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#3: Brendan Leonard
Someone You Might Like with lots of running tips
His book “I hate running and you can, too!” had me cracking up but also realizing for the first time in my life that those people sprinting past me when I’m out for a run are also likely hating parts of it as much as me, but persisting nevertheless.
An even better book (which he has coming out now) called “Make It: 50 Myths and Truths About Creating,” is a great redux of his earlier work “Make It ‘Til You Make It.” which I read one chapter-at-a-time each morning for weeks to shake me out of my procrastination, creative blocks, self-doubt, impostor syndrome, and my constantly convincing myself that I couldn’t start my new project until I had the absolutely perfect fountain pen… (Sounding familiar?)
He’s been sending out a daily excerpt these past weeks and there have been more than a few head-slapping moments of “WOW.” with his cartoons. He absolutely nails it.
Here’s a classic Brendan story:
His mug game is incredibly strong. My kitchen cabinet isn’t big enough for me to buy the whole set, so I settled on this nugget of gold:
I drank from this mug every morning while I triaged my garbage fire of an inbox, until one morning I reached for it and my clumsy bag-of-spaghetti for a hand knocked it off the table onto the ground, smashing it to smithereens.
Attempts were made to repair the mug, with the same clumsy hands that caused its demise, but to no avail. Mug boi was no more.
That was, until, I had mentioned it to Brendan, who promptly put one in the post the same day free of charge. It now sits on my coffee table as I write this post.
I finally got to meet Brendan in person last year the day before he ran the New York City Marathon. I think it’s the only time I’ve seen Sophie (a newly minted multi-marathoner) actually look starstruck. (She’s restraining herself from hugging him here…)
Anyway, I’ll let Brendan introduce himself:
My name is Brendan Leonard, and I started this website in 2011. I think we all need to spend more time doing things we love, going to places that make us feel small, remembering to laugh at ourselves, and getting a little cold, tired, and scared every once in a while. I’ve bicycled across America, run several ultramarathons, and lived out of a converted van for three years, climbing and adventuring in the mountains around the West.
I am a writer, and most of my work centers around adventure, travel, and human experiences with both of those. I’m a contributing editor at Adventure Journal and a columnist at Outside. My stories have appeared in Backpacker, National Geographic Adventure, Outside, Men’s Journal, Sierra, Adventure Cyclist, and other publications. My books are available here.
I created Semi-Rad.com as a channel for those of us who aren’t elite climbers, skiers, ultrarunners, and alpinists—the folks who love to get out there, but maybe don’t take it too seriously. Semi-Rad is enthusiasm for things regular folks can do, adventures for the every-person. It’s a website for those of us crushing it, kind of. I hope you enjoy it.