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Archive for the ‘Events’ Category

Is Running an Individualistic Sport?

Wednesday, July 1st, 2015

An old boss of mine once said that he doesn’t hire people that didn’t play team sports before, to that I say, “Running is an individualistic team sport.” The Peachtree Road Race is coming up in a couple of days here in Atlanta and runners from around the world are coming to participate in the relatively small purse based on the hours runners put in to prepare for the race. Some of them it will be the race of their lives. Some of them know they will be out there running with their team trying to help their top runner win the race much like a Nascar race team drafting and pushing each other in the top position.

World's Largest 10k


So what makes these runners travel so far to run in the World’s Largest 10k? Are they doing it for themselves, for their country, or for their team?

There is a perseverance and intestinal fortitude that comes with pushing your body to the limit within your own mind, but do you do it all on your own? What about the people clapping and cheering you on? What about the other runners that you run next to, behind, and pass? Don’t they help you win your own race? It takes 100,000 people to make it the world’s largest 10k with many people running to run their personal 4th of July best. Some are running to run with their friends and family.

Whatever your motivation may be, you know that you aren’t running this race by yourself. You have all the help in the world as you beat your feet one foot at a time, one foot in front of another. Listen to the cheers and look around you as your running family flows you to the finish line.

Happy 4th of July and run like the wind with the crowd to your back and the sounds moving through your ears!


Georgia runner to run XTERRA National Championships

Monday, September 16th, 2013

Deanna McCurdy of Peachtree City will be joining 700 other runners in the XTERRA National Championships this weekend. Deanna is running in support of Team Miles for Smiles, a Foundation for Angelman Syndrome Therapeutics, or F.A.S.T. Her youngest daughter is diagnosed with the disease. Those effected are born missing a segment of their 15th chromosome on the maternal side and require life long care.

Deanna placed 1st in the XTERRA Deep South Trail Run 15k (no big deal, right?) that she described as really, “a way to have a date with my husband, we were going to go mountain biking after I ran the race.” Sounds like a tough woman. But don’t be afraid, Deanna just has perceptive from raising a child affected by Angelman Syndrome. Her running mantra is, “I run because I can. When I get tired I just remember those who can’t run and what they would give to have this simple gift I take for granted and I run harder for them. I know they would do the same for me.” Deanna wears a blue reminder bracelet and friendship bracelet in support of Foundation of Angelman Syndrome and a friendship bracelet is from her 8 year old daughter.

Deanna says that when their daughter was born it turned their world updside down. The fact that you don’t know when “someday is” makes you jump on every opportunity if it presents itself.

What’s unique about Deanna’s foundation is that a cure doesn’t seem in a distance future, it’s being tested successfully and a cure could become imminent. 1 out of 15,000 children have the disease but Deanna says that many more may be prevalent in mis-diagnosis as autism or cerebral palsy.

If you want to support Deanna, her race, and the foundation, please visit their site at

5 Reasons to not slow down at any Finish Line

Tuesday, September 10th, 2013

There are many examples in sports where a competitor prematurely celebrates or “lets up” at the last second turning what appears to be great success to embarrassing failure.  In the NFL season opener on September 5th between the Denver Broncos and Baltimore Ravens, Danny Trevathan purposefully dropped a Joe Flacco intercepted pass at what turned out to be inches before he crossed the goal line to celebrate.  What appeared to be a Denver touchdown quickly turned into a Baltimore first down.  In the August Ironman 70.3 Brazil race, Jérémy Jurkiewicz of France stopped short of the finish to celebrate his victory and literally had to push back Brazil’s Igor Amorelli only inches from the tape to grab the win.  This calls for a look at 5 Great Reasons for NOT slowing down at the finish line!

Finish the Drill

Several sports teams including the University of Georgia football team have adopted “Finish the Drill” as their slogan.  There is great satisfaction both mentally and physically when we complete a race knowing that we left absolutely nothing on the trail.  I feel great knowing I gave it my best shot and I feel lousy knowing I held back ….regardless of my excuse.

