Today, I am very happy to roll out a new series on Mountain Lessons: the No Excuses interviews. Any semi-serious athlete knows that it’s damn hard to maintain momentum and keep growing in their sport. Families, commitments, work, laziness– all threaten us with mediocrity. To turn our goals into reality is a monolithic job that we take on in addition to the other challenges of our lives. It’s amazing that we get anything done.
But there are those among us, mere humans all, who get the job done over and over again. While you’re on the sofa, they’re running hills. While you pine for your two weeks of vacation, they’re planning expeditions. In today’s world of managed media personalities and slick Instagram streams, it is too easy to forget that these people weren’t born with some innate advantage. They don’t live in a magical world that makes their dreams happen for them. They work for it, like we do.
This interview series will seek to explore the approaches and personalities of athletes who are inspiring in both the quality and consistency of their achievements. They’re real people, people I know, and people whom I admire. I hope that you find inspiration in their words and that this little look into their psyches will serve as a reminder– what they do, you can too. If you want it.
Brody Leven (Adam Clark Photo)
Brody Leven. Pro Skier.
Professional athlete; self-mocking vegetarian; mountain runner; full-time alpine bum; rock climber; bike tourist; photographer; adventurer. No one of these titles is sufficient to describe Brody Leven.
A fellow midwesterner, Brody hails from the quietly flat state of Ohio. But unlike the rest of Ohio, he climbs on Denali with Conrad Anker, and skis away his North-American summer on South-American snow. A prolific writer, photographer, and social media adventure maven, he’s proud to be a self-made professional skier. And made it he has: in the last year he has traveled to Patagonia, Denali, Iceland, Romania, Ukraine, South America, Whistler, Mt Hood, and several more locations around the globe to ski and climb.
Recently featured in a Grit Visual video piece, Brody repeatedly accomplishes feats of endurance as impressive as running the Grand Teton, and he does it all with a goofy smile, approachable attitude, and seemingly unflagging energy. He joins us today to talk about how he realized his dream of going Pro and the challenges of staying fit for the mountains while traveling and whiling away weather days in an expedition tent.
Read on →