Derrick Spafford

Age: 49 , Years running: 34, Hometown: Yarker, Ontario, Canada, Favorite product: CROSSOVER 2.0 GTX


What are some of your lifetime running goals?

While I still enjoy racing, I am increasingly enjoying searching out new unsupported running adventures/expeditions of my own. The possibilities are endless and it’s really fun to plot out new routes to explore. I also enjoy sharing my passion for trail running with others by helping them get into the sport and achieve goals that they never thought possible.

Do you have a claim to fame?

I have run every day since December 25, 1989.

Do you have any vices?

Good coffee and great beer are a must! Nothing beats a quality stout from one of our local Ontario Craft Breweries.

What makes you tick as a runner and in the real world?

I just love running trails daily. I’ve been doing it for so long that I can’t imagine not. Getting away from the hustle and bustle of society, even if only for a short period of time, allows me to return to the real world in a better place and able to cope.

What drives you to run?

The feeling of being at one with nature and always having that connection. I don’t feel like I’m a visitor, but feel that nature is my home.

What is your favorite movie?

I really don’t watch many movies, and can’t recall the last time I went to a movie theatre to watch a big screen film. Our family does enjoy going to the Banff Mountain Film Festival tour each year to watch outdoor adventure films.

Do you have any nicknames? Explain:

Spaff - I grew up playing hockey in Canada and everyone had a nickname. Just a short form for my last name.

What’s the longest you’ve gone without sleep? Why?

Definitely following my first 100 miler. I was pretty pumped up on adrenaline and caffeine from gels that I couldn’t sleep for quite a while.

If you had to be named after one of the 50 states, which would it be?

I’m Canadian, so would want to be named after the ‘Yukon’ Territory, since it’s such a incredibly wild and beautiful area of Canada that is close to my heart.

What did you have for lunch yesterday?

PB&J is dead! I had Peanut Butter and Sriracha Sauce on a tortilla wrap. Don’t knock it until you try it!

If you could hook up a thought monitor to your head, would you see pictures, hear words or would music be playing?

Canadian and Irish Punk would be blasting from my head. Turn it up, or turn it off!

What really scares you about trail running?

I feel pretty comfortable in nature, but am always careful to avoid injury.

If your life was made into a movie, what would it be called?

‘Confessions of a Running Streaker’ has a nice ring to it.

Where would you live if it could be anywhere in the world?

I have been bitten hard by northern climates and culture. Whitehorse, Yukon in Canada would be on my short list for sure. I do feel pretty fortunate though that I live in an area of Canada that has hundreds of kilometres of trails right out my door.

What’s your worst encounter on the trail?

Having to Bivy in the middle of a 100 mile race in Northern Canada in the winter while being quite sick. I eventually finished, but it was a major struggle. I have also had lots of wildlife encounters but nothing where I felt too much at risk. Probably the one I was most concerned at the time was when my siberian husky ‘Meela’ squared off with a bear and neither would back down for the longest time. It ended well though...for dog, bear and runner.