Cameras Keep Rolling as Time Keeps Ticking

There is always at least one camera rolling and the footage is hard to refute especially when there are multiple angles.  Those computer chips don’t lie so slowing up at the finish is hard to refute even when the argument is between you and yourself.  After the race, look in the mirror and feel confident telling yourself that you ran through the finish and not to the finish.

It Makes No Sense to Come Up Short

Whether the race is 100 meters or a marathon, giving it your best shot for 99% of the race only to let up at the finish makes no sense.  We have all seen it happen to others but we don’t think it can happen to us.  It can.  It takes both mental and physical toughness to avoid coming up short.  Winners never quit and quitters never win.

You May Get a Big Surprise

I was fortunate enough to be the anchor on my college mile relay team my sophomore year in a dual meet with our arch rival.  We were 1 point ahead going into the final event meaning the winner of the mile relay event would win the dual meet.  Unfortunately their mile relay team was far superior as evidenced by their sweep of the open 400.  Surprisingly their leadoff man lost control of his baton coming out of the blocks!  Baton retrieval was costly however the gap had disappeared by the time the anchor legs made their exchanges.  We went stride for stride through the backstretch. Their anchor patiently waited to make his move.  I just knew I had him beat until I hit the tape and caught a glimpse of him hitting the tape at the same time.  I had no idea he was that close!  First place judge picked me.  Second place judge picked me too.  The points were split and we miraculously won the meet.  I swear I did not “let up” but if I had “let up” no way I would have admitted it.

Your Pain Will be Even Greater After the Race If You Let Up

That inner voice may tell us that we have run a long and hard race and no one will ever know if we let up just before the finish or celebrate those last few steps.  That is no one will know but us.  Truth is the “pain” saved by the “let up” in no way compares to the pain of coming up short especially when a competitor passes us up at the finish line.  Don’t take the risk.  Run through the finish in every race both on and off the trail.

SeriousRunning Partners

Tuesday, August 27th, 2013

We’re seeking partnerships with race directors of trail running, dualthalons, and adventure race events. SeriousRunning, established in 2008, is expanding beyond trail running to include adventure racing. SeriousRunning has the largest database of running trails across the US and has been listing  endurance events for over 6 years.

Any adventure or trail race event would be an ideal partner. We’ve done promotional blog posts in the past for XTERRA races and Spartan Race. If you’d like to learn more or have your race featured, please email me, Chris Barber at

We’re also offering internships for military Veterans in digital marketing and Internet businesses. SeriousRunning is run by battle buddies, Chris Barber and Brian Ansley. We worked together in Iraq and are both passionate about helping other Veterans make a smooth transition to civilian life.

Reebok Spartan Race Partners with NBC Sports Group to bring Adventure Racing to Television!

Thursday, August 8th, 2013

Barb Wire Crawl

I knew they would eventually do it, Spartan Race is now going to be televised! I recently got interested in Spartan Race because of the close ties to the military type obstacles and military style exercises it takes to complete these gnarly obstacle courses.

Why so gnarly you ask? Because it was started by a Royal Marine who’s first race direction didn’t have a waiver and he named it Death Race. That’s gnarlesbarkley and why I can’t wait to watch the World Championships on NBC. Think World’s Strongest Man in an Octagon with a lot of mud and barbed wire. Plus a lot of grunting, yelling, and relentless opposition. You have to want to finish this race. This is death, not your Mom’s tough, muddy adventure race. (disclaimer: I love my Mother and all Moms, tough or mudlike)

NBC will be airing the 2013 Reebok Spartan Race World Championship featuring athletes competing for $250k cash & prizes! That’s crazy! I wonder how much Usain Bolt gets paid to run? I bet it’s not as much as Jay-Z gets paid by Reebok to land in Europe.

This is revolutionary for the Sport of Adventure Racing and I’m excited to be a part of it happening. Spartan Race is also doing a 90 minute special on the athletes competing that will feature those whom have overcome other types of obstacles through running. My battle buddy, Brian Ansley, and I have both experienced difficult transitions to civilian life and we both agree exercise is key, that’s why we’re doing SeriousRunning together and why we dig what Spartan Race is doing. It’s good for all Veterans to have battle buddies.

