chris Chavez of Sports Illustrated looks at how Linden trained for the Rio Olympics. (In short: hard.)
This episode of the morning shakeout podcast was edited by John Isaac at BaresRecords.com.