Interview with the Indomitable Jenn Shelton

Jenn Shelton is an American ultra marathoner and running nomad. She spends her winters ski mountaineering in the Italian Alps and her summers trail running in all sorts of beautiful places.

In 2007 she set the women’s U.S. 100-mile trail record at the Rocky Raccoon ultramarathon. She has won numerous trail and road races and has run a 2:45 marathon which qualified her for the Olympic Marathon trials.

She is perhaps best known from Christopher McDougall’s best-selling book Born to Run in which she is one of the main characters.

photo credit: Jenn Shelton

There is a film about her called Outside Voices which came out in 2016. It follows her from place to place as she lives in her van, glides down spectacular trails and jumps into alpine lakes. The film doesn’t follow any sort of plot other than to give people a look into her bohemian life. In the last scene she is playing a game that involves repetitions of sprinting, chugging beer and shooting a beer can off a fence.

I’ve always been fascinated by people who live an adventurous life (at the moment we are on our own adventure in Alaska and Canada), so it was exciting to meet and speak with Jenn. I’ve been following her on social media ever since reading Born to Run. It seems that she is always on some far-flung adventure!

We happened to be in Juneau at the same time. She was there as a special guest at Geoff Roe’s mountain running camp (Geoff won Western States in 2010) so I reached out for an interview.

We met in the upstairs of a pizza restaurant at 9:00 pm, so you will hear some background noise in the interview. This was a lot of fun! I hope you enjoy getting to know Jenn Shelton a little better. Follower her on Twitter and Instagram @sheltonjenn. She and a friend are working on a coloring book for runners. If you are interested in supporting the project (not sure if they are doing a kickstarter campaign or what) you can direct message her on Instagram.

Also Mentioned in This Episode . . .

Angie’s Summer Reading List

  • Daring Greatly, Rising Strong & Braving the Wilderness by Brene Brown
  • Capture by David Kessler
  • The Places that Scare You by Pema Chodron
  • Drive and To Sell is Human by Daniel Pink
  • Devoured by Sophie Egan
  • Mom & Me by Maya Angelou
  • Blitzed- Drugs in the Third Reich by Norman Ohler
  • Rabid by Bill Wasik
  • What to Remember When Waking by David Whyte
  • The Book of Joy by Dalai Lama & Desmond Tutu
  • I’m Judging You by Luvvie Ajayi
  • Eating Mindfully by Susan Albers
  • The Upside of Irrationality by Dan Ariely
  • The Spy by Paulo Coelho
  • Lots of fiction…. The Otherland Series by Tad Williams, White Fang & The Call of the Wild by Jack London, The Three Musketeers by Andre Dumas, The Bear and the Nightengale by Katherine Arden, The Secret Place by Tana French, Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery, and How to Walk Away by Katherine Center.

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About Trevor Spencer

Trevor Spencer is the producer of the Marathon Training Academy Podcast. He loves to inspire people to take action in their fitness and life.

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