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Individuals of all economic strata are shedding their jobs, hometowns, and lifestyle to embrace a wider experience and a more meaningful existence.

Candice Burt

Candice BurtCandice Burt, born on the 27th of September, 1976 and grew up on an island in the San Juans of Washington State (Whidbey Island) in a very small rural town.

She was a child that played outdoors a lot because she was not allowed to watch TV or play video games.

"We either played outdoors or else we were given chores to do. Now she is not only an Ultrarunner, but designs Ultrarun courses and organizes numerous races."

"As a child and young adult I had horses and competed in horse shows in English - show jumping and bareback. That’s part of how I fell in love with mountain trails - I’d explore the woods and trails on my horses and I loved competing."

"I’ve always been running wild through the woods, ever since I was a little girl. Now that I have two girls of my own who now are 9 and 12 years old, we explore and travel together. Also my girls help me at most of my races as well - it’s a fun and challenging family endeavor!"

"I also enjoy being creative through writing and drawing. But, mostly I love spending long periods of time away from society and out in the woods and wild places. I enjoy my time with my children."

Candice Burt"I got into track and cross-country in high school to make friends and branch out."

"I enjoyed the team aspect of cross-country and I would go home and do my own workouts after cross-country workouts because I was so motivated."

"I enjoyed running in the woods near my house – just getting away from everything. I do think that some of us just have a drive that some other people don’t have. I have a very strong drive that gets me out the door every day. I can’t sit still - I need to move."

"After I got out of school I was working as a massage therapist when I started running ultramarathons and I really loved the vibe at ultras: the people, the places, the pain and joy, the challenges, everything about them."

"I was volunteering for races pretty early on and got hired by Rainshadow Running, a company that organizes 50k and 25k races in the Pacific Northwest, and ended up working there for over 3 years. "

"It was during that time I realized RDing (directing races) was something I was interested in doing, and on my own. I created a trail running series in Bellingham, Washington, so I quit doing massage, quit working for Rainshadow and created the Tahoe 200 Endurance Run and it took off from there."

Candice Burt"Now I direct 11 events, 3 of which are over 200 miles long! It’s a very full time job and I have 3 employees. My least favorite part is all the computer work, probably about 90% of my job."

"It includes getting permits, spreadsheets, making lists and more lists, ordering supplies and merchandise, research."

"Oh. and I dislike dealing with all the vehicles that I need to own to do what I do. Seems like something is constantly breaking down or about to break down. We have two Ford 350's, a Race RV, 26’ box truck, 35’ cargo trailer, and a 12’ cargo trailer. It’s a lot keep up and to maintain."

"I really love creating routes for races and going out to explore them. Course marking is also another part I enjoy - really any part of the job that gets me outside is enjoyable. I also enjoy meeting new people and learning about them through the races. The logistics of 200 mile races is also fun and challenging."

"I always want people to experience the adventure of a lifetime. That certainly seems to be the case with my 200 milers. They can be life changing. I wouldn’t waste my time with anything I didn’t love."

"My race distances are everything from 10k, to half marathons, full marathons, to 50k and 100k up to 240 miles! We have something for everyone. Mostly though what makes Destination Trail different from other series is our 200 + mile races."

"We have three and we call them the Triple Crown of 200s: Bigfoot 200, Tahoe 200 and Moab 240."

Candice Burt"As a race director I am aware of the differing participation numbers between men and women,"

"I see a lot more female runners in the shorter distances: 10k, half marathons, 25k races, even 50k as compared to 100 mile and 200 mile distances."

"As far as the reason why, I’m sure there are many reasons including physiological and psychological. Women tend to have a lot of things they are balancing in their lives: work, family, home, societal expectations and obligations."

"For men running these long races can be a macho, perhaps even heroic activity - a mindset that appeals more to men. Women want the freedom of being in the outdoors and experiencing nature but I don’t think we do it as often as a right of passage or as an impressive feat of endurance."

"One way to attract more women may be to continue to offer the more accessible shorter distance races. Just a taste of how much fun trail running is and then if you’re like the rest of us trail addicts, they'll just want more."

"I wanted to put together a race that went all the way around Lake Tahoe - which just so happened to be about 200 miles."

"I wasn’t sure anyone would sign up but I was so in love with the course that I had to do it!"

