food consumption. He still enjoys cooking, often
creating his own recipes.
His mother also influenced his career path.“Being
interested in whole health was influenced by having a
mother who had multiple sclerosis,” he says. As a boy,
he watched a physical therapist work with his mother
in their home. Inspired, he would go on to earn a
master’s degree in the field and open his own practice.
As a physical therapist, Jurek became concerned
that some of his patients’ poor diets were affecting their
ability to heal. He started to convert his own diet. “I
found my body would recover [from runs] faster on
a plant-based diet,” says Jurek, who has been vegan
As he continues to talk about the importance of
eating whole foods and integrating movement into
daily routines, I start to wiggle in my seat. “Want to
go for a run?” I ask.
On a day that is sunny in most of the country, it
is snowing in the mountains of Boulder. The snow
slushes under our running shoes.
I almost expect his feet to fly above the ground.
Graciously, though, he lets me set the pace. I am
training for a half marathon at the end of the month.
Jurek is preparing for 24 The Hard Way, an ultra-
marathon in Oklahoma City in October at which he
will attempt to break the American record by run-
ning more than 172.5 miles within 24 hours.
“He previously held this record. [Jurek’s record
was broken in 2012 by Mike Morton.] I do think he
can do it again. If anybody has the ability to dig deep
and go beyond, it’s Scott,” says ultramarathon runner
Krissy Moehl, who calls Jurek a mentor and friend.
“I’ve seen him do it many times.”
Jurek hopes that his goal setting will provide
inspiration for others to make lifestyle changes. “I
used to hate running and I used to hate vegetables.
Life is about learning. Life is about being open to pos-
sibilities,” he says.
“One of my biggest goals is to pass on my experience and knowledge, to motivate and inspire others,
not necessarily to go win an ultramarathon, but to go
out for that first workout, to get interested in moving
their bodies, in eating well.” C
Julie Hagy ( www.freelancewriterdenver.com) is a
running enthusiast and writer in Boulder, Colorado.
Name: Scott Jurek
Member since: 2003
Costco: “I think it’s great
Costco is focused on organic food, and making it more
accessible. I’m a big fan
of buying in bulk, because
there are certain ingredients
that you can get in larger
quantities that make eating
“In the past, I have put on
trail-running camps. Costco
was instrumental in bringing
in enough food to feed 30
people for five days. Putting
on events like ultramarathons requires a lot of food.
I have made many trips to
Costco, helping friends set
up for ultras. Fueling runners for 50K to 100-mile
races, with anywhere from
200 to 500 racers in a field,
takes a lot of food. We’re
setting out bananas, peanut
butter and jelly sandwiches,
Clif Bars, and cooking up
pierogies and potatoes.”
Scott Jurek running
in the Indian Peaks of
Colorado’s high country.
See next page for Scott Jurek’s tips on health,
nutrition and exercise.