You should sign up if you want to put your body through physical pain and intestinal fortitude training. Your body will recover, but your mind will never be the same. Show Spartan Race who’s mentally tougher, you or some former Royal Marine dude.

And watch the special on the athletes on NBC. Maybe you’ll see Ansley…

Welcome to the Heist. #Macklemore

Brian Ansley – Adventure Racer Joins SeriousRunning

Thursday, August 1st, 2013

Barb Wire Crawl

My name is Brian Ansley, and I’m a former United States Army paratrooper with the 82nd Airborne Division.  I did two tours of duty conducting combat missions in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom for a total of 27 months.  Once I became a veteran, I realized that I needed to fill the lack of excitement that the civilian world recurrently brings to the table. I started doing road races, triathlons, and duathlons in 2010. In 2011, I became very serious about racing and eventually began running at the Ultra Marathon level.   In addition to traditional-style endurance races, I also began to run obstacle races. I qualified for the Spartan Race World Championship! Get $10 off, Use Code: SPEAR10 – Sign Up Now!, and placed in 14 additional races in the state of Texas throughout the year. 

In my free time I enjoy lifting weights, running, kayaking, hiking, and pretty much anything outdoors.  I also still remain true to my military roots, and continue to do military-style workouts on a weekly basis.  Much of my military-style workouts include a very intense pushup and pull-up workout, as well as ruck marches to strengthen both my lower and upper body.  In the past few years, I have really focused on my diet and what I put into my body.  I eat all organic foods, and stay away from genetically modified organisms (GMO’s) and preservatives.  I don’t follow any one specific diet plan, but I do try to minimize the amount of processed foods and grains that eat.

SeriousRunning has provided me with an exceptional opportunity to share the things that I love to do. My interaction with like-minded endurance athletes, veterans, and highly motivated individuals is an invaluable instrument to help others, as well as myself, to reach new levels of physical and mental toughness.

Internet Marketing Internships for Military Veterans

Monday, July 15th, 2013

I want to help military Veterans get outstanding employment in the civilian world. I think our military Veterans are currently the United States’s best resource and can make a deep impact. The problem is that military Veterans just don’t have the right skills for today’s economy. It used to be that a “business manager” was a viable career path, but that’s no longer the case in our hyper-digitized society, everyone must not only be able to manage, but also create value with individual skillsz.

I got lucky. I had a brother that introduced me to technology and the Internet early on. I want to pass that luck to other military Veterans.

The first person I’m going to help is Eddie. Eddie has 23 years military service, is a SFC in the Army, and is preparing himself for the civilian world by taking classes in web design at night. He’s using the post 9-11 Bill to pay for it. I used the post 9-11 Bill myself to pay for (a very small portion) of my MBA at Emory University in Atlanta. I’m going to give Eddie some projects to work on for SeriousRunning and National Trail Running Day and connect him to industry professionals.

I’m also going to work with Justin. He was in the Marines for 4 years and is currently in the Army guard. He has a job that allows him a lot of free time in front of a computer so he’s going to try to write a couple of articles and learn how to create quality online content. He can then use these skills writing other sites like He’s interested in trying adventure racing but he just needs the shoes to take that first step. I’ve got plenty of extra shoes and I can only wear one pair at a time so I’ll help him make that first step.

If you are a Veteran and are interested in learning more about the Internet business please feel free to email me at Those two examples are real people that are beginning an Internship now.

Areas of study:

Social Media

Blog Writing

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Email Marketing

Event Marketing

Digital Marketing

Social Media Marketing

Online Advertising


Google Adwords

Google Analytics

Potential perks include free race entries, gear, and marketable skillz. Plus doing fun, extreme stuff like XTERRA adventure races.

Requirements are that you must commit to 10 hours per week and 1 weekly phone lesson. Please simply send an email describing yourself and what you are interested in to No resumes please. Internships are open now and will last until November 1st.

Happy Trails!


Co-founder & CEO

SeriousRunning & National Trail Running Day

SeriousRunning back in bizness.

