Wednesday, April 25, 2012

My New Book: 138,336 Feet to Pure Bliss

It is with unbridled pleasure that I can announce today that my second book will be available nationwide on starting May 30th, one day before my birthday. The book is entitled

138,336 Feet to Pure Bliss - 

What I Learned about Life, Women (and Running) in My 1st 100 Marathons

Now, what is exactly 138,336 feet long?  Simple – a marathon. (Actually, a marathon, 26.22 miles is 138,435 feet.  The title referring to the more commonly known 26.2 miles, is an homage to how the marathon distance has changed so many times in its history.) What is the book about? 381 pages. (Ha!) But, let's turn over to the back cover for a more detailed answer (which everyone in the world does anyway.)

In 138,336 Feet to Pure Bliss, Dane chronicles his first 100 marathons and details some of the premier races in marathon history, all while sharing knowledge he gained about life, women and running.  Along the way, he charts the highs and lows, the successes and failures in a voice that blends wisdom, humor, and heart.

All told, Dane shows how pure bliss is discovered one stride at a time.

If you want to know more, then read the advance praise I received from some of the biggest names in running. It is a great honor and privilege to have each of them say what they have about my book.

*Dane writes with power and purposes, just like he runs. His passion and conviction are apparent in every footstep he takes and in every page he pens.
 Dean Karnazes, Ultramarathon Man

*Most runners, and writers, would think this had been enough—racing a marathon every weekend in one calendar year and then publishing a book about it. They would have settled back into smaller challenges. Not Dane Rauschenberg. His list of adventures has grown longer, and his stories about them have grown richer. Pure Bliss stamps Dane even more firmly as one of the hottest young talents in running writing. 

Joe Henderson, Longtime Running Commentator

*The more you do, the more you CAN do.  Dane is living proof. Go for it!

Kathrine Switzer, Running Advocate & First Woman to Enter the Boston Marathon

*Dane offers the passionate runner and even the occasional jogger inspiring stories of life and running, seen from every angle of the running world. One can easily tell the depth which Dane cares about the sport and wants to share all the knowledge he has learned with the reader. This book is a page-turner! 

Wayne Kurtz, Author, Beyond the Iron

*Some nice guys do weird things! Dane shares his running adventures with a mix of warm enthusiasm, sane advice, and comical humor.
Roger Robinson, Running Author & Senior Writer, Running Times

For those who cannot wait until May 30th, and wish to get their own personalized and signed copy, just contact me at and one of the advance copies I will be receiving in just a few weeks will be yours!

Here’s to your Pure Bliss!



Monday, April 16, 2012

Changing Gears

Ever since May of 2009, when I last sent my marathon PR, my running has been on a different track. I knew, even then, I would be attempting a solo running of the 202 mile American Odyssey Relay a year later.  While the rest of the year played out with engagements and races already planned (including one last shot at a new marathon PR that was not disastrous but not great) I knew my running was going in a different direction. I would be taking on events which would challenge me like no other in my life. but they wouldn't involve speed.

In the book Death Valley 300, author Rich Benyo talks about becoming the first two people to attempt to run the Badwater 150 mile course (which includes the regular 135 mile course and then the ascent to Mt. Whitney) to and from Badwater. In it he talks about the training for this would hit his ego as he knew he would be sacrificing speed for endurance.  I know exactly what he was talking about. After finishing the 202 miler, I had already began the first steps of planning for the 350 mile run of the coast of Oregon. I "recovered" from the 202 and spent most of the first half 2011 simply trying to regain speed which never came back. I should have known with what i had on tap it wasn't going to happen. I threw in a half-hearted marathon PR attempt with high hopes here and there but nothing panned out.  In the back of my mind all that loomed was the 350 miler.

