Keep It Up
Ultrarunning ambassador Dean Karnazes shares his secrets for going, going, going
For exclusive access to all of our fitness, gear, adventure, and travel stories, plus discounts on trips, events, and gear, sign up for Outside+ today.
1. Stay Connected: I let my family and friends track my position with the Bones in Motion software [from $6 a month; bimactive.com]. It syncs with my GPS-enabled cell phone and posts my real-time position, mileage, pace, and elevation gain on the Internet. They sometimes show up in the middle of nowhere to join me.
2. Double Your Light: I carry two lights when I’m night running, especially outside the city. I wear a Petzl Tikka XP headlamp [$50; petzl.com] and carry a Princeton Tec Impact XL flashlight [$38; princetontec.com]. That way I can move my head around and still light my path with my handheld. I’ve found Energizer’s e2 lithiums burn brighter and operate better in extreme temperatures.
3. Eat What Works: On longer runs, I follow a see-food diet. (I see food and I eat it.) Calorie-dense foods like granola, trail mix, and nuts are a mainstay. My all-time favorite concoction is an almond-butter-banana sandwich on whole-grain bread, with ample honey inside and soy sauce drizzled on the outside for sodium.
4. Mix Well: I run twice a day. I’ve found that revving up my metabolism that often seems to provide greater aerobic benefit and faster post-workout recovery, so my body adapts to the load more quickly. I also do Bikram yoga, mountain biking, surfing, and resistance training. Variety prevents injuries.
5. Heal Naturally: I like to recover as naturally as possible. I don’t use ibuprofen or Tylenol, because I worry that it exacerbates injuries. A 30x-potency extract of Arnica montana flower is a good homeopathic treatment for muscle soreness. It’s very mellow. I take three tablets, three times a day.
An Ounce of Prevention
Levi Leipheimer, America's top cyclist, explains how to make sure your bike never slows you down
1. Never Let Your Tread Wear Out: Replace your tires frequently. With fresher rubber, you’ll have fewer flats and also a better-handling bike.
2. Regularly Inspect Your Tires: Sometimes you’ll come back from a ride with small bits of glass or debris embedded in the outer casing. If you habitually clean this stuff off, it won’t have a chance to work through the tire.
3. Same Goes for Your Chain: Keep it clean and lubed and your bike will shift, and look, better. I use T-9 bike lube [4 oz, $8; boeshield.com] for dry weather and Tri-Flow Superior [2 oz, $5; triflowlubricants.com] in wet conditions. And if you replace your chain before it gets too worn out, you’ll save the expense of having to fix or replace pricier items like cassettes and chainrings, which suffer increased wear and tear from old chains.
4. Buy a Torque Wrench: I have one from Syntace [from $166; syntace.com] that’s very cool. Modern bike components are made of expensive materials like carbon and titanium and highly engineered to save weight. But that also means they can be damaged by overtightening. Manufacturers test their products and provide torque recommendations. Make sure you follow them.
5. Find a Good Local Bike Shop and Mechanic, and Be Loyal: The more familiar they become with your bike and your riding style, the more able they’ll be to keep everything working to your liking.
Acclaimed French photographer Frédéric Lagrange distills wisdom gleaned while roving the world
1. Follow Your Heart: The more you give in to passion, the more it gives back. Go to places with rich histories, places to which you feel intrinsically tied. It’s important to feel strongly for a place, to understand the history and its effect on people. I’m fascinated with Asia. My whole soul is just attracted to it. I spend six to eight months a year traveling and I always make the East a priority.
2. Stay on the Move: Whenever I travel, I take two medium-format Pentax 6×7’s [made 196975; check eBay and Craigslist] with meone black-and-white, the other color. I have about ten of them at home. They break pretty easily, but I love them. I’ve been shooting with this camera since I started taking photos, seven years ago. It’s lightweight, and the lighter you are, the freer you are.
3. Composition Is Key: Shots need to be well balanced, but contrast is more of a style choice. When you start shooting, you need to shoot and shoot. You need to look at your own work and make sure it meets your own expectations. Don’t compare your work with anyone else’s. It’s art; it’s subjective.
4. Go Before It’s Gone: See rapidly changing places like Mongolia. The Soviets left in 1989, and the country has been advancing ever since. The evolution has been incredible. It’s upgrading, improving, and trying to catch up with the pace of the rest of the world. Mongolians are becoming westernized. The countryside is changing, too. It’ll be gone soon.
5. Ditch the Sidekick: I love to travel with my girlfriend, but when I work, I go by myself. I’m more open and observant. I take more chances and become more involved in the culture.
Some helpful backcountry tips from mountaineering guru Conrad Anker
1. Acclimatize and Exercise: I do a bit of exercise every day so my body gets used to the challenges of the elevation. Just light exercise. Don’t go out and bench-press your weight, but walk around and stretch a bit. It shouldn’t be too taxing, but it’s important to keep moving so your body doesn’t coagulate so much.
2. Watch Your Step: I’m a borderline fanatic about my feet. I wash them almost every other day on expeditions with soap and hot water, and then I wash them again with hand sanitizer to make sure all the germs between my toes are killed. I let them air-dry completely and then slather them with Burt’s Bees moisturizer [$9; burtsbees.com]. I duct-tape blisters, and I wear one pair of socks, not two.
3. Tune In (and Out): Music has a time and a place. I’ve seen people listening to their iPods while walking through the Khumbu Icefall, and I tell them to take them off immediately. Mountaineering is dangerousyou need to be able to listen to your team and to the snow.
4. Keep It Clean: It’s important to keep a clean environment when you’re living in a tent for a month. One way to do that is to pack a small sponge to wipe water condensation off the floor. On winter expeditions, I shake the floor so ice breaks up, and then I scoop it outside with my hands.
5. Filter Carefully: I use the old standby Katadyn Pocket ceramic water filter [$240; katadyn.com]. It’s virtually foolproof and incredibly strong. There’s no bad aftertaste, either. Unlike SteriPENs and iodine pills, it takes the grit and gunk out of the water, and it’s more environmentally sensitive than using fuel to boil it.
Rising star Dane Reynolds sheds some light on everyday surfing
1. Know Before You Go: I check the surf reports at a couple of Web sites when I’m on the road: BuoyWeather.com gives accurate reports for worldwide surf, and WetSand.com gives the best reports for Southern California.
2. Feeling Cramped? Surf Bad Waves: I go to mediocre spots to avoid the crowds. I don’t mind having bad waves if it means that I can catch a lot of them. Waiting in a big crowd of people, where everybody’s psyched and yellingman, that’s irritating. Being able to get away from that should be cherished.
3. Be Vigilant: Take mental notes and take it slow at a new surf spot. It doesn’t hurt to sit in the channel and observe where there is a boil or a rock. It’s good to be aware of your surroundings.
4. Put Your Boots On: We have a lot of river runoff here in SoCal, and your wax can get pretty slick. Even if it’s warm out, I wear booties so I stick to my board.
5. Do You Really Need a Roof Rack? I drive the smallest car you can have for carrying as many surfboards as I do. It’s a Subaru Forester [from $21,200; subaru.com]. I fold down the backseats and stack six or seven boards in there. But I live near the beach, so I try to commute by skateboard. [He rides a Plan B Danny Way. From $55; planbskateboards.com.]