Monday, July 15th, 2013

SeriousRunning is back in business. The business of getting back in shape. After 20 years of competitive running, I had to stop due to injury. After MRIs, physical therapy, and a variety of treatments, I gave up on cardio exercise for the past 1.5 years. After trying all of these remedies, my doctor’s final advice was, “Just stop running.” I was devastated.

Running is what I had been doing my whole life. As long as I can walk, I want to run. Recently I got a doctor’s 2nd opinion, the prognosis: “You’ve over worked your running muscles, stop running….but do do any other fitness activities.” So I’m back and ready for my next challenge baby! I guess I’ll just have to be more careful about my only weakness, that I work too much…

I thought my knee issues stemmed from jumping out of airplanes in the 82nd Airborne Division or maybe from “taking a knee” too many times in Iraq, but I think I just overworked my running muscles. I’ve learned the importance of cross-training and plan to give myself a trail triatholon race goal instead of purely a run. I love to trail run, running will always be my passion, it’s what I’m best at, but we learn and grow by challenging ourselves in new ways. I will be competing in the XTERRA World Championships.

I started SeriousRunning with my brother, Jeff Barber, in 2008, and at that time trail running, adventure racing, and XTERRA began gaining popularity. I ran many of the XTERRA trail races and wrote about them here. I started National Trail Running Day in 2009 and had thousands of participants in the inaugural year. 2013 date TBD.

I want to come back from this injury, accomplish my goals, and prove to myself that “I’ve still got it.”

Hope you enjoy my efforts. I also plan to improve this site, please feel free to send me a message at Happy Trails!

The newest obstacle race to land in the US, The Battle Run

Friday, December 7th, 2012


The newest obstacle race, The Battle Run coming to Atlanta.  Check it out and see if you are up to the test.

The Battle Run is a military themed obstacle and mud race that will challenge you in ways you never thought possible.  With challenging and sometimes frightening  obstacles, The Battle Run will force you to face your fears, rely on the people in the trenches with you, and push you further than you ever thought you were capable of going.  I’ve been in the Army and there are a lot of things I couldn’t have done without the help of others.  Sounds like a great concept to teach teamwork in the individualistic sport of running.  It’ll be interesting to see who works together and who leaves their comrades behind.

According to the race director Cameron, “Your athleticism will be tested.  Your mental resolve will be crushed.  You will be broken and battered until nothing but a hardened, battle ready, monster remains.”

The Pitch:  Do you have what it takes?  Register for The Battle Run and find out! The first stop on The Battle Trail is Atlanta, GA on August 3rd, 2013.  The exact location is yet to be announced but negotiations are underway with a very special venue  Registration for this event is now open and details can be found at  There you can register and use coupon code FIRSTINLASTOUT for a short time to receive $10 your registration.  Other discounts include military 50% off, Emergency Medical Service Professional $10 off, Students 10% off and Team Registration $10 off.  Visit the website and register today for the time of your life that will surely reveal what you’re made of!

Taos Ski Valley Up and Over Trail Run Race Recap

Monday, July 16th, 2012

This year’s Taos Ski Valley Up and Over Trail Run is scheduled for Saturday August, 25th at 9 am.  Nancy Hobb’s tells us about her experience at the race.  Think you can handle it?  Then Register.

Imagine standing at a race start line, looking upward, and seeing only the first 1/4 mile of the race course because the trail bends around the back side of a ski mountain and the summit is so far above you that it is not visible from the base of the mountain.

It is with trepidation perhaps, or maybe excitement, or even dread, to consider a climb of more than 2,600 feet in three miles before reaching the halfway point in a race course. Once the initial shock is over—the climb of course—it’s all downhill.

Getting back to the climb…think rocky, unstable footing, no shade, lack of oxygen, gut-busting steepness, heavy breathing and even some gasps and groans from the effort. Oh, but the views! Incredible if taking the time to enjoy them. Me, I was dizzy from the elevation gain and had no plans to stop. Why? Competition. There were two women ahead of me. A top-three place finish was great considering how I was feeling on the uphill, yet I knew if I could just maintain, I could pick up time on the descent and maybe make up some time and a place…or two.

Before the race I estimated about 12-14 minute miles on the uphill, 7 minutes per mile on the descent. I figured this after looking at a tiny ski-trail map of the Taos Ski area online and judging how long it took me a few weeks prior to run to the top of Vail Mountain on a similar elevation gain over three miles.

