Noah Brautigam grew upon a family-run cross-country ski center in the Green Mountains of Vermont spending many hours of his childhood exploring the outdoors. Throughout middle and high school he participated in various sports before focusing on nordic skiing. He ran his first road marathon at age 18, and after skiing through college he came to the realization that the sport of running allowed for him to compete at a high level while also pursuing a professional career.
Now residing in Salt Lake City, Utah Noah works as a Geospatial Data Analyst for a munitions remediation company and as a trail and ultra running coach. Welcome to the UnTapped Maple Fanatics team Noah!
Three words that describe your running…
Joyful, Exploratory, Vertical
What do you love most about the sport of running, and the whole activity behind it?
Running for me is about the structured (sometimes) pursuit of joy and exploration. I find happiness in moving through landscapes and varying terrain – even city streets – seeing things that others might not ever get to see and experiencing highs and lows of emotion that are reserved for those who pursue outdoor endurance sports. Layered on top of that is the intellectual side of running: thoughtful preparation over months and years, and race-day decision making all play a part in making a better athlete. That’s a fun puzzle!
Also one of the best things about trail running that you don’t see in many other sports is the community that surrounds it. The people who gravitate towards mountain running and exploration are some of the best out there, and tend to be thoughtful, caring, and interesting folks.
What was the hardest event you have ever competed in?
The Cirque Series Vertical Challenge. For the entire month of October 2020, the goal was to accumulate as much vertical gain on foot as possible. Participants were required to run both up and down, no trams or shuttles, etc. I ended up averaging ~11,000 feet of gain each day for 31 days, while continuing to work full time and fulfill at least most of my at-home responsibilities. The challenge for me was about consistency, time and energy management, and above all mental toughness. No matter how poorly I slept, I got on the mountain each morning. No matter the stress of the day, I did it again in the evening. I had to maintain good speed, or else I wouldn’t be able to get my work done at my real job, or make it home in time to cook dinner. There was true joy in the relentless pursuit of a singular goal day in and day out.
(Editor’s note: Noah won the competition. In fact, he absolutely crushed it.)
Why is UnTapped your fuel of choice?
There are so many energy products out there, and as athletes we often will put whatever helps us perform in a given session into our bodies. I think that’s to our body’s long-term detriment. UnTapped products are organic and natural, and I know what all of the ingredients are, how they are made, and where they come from. Beyond that, they taste better than anything else and they work!
My go to favorites to pack on a long run are the simple and tasty Maple Waffles plus Coffee UnTappeds and when I not exercising I do enjoy a Coffee Waffle for breakfast with a cup of black coffee and sip on Lemon Tea Mapleaid for some afternoon brain power.
What are your potential goals or schedule looking like for 2021?
In April I am racing Canyons 100k trail race in California, then over to Europe for the summer to race the Eiger Ultra Trail in Switzerland. I also plan on racing as much of the Skyrunning World Series and/or Golden Trail Series as possible. Particular focus will be placed on the Tromso Skyrace in Norway and possibly Glencoe Skyline race in Scotland! Needless to say, I am very excited about 2021.
Photo Credit: Mary McIntyre