Q&A with Ultra Runner Kurt Decker

Nick Graham
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New Balance and RootsRated have teamed up to profile runners making a difference in their communities. We asked each of our runners a series of questions to learn a little more about what running means to them, where they like to run and what are some of their running goals.

Kurt Decker is one of those runners that will never complain that it's too cold or it's too early - he just gets it done. That kind of determination is important if your training ground happens to be one of the colder cities in the USA.

Do you belong to any running groups? Formal or informal?
Nothing formal on a week in week out. There are a bunch of guys who meet every Friday and Saturday morning that in the past I have run with. As of late I have been more hit or miss with them.

Favorite trails?
Day in day out I run Theodore Wirth and Minnesota River bottoms the most. I also try to mix in Lebanon Hills Park once a week.

What's it like to have work and hobby blend together so well?
It is something very special and I never ever lose sight of that.

Morning runner or after work?
During the week it's after work and mornings on the weekend. I stay up way to late during the week to get up early before getting the kids going.

Treadmill Yes or No?
No it's just not for me. Running is all about my movement in environment.

Do you run year round? Winter-outside or in?
Yes I love running all year long in all the different season. The same trail has a different feel in different seasons. I will run indoors on a indoor track once per week in the winter for some speedwork.

Favorite pieces of gear?
Wow that is a big question to nail down. In the late fall and winter I get a lot of use out of my Petzl Nao headlamp that is for sure!

What's your routine? Describe. Coffee first? Out the door fast or slow transition?
I like to easy into my run, a very slow transition for sure. Coffee is my treat after my runs!

Do you listen to music? Favorites?
Yes when running alone most of the time. I really like what it adds to my run. Favorites? Man on my iPod it could go from Linkin Park to Johnny Cash back to LCD Soundsystem. I am all over the place and I like that!

In the middle of a hard race and devil on your shoulder telling you time to quit, how do you keep going?
That is so hard at times but I find if I can break things down to very small little victories works best. Taking one step at a time. I feel like the mental side of running is like 50% of everything. We can do so much if we can just believe.

Favorite post race / long run activity/approach to recover?
Movie time with the family, good food and a good beer works for me.

Bucket list races?
I would say UTMB in Europe or Hardrock 100 in Colorado absolutely!


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