Candice Burt"As it turns out, Tahoe is now the second biggest 200 miler in the world. We had over 200 signups this year!"

"After the first year organizing the Tahoe 200 I wanted to see if I could create another 200 mile race and that’s when I came up with the Bigfoot 200. So then we also added the Moab 200."

"I have done rescue missions where I had to head out and find a lost runner and it’s happened more than a few times! At the Bigfoot 200, I set out with a lost runner’s SPOT tracker GPS coordinates on my Garmin handheld and was able to find the lost (and hallucinating) runner."

"It was extremely satisfying, as I believe without the SPOT tracker (which we require all participants to wear) he would not have been found. He was about 1 mile off trail down a very steep mountain in thick brush and heavy tree canopy."

"We do about 1 rescue mission per 200 mile race, but not all of them are this serious. We rely on our SPOT trackers and they cut down on rescue time because you know exactly where to find the runner."

"I realize this is over simplifying the future of trail running a bit, but I believe that the future of trail running seems to be going in at least two directions: competition and adventure."

Candice Burt"On the competition side we are going to see faster and more talented runners who do trail running as their 'fulltime job'. "

"They will become minor celebrities as trail running is slowly becoming more mainstream. This will bring in more media, more sponsors, more PEDs, more regulation, more “themed” trail runs and more hype."

"In the other direction, I believe we will see more adventure based races like the 200 mile events or multi sport/extreme races or the Barkley’s of the world, where it’s not about how fast you run but about whether you can finish."

"These will tend to be more old school with less focus on the money, fame and media and more on what the human spirit, regardless of its natural born talent, can accomplish. I know which future I’m rooting for and working toward."

"I’ve always been mostly legs. I’ve been very open about the fact that I believe that endurance running, specifically multi day distances are an entirely different sport and skill set than road running/track/marathon/short distance running."

"In fact, what I do is as different from a marathon as regular driving is to 4x4ing. We are talking about very different mental and physical skills with multi day running vs speed based (relatively) flat running."

Candice Burt"Different skill set, different body type, different mental requirements. Both equally fascinating and impressive sports. I’m drawn to the multi day events because I am interested in what happens beyond the body, when the mind goes, and where it goes."

"I’m interested in exploring the 4x4 terrain and what happens when you leave the usual path."

"Many of the most spectacular trails in the United States are located deep inside America’s wilderness areas and parks. There will never be 'races' in these places, but they are open to adventure."

"Accessing this wild terrain as a runner requires the right gear and the right amount of logistical support."

"Strengthen your body and you will strengthen your mind. The battle in your head is not so much about whether you should go run, but more about how far and for how long."

"I’ve been running for 21 years and I’ve learned through good and bad times that running is my sanctuary, not another thing on my to do list - but it didn’t start that way though! I didn’t immediately love running."

"It was fucking hard. I did it because I wanted to lose weight and get fit. It WAS another thing on my to do list and as such it was not sustainable."

"I’m not exactly sure where my turning point was, but when I became a mother with two small kids at home, I needed running so I could have something that was just mine."

Candice Burt"So I could come home and be fully present with my kids. Running became a reward for a well planned day and even a rarity as I wasn’t always able to get outside and run most days and I certainly didn’t have the money at that time for a treadmill."

"Running balanced me and eventually led me to the work I do today with @destinationtrailraces and @humansofultrarunning, leading to my my greatest creativity and a strength not just in body, but also in mind."

"So strengthen your body and you will strengthen your mind - Find a passion you will do no matter what anyone else says about it: “You’ll ruin your knees”

"Who cares what others think? Don’t ever ask a non runner for running advice and don’t take unsolicited advice from a non runner! Strengthen your body to strengthen your mind!"

"Races are the celebration, not the test is what my coach David Roche told me. It blew my mind. I mean, what?!! I thought we were supposed to suffer and destroy ourselves? It was like suddenly seeing a whole different reality."

"If it’s not fun, if you’re struggling and the story you are making is negative and overly dramatic what’s the point? You might as well be at a miserable 9-5 job staring at a computer."

Candice Burt"I think there is great power in ultraraces especially to gain greater understanding of our psyche, deep motivations, and our limits. It can also forge lifetime friendships with your fellow racers."

