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Professor Steve’s Moab 240 Experience


240 miles, 89 hours, 4 minutes, and 21 seconds. Desert, mountains, heat, and snow did not
keep Professor Steve from completing the endurance race, finishing in 36th place out of 260

“I wanted the challenge of seeing how far I could go. In my own way, it's also a kind of
selection process that I could put myself through. Something to set myself apart from who I was
the day before. A distinct visual growth. And proof of progress,” Steve said.
In January of 2022, Professor Steve applied to enter the Moab 240 mile endurance run. Over
the next seven months, his typical training regime would change in order for him to put forth his
best performance in the race.

“I have done a 100 mile ultra two months prior and it destroyed me so I knew I needed to
improve a lot. I hired one of if not the best coach in ultra running to get me to the finish, Jeff
“Bronco Billy” Browning. He was born in Missouri and has since put in some of the most world
records and 100 mile wins at prestigious mountain ultras,” Steve said. “The training plan lasted
seven months for seven days a week. Peaking with multiple four hour run days and a long day
weekly off road for six to eight hours. Three weight and strength training days per week and
recovery between sessions. Diet was based on lower carb and high fat protein. Thousands of
miles, hundreds of hours in the gym and a small fortune in wearing out gear training, prepping,
and travel.”

The race through Moab, Utah was not done alone, but with the help of 5 pacers along with
Steve’s family who helped everyone involved stay on track.
“I simply couldn’t have done this without a team. My parents, for one, with their Raptor fifth
wheel for gear and sleeping; my pacers who had to also train for their respective routes and my
wife, Jill who at all times was managing all of us and our personal life. She captained the crew
and made sure our kits were squared away prior to each segment, a critical component. Josh Y.,
Ryan H., Nick D., Dominic L., and Matt S. all paced a section after I completed the initial 75
miles through the desert (Canyonlands.),” Steve said. “I just kept thinking, if I make it to my first
pacer, then this race won’t stop me from willing my body across the finish line. Each pacer had
their own style and all of them with their fresh attitude gave me energy with their presence. Each
segment they covered presented unique challenges. Some had long, flat, and hot sections and
a couple included mountain ascents, descents, snow, and restrictive altitude. I, along with the
pacers, had to navigate the course with GPS and GPX which added a cool element and
required us to be attentive almost all of the time. Many people have gone off course and that
has led many to physically debilitating conditions, additional mileage, and an overall sense of
being lost. My friends/ pacers were sane when I wasn’t.”
His pacers and family were a key component to completing this race, but aside from his
trusted crew, Prof. Steve was able to be an example to all those who look up to him in his ability
to persevere even during the most difficult points of the trail.

“I wanted to do a fundraiser for the Special Operations Warrior Foundation, which assists in
the education of fallen SOF warriors. I have worked for, with, and amongst many. I believe that
for me to do this and really anything else to and quit is to dishonor that sacrifice they have made
for us to have full lives. All it is is a tough run; that’s it. If I quit, I am subconsciously giving others
permission to quit when the going gets tough. What will my daughter learn if I sign up,
supposedly do my best and quit? Not happening if I legitimately prepare and just keep on
trucking. We are all capable of more than our minds lead us to believe.” Steve said.
Although he may not be seen doing another 240 mile endurance run any time soon,
Professor Steve has achieved his goal of re-discovering the gratitude he has for his family,
friends, and career. There is always room for a new challenge.

After crossing the finish line, the next five days were spent with family, good food, and
healing blistered feet along with seeing some of the MOAB tourist sites.

“I genuinely felt incredibly strong going into this and even towards the end; considering I
weigh 217 pounds. I pushed that weight just about as hard as I could, but because of my
coaching and prep, pacers, diet during the run I still had some left at the end. I just sensed
gratitude to see my family and friends who care about me. I also immediately wanted my custom
MOAB 240 belt buckle;).” Steve said.
Looking back on the race, Professor Steve has clear memories of the picturesque
mountain scenes, crystal clear skies, and full moon. But these aren’t the only memories that are
stuck with him.

“The last mountain section from Pole Canyon to Geyser Pass [was the most challenging].
We peaked near 11,000 feet and inched our way through steep climbs, snow, and cool weather.
The legs pumped battery acid until we reached a peak, only to descend and find another ascent
to climb. That lasted approximately 14 hours and was between 180-198 miles into the run. That
section dropped me no less than five times and Dom kept me going.” Steve said. “[One story I’ll
share] is when my second pacer and good friend Ryan H. jumped in at 121 miles. It was
midnight and we were set to continue out of the aid station. He had a Bluetooth boombox zip
tied to his kit and blared as loud as it would go; NWA, party music, 80’s 90’s and other genres
for 18 miles through the desert all night. That was pretty funny and energizing. I’m not sure what
the runners we were passing thought, but we knew it wasn’t against the rules; this year.”
Due to the extensive training going into the race and all edges being smoothed out before
the race started, recovery has been easier than one would expect.
“My body was in excellent shape. I didn’t get any blisters for the first 121 miles or so. My
nutrition was set, liquid and salt on point. My wife helped at aid stations with active release of
the leg muscles,” Steve said. “In the end all I had was swollen feet and ankles. A week of slow
walking and the second week I am doing low impact cycling and a light amount of jiu jitsu to stay
loose and in shape.”

Professor Steve continues to be a fantastic leader, mentor, and a good example for
both his family and students at GB O’Fallon.
“I have so many good things in my life. Beautiful wife, wonderful daughter, excellent career,
best friends, great cars and home. Just about anything I could want, and some days I still want
more or have a bad attitude. I do these things to put myself back into a grind that humbles me.
Literally breaks me down, I see exactly and very clearly what I have and how blessed I am,”
Steve said. “It always brings me back to reality. My inspirational remark would be to keep
yourself in check, through whatever means necessary, stay humble and then you can help
others do the same. 

“It’s a great life if you don’t weaken mentally, physically or spiritually.”

Weblink to Learn more about the Special Operations Warrior Foundation Fundraiser