For me, it’s a bit about planning. Some people don’t care about the course, the terrain, or the competition, they just show up and run. I like to know all of these elements of the race plus what the weather is going to be on race morning, where the restrooms are, what the trail looks like just beyond the start line, what the approach to the finish line looks like, and everything in between. If possible, I like to run part, or all of the course before I race. Certainly not practical when arriving the night before the race.

Of the 31 runners on race morning, Saturday, August 25, for the Taos Ski Valley Up and Over 10k Trail Run, only a few decided to stand on the start line. Trepidation perhaps. Starting at 9,207 feet with 2,612 feet of elevation gain looming. Trepidation for sure, if not dread.

We got some last minute instructions about the course and were informed that there would be no countdown to the start, we were to just “go” after we heard a gun shot. Of course no one knew when the gun shot would come so we nervously waited with our fingers on our chronographic watches. Somehow I was in second place right from the start and I was taking it easy. Only one fellow took off in the lead and he, like many rabbits, became a turtle as the race went on. I made the first switchback turn and slowly approached the second before a few men passed me. A woman I spoke with at the start then surged past me in the first 1/2 mile. Her name was “Tas” I later learned and she had run the race last year, in the first year of the event. At the start she told me that it took her about 1:10 to 1:12 to race it—so I guessed she was probably last year’s winner since the organizer told me the women’s winning time for 2006 was 1:12. She would be my competition along with another woman I saw warming up at the start who just “looked fast.”

I settled into what I felt was a comfortable, yet oxygen-deprived, 12+ minute pace and a solid top-10 position which I hoped to keep up for the duration of the climb. Consistent pace is what I suggest to runners for this type of event. “Get into a gear that you know you can sustain for the duration of a climb,” is my best advice.

There would be three aid stations on the course, one halfway to the top, another at the summit, and a third at about the 4.5 mile point. When I looked at my watch and saw 25 minutes at the first aid station, I knew that my 12 minute pace was a fleeting dream and I was hoping now to go under 50 minutes on the climb.

The second woman passed me somewhere along the climb before that first aid station, she was the one who “looked fast” as she warmed up at the start. I could see her just ahead of me for the rest of the climb and I figured if I could just keep her in my sights, I could catch her — just maybe — on the descent. Considering how I was feeling toward the top—dizzy, unsteady, depleted, tired—that dream was in jeopardy of becoming rather distant as well. I managed a sub 50 minute ascent so that invigorated me…sort of.

It is amazing how cresting the top of a climb can change your attitude rather quickly. Just three miles to go and all downhill. This is my kind of running.

Tas was right, it was steep…and rocky. The speedy second-place woman was just ahead of me tiptoeing down the mountain. I blasted past her and she yelled out, “You go sister!” Inspiration for sure.

The descent was my strength, but the pounding was pretty intense and the footing was a bit treacherous in spots. I even had to slow down in several sections and amend my seven-minute pace accordingly. I passed the final water stop and knew I still had a mile or so to go. It was fairly solitary running, much like many trail races that have small fields and are also rather challenging. I saw one other runner ahead of me on the trail whom I thought I would catch, but didn’t, and heard no one behind me.

There were no spectators on course save for the aid stations and a few supporters who hiked up from the finish line to cheer on their friends, which also adds to the solitary nature of trail racing. When I saw some supporters near the finish line they urged me on saying that I only had 1/2 mile to the finish line. It was a bit longer than that, but close enough to ramp up my pace a bit.

I crossed the line in 1:13:05, good enough for second woman and sixth overall. Pleased to be in the top ten, second among the women, and equally pleased that we top-three women were all in our 40s.

The race awards ceremony started after everyone had crossed the finish line and post-race chatter was well underway. Every participant received a coupon for lunch with their race entry. Lunch, along with a cute T-shirt and some great swag made the nearly four-hour drive from Colorado Springs more than worthwhile. Add great volunteer support, and this low-key, small town event is a must-do mountain race for your August racing calendar.

Article by Nancy Hobbs from