Now that 350 is completed and I am changing gears a bit. I want to run fast again, at least what “fast” is to me. I also wish to really try to get into triathlon.  I dabbled in it a little bit last year with moderate success.  My first ever Olympic Distance tri netted me a slot at the national championship race. Not too shabby.  However, my traveling last year (41 weekends on the road) made it very difficult to get cycling training in necessary to be competitive in triathlons. Everyone I know seems to loathe the swim when in reality it is such a small darn part of the triathlon it almost doesn’t exist. Only in Olympic distances does it even remotely comprise a percentage of effort overall to be worried about. No, it is about the bike.

I am still traveling quite a bit but I have scaled back my airline miles this year. With a move of locations coming up, there will also be less time than desirable to dive headfirst into tris.  But that’s OK.  You see I plan on making them more and more of a focus of my overall training for the next few years. I have shown what I can do in the running world. I will never be a “fast” marathoner. But I can do some rather challenging running feats. Now I want to see what I can do in the triathlon world. Honestly, I wish aquathlons (swim-run events) were more prevalent, because if I could ditch the bike entirely I would be a happy camper.  However, they are few and far between and the ones I have seen have an odd propensity to couple a mile long swim with just a 5k. How that isn’t at least 1 5k to make I a true test of endurance at both events is beyond me.  But I digress.

So while I will obviously still be running quite a bit, the current trajectory is to go to the shorter distance races (marathon on down) and get my butt in the saddle and into the pool. I am looking forward to the change of pace and change of athletic muscle usage. With two different 70.3s on the horizon (Boise and Vikingman) I am hoping to make a few people worried when they see my name in the registration list.

We will see how it all plays out.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Do Nothing Foolish

Saturday morning for me in Salt Lake City.  It's partly cloudy and 42 degrees. There is next to no humidity. This is one of those days where if you were to be running a marathon, and are trained well, you are probably going to set a huge PR.

Across the country in Boston, while tens of thousands of runners are getting ready to run in the most famous footrace in the world, the exact opposite is brewing. Projected highs in the mid-80s are being coupled with bright sunshine for Monday morning. For a race starting at 10 AM (mercifully moved from noon a few years ago) that means virtually everyone will be still running when the apex of the temperature and heat and humidity will be blasting down from above. Let me sum up the thought process of probably 99.9% of those runners for you: "Craptastic."

I despise racing in the heat.  Heck, I despise racing in 60 degree weather. As my years of racing have gotten a little greater, I have gotten better at racing in the heat. Please note the use of the comparative adjective. "Better" does not mean "good".  It also does not mean that I have conditioned my body to running in warm weather.  In fact, I might have made myself 10% better at it during this time. But what I have done is become a smarter runner. I now know that if it is hot, I am simply not going to be running what I want to run. I can shoot for a sub-3 hour marathon, crash from the heat and struggle across in 3:45 or decide that sub-3 is not going to happen and run a conservative 3:10 and look like I went out for a jog.  That's the difference: the mindset.

I am hoping those running on Monday have that mindset.  If the current weather forecast stays the same, use your head. If you forget to use your head and you find yourself in some dire straights, there is nothing wrong with a DNF. "DNF" usually means "Did Not Finish".  It is dreaded by many.  It is deemed to be the utmost of horrible things. However, to me, "DNF" sometimes means "Do Nothing Foolish".

My first Boston Marathon was in 2005 in conditions that were very similar to what will happen Monday.  I half-listened to myself. Not nearly as wise as I am now (it was, after all, just my 8th marathon) I went out too hard in the heat. However, when I realized it was not going to be a good day at all, I slowed the pace. I walked. I rested. At the time my PR was a 3:07. I did a 3:24 at Boston.  It stung not to do my best time but to only be 17 minutes off, mixing in walking breaks in the sauna-like conditions, was something I was very happy with.

Boston is wonderful.  It is historic. It means so much to so many people.  But it is just a race, people. Remember that.  If you find yourself needing to stop, do it. Your long-term health and long-term running career depend on you being able to use your head when you body is not working. I absolutely promise you that there will be another race down the line.

Let's have you around to finish it, OK?