The Fittest (Real) Men in America

Meet Outside's Fittest (Real) Men in America. Emulation is encouraged.

IT manager and biking badass Steve Yore, Grooming by Garen Tolkin (Jill Greenberg)
Steve Yore

Forget what the mags with the shirtless, six-packed dudes on the cover tell you. Fitness is not about 20-inch guns and 10-minute full-body workouts. Nor is it about miracle diets or flashy sponsorships. And it's certainly not about looking good at the gym. Fitness is about living at your peak, no matter what stands in your way. It's about obeying the alarm clock, peeling yourself out of bed, and finding that extra hour most people think they'll never have. And since it's never been easier for average Joes to connect to coaches, network with training partners, and find cutting-edge advice and gear online, the only thing between you and the podium is commitment. To prove it, we set out to find real guys with real careers who somehow make time to train and perform like pros (and often beat them at their own game).

STEVE YORE, 39, SANTA FE, NEW MEXICO
Over the past year, Yore has notched top-ten finishes in ten 100-plus-mile mountain-bike races around the West, including an impressive fourth-place solo performance in February at 24 Hours in the Old Pueblo, the largest 24-hour bike race in the country—all while working 50 hours a week (plus an hour commute) as the IT manager at Eclipse Aviation.

For me it's about momentum. You've got to keep moving toward your goals. There are so many things that can get in the way, but they can be rolled over. I refuse to let work be the only reason to get up early or stay up late. When I wake up in the morning, I think of finishing that workout. To do that, I've got to get out of bed, get my shorts on, and get on the bike. You set those small goals to achieve the bigger goal. I'm not trying to impress anyone; I'm doing it for myself, so there are no external pressures. That helps. And I'm not special; I think everybody has the energy to do it. Momentum is energy. Once you get going, it's like a rock rolling down a mountain: It's not stopping. You don't want to be in its way.

C9 by Champion Half-Zip Running Jacket ($20; target=.com); Moncler Warwick insulated blazer ($1,300; moncler.com); C.P. Company Black Pants ($365; cpcompany.com)

Brock Gavery

The Fittest Real Men in America

Brock Gavery
Brock Gavery

BROCK GAVERY, 31, SEATTLE, WASHINGTON
In the past four years, Gavery, a full-time civil-rights attorney, has run 40 ultramarathons. That includes five 100-milers, like the Hardrock 100 Endurance Run, in which he finished arespect­able 27th last year. If logging 60 to 100 miles a week in training isn't enough, he's also a Class V kayaker who runs 50-foot waterfalls and hits the river every week—often before work.

I'm lucky. I don't have to motivate to run or kayak. I love both. I would have to motivate not to do them. I do a lot of dawn patrols. I usually start running about 4:30 a.m. and I'm at work by 7 a.m. Then I'll train again after work. I just try to use my time efficiently. I'll throw a roast in the oven and go for a two-hour run. Each night, I have my gear set at the door waiting for me, so when I wake up it's there and I'm out the door. Sometimes, when kayaking, I'll run from the takeout back up to the car for my workout. I do it for the sense of accomplishment. That's what makes me enjoy life: looking back knowing I charged as hard as I could that week. It makes beer and food taste better.

RLX Hooded Cardigan ($395; ralphlauren.com); Emporio Armani EA7 pants ($175; emporioarmani.com); Nike Air Rejuven8 shoes ($90; nike.com)

Tim Hola

The Fittest Real Men in America

Tim Hola
Tim Hola

TIM HOLA, 33, HIGHLANDS RANCH, COLORADO
Hola, a pharmaceutical representative for Sanofi-Aventis, is one of the best amateur triathletes in America. He's a nine-time finisher at the Ironman World Championship, in Hawaii (best result: 43rd overall and fifth American, in 2006), the 2005 U.S. Half Triathlon Champion, and the father of 21-month-old twins.

Since my sons were born, I've had to find more creative ways to get my workouts done. I keep everything I need for my workouts in my car so I can do them wherever I happen to be, without going home first. I get up early and sometimes ride at night for an hour or so on my indoor bike trainer so I can be home with my wife, Nikki, and the kids. Nikki is an athlete, too. When I ride my trainer at home in the evening, she often rides hers with me. It's great quality time. We also put the kids in baby joggers or bike trailers and incorporate them into our biking and running. Don't assume you have to stay with that template of "eat dinner, wind down, and go to bed." If you have the passion, you'll find a way.

C9 by Champion Power Core Tee ($18; target=.com); DKNY Mockneck Jacket ($125; dkny.com); Victorinox X-Static Hooded Jacket ($1,495, with a rechargeable-battery­-powered heating system; swissarmy.com); John Varvatos Star USA Filmore jeans ($198; johnvarvatos.com); Adidas Scorch Microbounce+ shoes ($100; shopadidas.com)

Rickey Gates

The Fittest Real Men in America

Rickey Gates
Rickey Gates

RICKEY GATES, 27, BOULDER, COLORADO
In June 2007, without the help of a coach or even a training watch, Gates won the USA Mountain Running Championship and then, a week later, the USA Trail Running Championship, beating the top American pros in the sport. He's also on his feet more than 40 hours a week as a fine-dining waiter and bartender at the Little Nell, in Aspen, and Frasca Food and Wine, in Boulder.

I'm glad I work a job where my priority is running, and I can do that first and go wait tables second. I run 40 to 70 miles a week, high intensity. It's the reason I enjoy running—that I go fast out there. It's the closest I come to Zen. And then moving around on my feet for eight hours a day, it's training in a way, like doing a double workout. When it comes down to it, a 40-hour workweek leaves a whole lot of time to train. I have a pretty scaled-down life. Get rid of television and life becomes pretty simple. It's not a matter of making time; it's a way to live your life.

DKNY Zip Thru Mockneck ($275; dkny.com); Moncler Austin jacket ($1,050; moncler.com); Levi's Capital E Eco Hesher ($192; levisstore.com); Sperry Gradiant shoes ($70; sperrytopsider.com)

Shadd Smith

The Fittest Real Men in America

Shadd Smith
Shadd Smith

SHADD SMITH, 36, OVERLAND PARK, KANSAS
Smith logs 40 to 50 hours a week as a vaccine sales rep for Merck & Co., and he and his wife are raising two young boys. But he's also a Category 1 cyclist who regularly shuts down pros in road, mountain-bike, and cyclocross races. He placed third in the three-day 2007 Tour of Kansas City road race and stood on the podium 43 times out of the 63—yes, 63—events he entered last year

I bust out and ride anytime I can find a hole in my schedule. I've never looked at it like training, ever. Riding is my release. So if I'm too busy during the day, I'll bike at night to make sure I hit my target= of 250 miles per week. I don't have more than 30 hours to ride each week, so if I have a big comp coming up, I just do harder and more focused rides wherever I can around my job. My wife, Trina, and I both work from home, so we trade off responsibilities depending on our schedules. It's the only way we can keep this whole ship floating.

Puma Complete Active Short Sleeve Shirt ($30; puma.com); DKNY Crewneck with Pocket ($175; dkny.com); Quiksilver Performance 5K Jacket ($180; quiksilver.com); RLX Sapiens Vest ($295; ralphlauren.com); Calvin Klein's Dylan pants ($88; calvinklein.com); Timberland Jardims Moc Toe Chukka shoes ($85; timberland.com); Tissot T-Trax watch ($450; tissot.ch)

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