Ultrarunner Jeff Browning grew up on a 700-acre farm in Missouri, where running through the woods was a favorite childhood hobby. Since then, he’s taken running to new lengths, becoming one of the most successful and longest-lasting 100-mile racers in the country. This fall, at the age of 46, he won the Bear 100 race in Logan, Utah. “In a fast-paced, high-tech, always-connected society, trail running offers a moment to unplug and reconnect with wild places,” says the Bend, Oregon, resident, who also works as an online endurance coach and freelance graphic designer. We asked Browning for the everyday possessions he uses most.
"I never travel without Pro-Tec’s The Orb 5-inch foam roller ball. It fits nicely into a corner of my carry-on bag. Due to the size and shape, you can get deep into your glutes and hips, where a normal cylinder-shaped roller can’t reach. It’s perfect for a runner’s chronically tight hips and low back, especially if you sit on the job."
"I’m a firm believer in the use of essential oils, and Rocky Mountain Essential Oil True Blue is always on my bathroom counter or in my travel kit. Add a drop to coconut oil and massage it into sore muscles and joints."
"Goal Zero’s Flip 10 portable charger is another travel staple in my carry-on bag and backcountry running adventures. It provides a very quick, single charge, and it’s compact and light. I also carry it on backcountry adventures for charging my phone when I’m using it as a GPS device."
"I avoid chemical-based cleaners and soaps, especially if they have antibacterial chemicals in them. Most public bathrooms offer antibacterial soap, so I always carry a small bottle of Dr. Bronner’s liquid soap. Just be sure to put it in a small Ziplock to avoid leakage."
"Since I follow a paleo lifestyle, I avoid grains and sugar in my everyday diet. This is challenging when traveling, especially on longer flights. I always pack my own food in my carry-on, and Trail Butter is always in my bag for a quick snack. I grab an apple and squeeze some Trail Butter onto it for a delicious, healthy, grain-free snack on the move. I also use this on long, all-day adventures for an easy-to-carry, calorically-dense natural food. Keep some in your vehicle for a great post-run snack on the way home from the trailhead."
"I live in a mountain town and Patagonia’s Fjord Flannel is my favorite shirt. Glance over my Instagram feed and you’ll see most casual photos involve a flannel. It’s made with organic, heavyweight cotton flannel, soft and perfect for layering with a merino wool base layer in the winter or nothing under it for cool summer evenings in the mountains."
If you told me I could only wear one shoe for everything, it would be Altra Lone Peak 3.5. It's a mid-cushion shoe with Altra's signature foot-shaped toe box and zero-drop which lets your foot function naturally. I use my old retired versions for yard work and hiking with my family."