My name is Rory Bosio, although friends call me Bozo and my family calls me Billy Goat as i love to run up mountains and smell nearly as bad. When asked my profession I say that I’m a part time pediatric ICU nurse and part time ultra runner. Running in the mountains is my true love (apologies to future boyfriends). I ran my first ultra race in 2007 and became instantly addicted. I’ve since logged thousands of miles on my own two feet all over the globe & hope to continue to do so for the rest of my life.
I run for the complex mixture of freedom, equanimity, joy, and discomfort it provides. Running brings me more pleasure, pain, frustration, and rewards than any other element of my life. Over the past couple decades running has been the backbone to my life. The reasons I run are more numerous than the grains of sand on a beach or the amount of shoes in Imelda Marcos’ closet, but here are a few factors that motivate me to lace up the shoes and head outside practically every day.
“Running brings me more…”
“Luckily my experience with running improved…..as for the boys, not so much”
Running has been a part of my life longer than my love of Marky Mark (back when he was in the Funky Bunch…remember that Calvin Klein ad? Ooh la la)
I ran my first race at 8 years old. It was a mile around the elementary school, and I hated practically every step of it. It was more of a struggle for me than asking the popular boy to prom in high school. Both left me feeling dejected and frustrated. Luckily my experience with running improved…..as for the boys, not so much. I ran cross country in high school and had more of a natural affinity for it by then, but it wasn’t until I was out of college that I discovered my love of the long, long, long run. I was living in my hometown of Tahoe City and instead of bar hopping my way through life like my friends, I spent my days in the mountains, exploring my backyard on my own two feet. I grew up in a very outdoorsy family, always hiking, biking, skiing, etc., so it was natural to spend as much time outside as possible.
“I had done plenty of drugs in my youth, but nothing was as ecstasy-inducing as running for hours and hours on end.”
On a lark, I signed up for a 50km race thinking it would be something I would do just once to challenge myself. That first race was definitely a mental and physical challenge, but it was also surprisingly fun! Like a lot of ultra runners, I became addicted to that cliched “runners high”. I had done plenty of drugs in my youth, but nothing was as ecstasy-inducing as running for hours and hours on end. From there I progressed to running 50 milers and then 100 milers, my true love. The longer the run, the more I felt like I was in my element. I’ve since structured my life around running. Working as a nurse gives me a flexible schedule to play as long as I want in the mountains.
“There is no better way to see the world than on my own two feet.”
Running is the means to discovering the world and my personal limits:
For me, there is no better way to see the world than on my own two feet. Through running, I’ve been able to explore places all over the world from my home mountains in California to the Alps in Europe, to the Atacama Desert in Chile and everything in between. The simplicity of running and the fact that I’m not going at break-neck speeds allows me to immerse myself in nature and fully absorb the beauty around me. While I love to do other activities such as mountain biking and skiing, I never feel as fully connected to nature as I do when I’m running. It probably has to do with the fact that I have to concentrate more with other sports or am going too fast to fully appreciate my surroundings. For example, going downhill on a bike gets me worried about going ass over tea kettle, so I have to focus more on not crashing whereas with running I can get into a flow zone easier. Of course, ultra running has also challenged me to push past my perceived mental and physical limits. Running a hundred miles is difficult and forces a person to dig deep. However, I live such a cushy life, spoiled by the creature comforts of modern life, so I think it’s important to feel discomfort and pain once in awhile in order to have a more enriched human experience. I also use running as a way to work through whatever is pestering my mind. I get my best thinking done on a long run. It has something to do with the methodic tempo of running. My thoughts start to flow at the same pace and suddenly my mind is operating on a higher level. If only I could have channeled this when I took the SATs!
“I can truly feel like I’m living in the moment when I’m out running.”
Reason # 1:
Running is my true love. (Sorry Alex Trebek! But you’re a close second….)
Other people reach their happy places by meditating, or maybe shopping, playing video games, lounging on a couch, eating, snorting enough cocaine to kill a pony, but for me, running is the portal into my happy zone. I can truly feel like I’m living in the moment when I’m out running. The rest of the world dissipates. My troubles no longer seem to exist, and I’m the master of my own little universe for that period of time. Of course, this doesn’t happen every time, but it feels like I’ve hit the jackpot when it does. And to think, all it took was putting one foot in front of the other.
We also want to hear your stories. Share your motivation for running in a short story and hashtag #whyirunjaybird on Instagram for a chance to win weekly prizes including earbuds and a chance to be featured on our social channels. We’re inspired by every type of runner, so don’t hesitate to share your passion with us. To the parent that wakes up early before sending their kids off to school, the beginner seeking to finish their first 5k, and the marathoner looking to set a new PR, your passion inspires more people than you’ll ever know. Share your stories with us and #runwild. Find more info about the This Is Why I Run series here.
Keep in touch with Rory!