Interview Ragnar finisher Gerald Poole

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SGPT: Tell us about yourself?

GP: I’m a 40 year old husband and father of two awesome boys, Patrick (almost 3 years old), and T.J. (two and a half months old). I work as a consultant in leadership, strategy and project management.

SGPT: Did you have an athletic background growing up?

GP: Somewhat. I was always an active kid, playing soccer and tennis. Athletics weren’t a focus however.

SGPT: How did you train for the Ragnar event?

GP: I ran, ran and ran some more. This was a long-distance running event. I also train by performing Freak Frogman workouts, Sealfit workouts and I practice BJJ. Then there’s the mental training you do when you know you can’t possibly replicate the difficulty of the entire event, nor can you replicate many of the other factors. For example, I can train while I’m tired, but I can’t stay up for 36 hours and then practice my last run.

SGPT: Tell us a little about the event? Where was it?

GP: RAGNAR is a relay race of over 200 miles. You team up with 11 other people. Everyone has three legs of varying lengths and difficulty. This one was in Minnesota this past weekend. However, there are several events across the United States.

SGPT: What was the hardest part of the event?

GP: It’s a tough course. I went over 36 hours without sleep, logged over 20 miles and had to contend with a heat index of well over 100 degrees. Also, I had spent the night prior to the event at Urgent Care. Turns out I had an ear infection, and that didn’t help matters. Last time I had one of those what about 35 years ago!

SGPT: What is one thing you wish you would have done to get ready for Ragnar?

GP: I wish I had trained more running up steep gravel roads for long distances.

SGPT: Any tips for up and coming athletes that want to do the Ragnar event?

GP: Perform lots of hill work, train while fresh and fatigued, and understand how to minimize dehydration. Drink lots of water, but understand there is such a thing as too much. Know how your body works, and listen to it. This can only be achieved through lots of training.

SGPT: What kind of running shoes did you use for the event?

GP: I use the Brooks Glycerin13. I supinate too much and they help with shin splints.

SGPT: Did you use double socks or body glide on your feet and body to prevent blisters and chafing?

GP: No, I suffered from some minor blisters but nothing terrible.

SGPT: What book are you reading now?

GP: I tend to rotate a few books at a time. Right now it’s, Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff…and it’s all small stuff, Roadshow: Landscape With Drums: A Concert Tour by Motorcycle, and 8 Weeks to SEALFIT: A Navy Seal’s Guide to Unconventional Training for Physical and Mental Toughness.

SGPT: What other events do you have on the horizon?

GP: I’ve tried Kokoro twice and have failed twice. I want to finish it. Something within my approach needed to be changed. Some of that change in strategy includes training for and completing increasingly more difficult goals. For example, this year I’ve done a GR Light, a half-marathon and now RAGNAR. Up next is the GORUCK Tough.

SGPT: Many thanks for the interview Gerald

GP: Thanks Brad. SGPT is a great resource and I recommend it all the time. Most importantly, thank you for your service to our country.

SGPT Interviews Kokoro graduate Nick Liagridonis

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