"We can choose a positive experience even when shit is going down, which it always does too! The joy within the struggle that we have consciously chosen is a tool that will allow us to explore deeper into the darker parts of ourselves."

"Deeper into becoming whole and not relying on our internal chatter, our persistent stories about what we should, would or could do - instead we just do it. We just are and we suddenly find ourselves at the finish, elated and joyful."

"I had to make a very difficult decision one day. Whether to change the #Moab240 mile course after the race started to detour around the deepest and most dangerous snow - or send runners up and over South Mountain’s 10,700ft pass and hope for the best."

"The decision became easy when I considered my job and the trust that my runners and their family and crew and pacers have in me and my route."

"We had hoped more snow would’ve been melted, that it wasn’t quite so deep or dangerous but today’s scouting and remarking proved it to be too much."

Candice Burt"The decision is always to choose safety when a race becomes more dangerous than runners bargained for. At 180plus miles into an ultra I could not in good conscious send runners on the regular route over 10,000 feet and through 2.5 ft of snow."

"Later that night after reworking the details there is still 24 hrs before we have the first runner getting close to the new route at 180 miles in. I felt good about that decision. I wanted all runners to finish with all fingers and toes and return safely to their families. Snow on the trail is no joke."

More about Candice at www.wilddefined.com
YouTube Channel

Tahoe 200 Endurance Run


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Bonesetters Waiting Room

In the Bonesetter's Waiting Room:
Travels Through Indian Medicine

BBC Radio 4 Book of the Week India defies definition, and the story of medicine in India is similarly rich and complex: shaped by unique challenges and opportunities, uniting cutting-edge technological developments with ancient cultural traditions, fuelled by political changes which transformed the lives of millions and moulded by the energy of forceful individuals. Here, Aarathi Prasad investigates how Indian medicine came to be the way it is. Her travels will take her to bonesetter clinics in Jaipur and Hyderabad and the waiting-rooms of Bollywood's best plastic surgeons, and introduce her to traditional healers as well as the world-beating heart surgeon who is revolutionising treatment of the poor around the globe.

Like a Virgin

Exploring the Frontiers of Conception

Sexual evolution is a slippery business. Like all mammals, we humans seem to have been left no choice in the matter: even though it is costly, inefficient and dangerous, if we want to reproduce we simply have to have sex. Yet most human cultures tell the tale of a maiden who gives birth untouched by a man; and in the wild there are plenty of creatures – such as turkeys, komodo dragons, sharks and the ‘Jesus Christ’ lizard (which walks on water, too) – that take various approaches to reproducing without sex.

In LIKE A VIRGIN, the biology writer Aarathi Prasad discusses how reproduction without sex is achieved in animals and explores why evolution hasn’t made it an option for humans – yet. In doing so, she provides a quirky, entertaining and perceptive overview of the mysteries of evolutionary biology, sex and reproduction – past, present and future.

It’s a remarkable story that ranges across Greek mythology, natural history, agriculture, conservation and medicine; takes in some of the most exciting areas of developmental genetics and molecular biology that other popular science books largely ignore; and is packed full of a cast of amazing characters, be they obscure animals or eccentric scientists such as the respected geneticist Dr Helen Spurway who in the UK in the 1950s unwittingly sparked a nationwide search for a virgin mother.

There is now a plethora of strategies being developed in reproductive medicine that could ultimately keep our species going in a world of embellished sex: the creation of artificial eggs and sperm from bone marrow, labs-on-chips on which eggs are fertilized, silicone wombs and artificial wombs (where fetuses can spend their full nine months), and even research to prepare us for reproduction in space. What’s more, we are finally beginning to understand what genetic modifications are needed to allow for the creation of women who could have babies without having sex. Now that we have the competent hand of science in our lives, will girls still need men?

Publisher: Oneworld (UK/US)
Pub Date: 16 August 2012
Status: Draft manuscript
Length: 288 pages

All rights available excluding:
UK & Commonwealth, US, Arabic (Arab Scientific), Japan (East Press)

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Yabanci is a book by a Dutch woman who moved from Holland to Turkey to start a new life in a Turkish village overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. A great read for those who are considering a move abroad or have lived in a different culture. Available in English as an ebook or in Dutch in both print and popular ebook formats... take a look

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