One of Americaâ€™s premiere ultra-marathoners, Scott Jurek holds the U.S. record for running the farthest in a 24-hour span: 165.7 miles or about 6.3 marathons. Heâ€™s also vegan, and in Eat & Run, Jurekâ€™s new autobiography, he details not only his running life, but also his diet. We asked him how itâ€™s possible to run so far, so quickly, and still watch what you eat.
- Q: When did your interest in food arise?
- A: My mother was a 1970s Betty Crocker-type cook, pot roast, pork chops, you name it. Later on, maybe when I was about seven, I had to cook for her and my family when she started having the effects of MS. Iâ€™d always helped my grandmother make bread, harvested vegetables and fried up the fish we caught, but this made me realize the importance of nutrition.
- Q: Sounds like youâ€™re from a pretty rural background. Was your family hip to you changing your diet?
- A: I still go back for family gatherings and my aunts and uncles are blown away: â€œYou donâ€™t eat meat?!â€ My dadâ€™s more receptive, he understands it, but at the beginning it was, you know, â€œYou still eat chicken, right?â€
- Q: What first encouraged you to change how you eat?
- A: It wasnâ€™t a light bulb as much as a continual shift, but the first thing was seeing disease in the family and my experience with my mom. Later, I was training as a physical therapist and spending time in hospitals and seeing what the patients ate and I began to consider nutrition. I read about how other cultures ate less meat and more plants and it struck a chord â€” this is what health is about.
- Q: How does it coincide with your running?
- A: It was a huge mental obstacle and before the first Western States ultra-marathon, it was daunting. I started to doubt myself about a week before the race â€” maybe I shouldâ€™ve eaten protein? But once I got over that mental hurdle, I realized I was making a shift in my entire body. I felt more energetic, recovery times were better and I lost about 10 or 15 pounds; I now have definition in my muscles that I didnâ€™t have in college.
- Q: And what were you eating in college?
- A: Whoppers and cheese balls, your basic college stuff.
- Q: Do you ever miss eating pot roast and pork chops?
- A: For someone who hated vegetables as kid, an adolescent, as a teenager and throughout college, itâ€™s funny, but I really donâ€™t feel like Iâ€™m denying myself. Iâ€™m trying new things and letting my taste buds experience new flavours. Itâ€™s a fun journey â€” challenging at times, like in airports, rural diners and family gatherings â€” and my results show that Iâ€™m living proof that you can eat this way and succeed as a runner.
â€”Eat & RunÂ by Scott Jurek is published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Here are some of the books that related with healthy diet and training, includeÂ Eat & Run.Â Check this out.Â
[vsw id=”eHsXSkuVeuI” source=”youtube” width=”525″ height=”425″ autoplay=”no”]
[vsw id=”2Zp0LCm9BWI” source=”youtube” width=”525″ height=”425″ autoplay=”no”]
- United States record for 24-hour distance on all surfacesÂ (165.7 Miles/266.01 Kilometers)
- Won theÂ SpartathlonÂ 152-mile (245km) race from Athens to Sparta, Greece three consecutive times (2006-2008)
- Won theÂ Hardrock Hundred Mile Endurance Run, and held the record time for one year until Kyle Skaggs set a new record in 2008
- Won theÂ Western States Endurance RunÂ seven consecutive times (1999-2005), and held the record time (15:36:27 in 2004) until 2010
- Won theÂ Badwater UltramarathonÂ twice (2005, 2006), and held the course record for two years (2005)
- Finished first three times (2002-2004) and second three times (2001, 2005, 2006) in theÂ Miwok 100K Trail Race
- Won theÂ Leona Divide 50 Mile RunÂ four times (2000, 2001, 2002, 2004)
- Won theÂ Diez Vista 50K Trail RunÂ twice (2000, 2003)
- Won theÂ montrail Ultra Cup seriesÂ twice (2000, 2003)
- Selected asÂ UltraRunning Magazine’s North American Male Ultrarunner of the YearÂ in 2003, 2004, 2005, and 2007
- 100 Mile Trail: 15:36, Western States Endurance Run 2004
- 100K Road: 7:28, GNC 100K 2001
- 50 Mile Trail: 6:21, Ice Age 50 Mile 1999
- 50 Mile Road: 5:50, GNC 2001
- 50K Trail: 3:04, Bendistillery 50K 1999
- 26.2 Mile Road Marathon: 2:38, Austin Marathon 2006