If you are looking for inspiration to build a healthier lifestyle, Patrick Sperling is it. Over 8 years ago, Patrick made a decision. He quit drinking and drugs, opting for a healthier and fitter lifestyle. But he didn’t stop there. Previously, Patrick golfed, played volleyball, and skateboarded. When he made the decision to adopt a healthy lifestyle, he quickly discovered trail running. And it soon became a focal point in his life.
In 2018 alone, Patrick placed 2nd in not 1 but 2 races, including the Blackfoot Ultra 50km and the Golden Ultra 3-day trail running race. In the Canadian Mountain Running Championship 2018, he placed 15th.
And he has no intention of slowing down anytime soon. Each and every year, he aims to be a little bit healthier, happier, nicer, and faster – a goal we can all admire and aspire to.
Patrick calls Edmonton, Alberta home. Yet, he’s done races across the globe, including in California and Greece. He’s quick to back-up his home turf stating that, “Nothing beats the runs you can do in Alberta. We are lucky to have the Rockies so close.”
His favourite race series is even based in Edmonton. He cites the Wednesday Night Frank McNamara Cross Country Series as a great workout and one that showcases the local river valleys, parks, and trails. He further elaborates on how such races have built an incredible and supportive running community in Edmonton.
What keeps him motivated? Like many, he considers running a personal test – a test that pushes the limits of one’s endurance, power, and mental toughness. It’s a measure of continual self-improvement. The last kilometre or that next race become a metaphor for tackling the hurdles that life will inevitably throw your way.
Patrick also attributes others’ training and perseverance as inspiration. His friends and fellow competitors motivate him to keep moving forward – especially those that don’t let their age stand in the way. His wife is, further, a constant supporter. And Patrick makes a note that, “She believes in me more than I do myself.”
As part of creating a healthy lifestyle, Patrick took on a vegan diet. Part of his reasoning was due to an animal rights perspective. In turn, this lifestyle has made him more compassionate to not just animals, but to people and the planet. The other part was the impact that whole foods and a plant-based diet had on his health and on his performance.
However, that isn’t to say that his running career hasn’t been met with some challenges. While he has been thankful not to have many serious injuries, he has experienced them. Working together with the Athlete’s Choice Massage team, Patrick has learned the best approach is to get professional help early and often. That way he can get back to hitting the trails as soon as possible.
Some of Patrick’s favourite memories take place amongst the trails winding through the mountains and valleys. “When the sunlight hits the mountains just right while you are running into a valley and all you can hear is the sound of the rocks under your feet. I have some memories like that, that bring me joy.”
A positive and inspiring force, we are proud to have Patrick as part of the Athlete’s Choice Massage community. You’ll find him prepping for his next race with likely a coffee, as well as the possibility of loud music to amp him up.
For those who aspire to run races or turn their lifestyle around, Patrick offers, “Pick something you like, or think you’ll like. You will be more motivated to train. Don’t worry about what other people are doing. If you like running mile road races, do them. If you want to run by yourself on a trail, that’s great too.”