Elevation Trail Listener Reviews

Some show reviews and comments have rolled in, likely from the fear of more cricket and supercross talk, so we’ll share some of them (yes, even negative stuff). As I pointed out to David T, who’s been around with us since the very beginning, “The show is constantly evolving and who knows where it’ll go but I personally enjoy being open to discussing different sports and looking at the commonalities and differences between them. In the end, we do this for pure entertainment value and have to rely on a base of what we think is entertaining and go from there. Feedback like yours does help to give perspective for us and I’m sure will help nudge the direction of the show.”

We truly value our listeners and your feedback, so keep it coming!

Here are few:

Allen Kinsler writes:

I’m burned out on Bill Simmons and his B.S. Report. Too big, too refined and quite frankly I just don’t give a shit about U2s place in history and how Bono, Springsteen, and Chris Martin are all interchangeable or not interchangeable. Many pro athletes are terrible to listen to. I did enjoy his Loren Michaels interview though.
Serial was a good ride but too short lived.
I began listening to Elevation Trail to feed my hunger for all things ultra running. Since I have sucked at it for a solid year I have tried to amass knowledge to improve. While its base is ultra sports it delves into a broad range of topics such as cyclocross (whaaat?), cricket, issues in the grocery store, mountain biking, locker room etiquette, race directing, ethics/cheating, beef over grilled cheese (think 2pac vs biggie) scrotal length and trying to generate more likes than the first satanic church (they have).
Tim is self deprecating and seems anti-establishment. Gary sounds like the college professor that he is (sociology). Both are smart guys and do a good job of taking an issue and examining it through multiple points of view. They have no issue playing the devil’s advocate. I have laughed out loud more than a few times. Their debate style and presentation have caused me to weigh in while running and in my car into the void of air that surrounds me.
It has a loose feel that involves friends bantering back and forth in a stream of consciousness format. They throw in guests from different disciplines that include elite athletes (they are sooooo fast) but also normal/average people who compete.
Even the very known people that they interview aren’t really known outside of their niche sport. Most of them are fascinating characters that are doing something that they really like but also usually working a “real job.” I would be surprised if anybody has a Q score.
Celebrity is a curious phenomenon. It has really changed since reality TV started making people with no discernable talent famous. However, celebrity(especially sports celebrity) has really changed as I have become older. It is hard to relate to people that excel in big pro sports. The money and even the sport they play just gets more and more distant from who/where I am in life.
Don’t get me wrong, I cannot relate to being able to ride a bike without crashing, or running 100 miles super fast. However it is different in the endurance world when they have a life that isn’t that of a national celebrity. Plus they are usually far more eloquent as they were not groomed to be a pro athlete from their youth i.e. they likely wrote their own papers and took their own tests in college.
The last 2 years I have migrated into following more fringe sports where people don’t make obscene money and are doing it because they love the sport/activity. I still enjoy hearing from “top level” people but I’ve really grown to appreciate the stories and insight provided by those that I would run along with in a race.
Check it out if you are interested and have some commuting airspace to fill. It’s a great podcast and will expose you to some fascinating new stories.

David Tandberg writes:

I have been a long time listener and reader. In fact, I was reading Inside Trail way back when you were doing race previews, runner interviews, and commentary, etc (hell, I even read your old blog – Footfeathers). I followed you to your present incarnation. I enjoy your humor and your unique take on the MUT scene.

Recently you have started loosing me with all the cricket (I mean come on!), cycle-cross, and super-cross. Having followed since the beginning I log-on hoping to hear things MUT related. But that represents my interests and it is your show so you obviously can do what you want. However, I’ve been loosing interest and listening less frequently.

To further explain my thinking, my primary motivation in listen to y’all, and to earlier read InsideTrail, has been to be exposed to a less sanitized take on the MUT scene. I love iRunFar and read, when I have time, individual athletes’ blogs, but I access those sites for different reasons (information and motivation). Your website/podcast is the only source for unvarnished, unsantized critique, analysis and humor within the MUT blogosphere. I would hate to loose that.

That said, since I’m not making any effort to provide that kind of content, I can’t complain and y’all should do what interests you.

Brian Desmarais writes:

Dear Gary and Tim,

The threat of more cricket talk moved me off my rear to write a review.

You have a fan here in Tulsa, even if I have been pretty slow to support the show. Thank you for putting on a consistently thoughtful and entertaining podcast. Elevation Trail is the gadfly of the ultrarunning community, asking tough questions about the direction of the “sport” and peering behind what you call “butterflies and sunshine” that many ultrarunners project onto the world. I’ve been running long distances on trails for several years now and experienced some of the disillusionment that Tim talks about. I’ve never really hit it off with the ultrarunning scene, turned off by the one upmanship on suffering and a sense that you’re not truly “in” unless you’re working toward a “hundo”. I’ve entered some “races,” but mostly run trails more as an excuse to get outside (away from people) and enjoy our local parks (yes, we have trails in Oklahoma).

I love the wide variety of topics and guests on your show. Highlights for me have been the environmental impact of ultrarunning and the impact of social media. You’re interviews are great; more conversational and insightful than other podcasts and media sites that ask them same questions over and over. And I love it when you talk about mountain biking, a sport that both terrifies and fascinates me. Maybe one of these days I’ll give it a go.
I also appreciate how you guys are not afraid to point out your own flaws or even contradict yourselves on occasion. While that may annoy some people, it tells me that you guys are honest and don’t have a hidden agenda.

So keep up the good work!


Brian Desmarais