At just 25 years old and sporting his iconic “power-moustache,” Hayden has taken the trail running scene by storm. A recent graduate and All-American from Southern Utah University, Hayden jumped right into his first trail races shortly after graduation. Two weeks off the track Hayden flew to New Hampshire and qualified for the USA National Mountain Running Team at the difficult Loon Mountain Race. One week later, he jumped into his first 50k trail race at arguably the hardest 50k course in North America, The Speedgoat 50k at Snowbird Ski Resort in Sandy, UT. Signing up the night before, Hayden raced aggressively and won his debut race and turned some heads along the way. He wasn’t done there with a debut 50 mile race at the prestigious TNF Endurance Challenge in San Francisco on December 3, 2016 that is considered one of the fastest 50 mile debuts ever. The future is very bright for this young, gutsy, and sometimes crazy ultra trail runner from St. George, Utah.
When I’m not training or competing, I love to: It seems like I am always training which is fine with me but when i’m not I love to hang out with my wife Ashley. We enjoy traveling, backpacking, visiting National Parks, and hiking together on mountain tops and all the beautiful lands of this world. I also enjoy watching and playing other sports such as baseball and basketball, namely the Boston Red Sox and Utah Jazz. Family will always be number one in my books and spending as much time as I possibly can with them is my main priority!
Something that very few people know about me is: I have an ongoing bet going on with my best friend and wife. They told me I couldn’t grow my hair out for 2 years. I am extremely competitive and can’t back down from a challenge so the hair will keep growing at least till the end of 2018!
A good title for my autobiography would be: The Man Behind the Stache! Stories of the Stache!
My favorite moment or achievement to date is: Winning the first gold medal for Team USA in the history of the World Mountain Running Championship. We won by 1 point and upset a very strong Italian team. We had set the goal and came together as brothers and then celebrated like brothers do!
The toughest moment I’ve ever experienced in a race is: Climbing up the last ridge line to Hidden Peak at my debut 50k (Speedgoat 50k). I was completely dead and running off fumes. At the same time I knew I was going to win and just needed to give it everything I had and get to the top. I went into a dark place that I have only gone a few times, but loved every minute of it!
I live in St. George, Utah because: It is the perfect place to train! St. George sits at 3000 ft elevation but I am able to drive 30 minutes north and be at 10000+ feet or 30 minutes south and be almost at sea level. There are thousands of trails running through this beautiful land and National and State Parks everywhere (Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, Grand Canyon National Park, Snow Canyon State Park). These trails offer thousands of feet of steep vert, technical terrain, or fast runnable surfaces. St. George is also home to me and I have all my family close by, it’s hard to beat it!
One thing I hope to achieve this year is: My main goals is to win CCC and break the course record this year. Most importantly I hope to gain some crucial experience that will help me have a long lasting career full of amazing accomplishments and wins! I would also like to break some FKT’s this year!
The event on my bucket list is: Western States Endurance Run! I have followed this event for years and get butterflies and full of excitement every time I think about it! I hope to run my first 100 mile race on this course in 2018!
My pre-race superstition is: I always give my wife a kiss before my races! If she is not their I give her a kiss over the phone! She is a strength to me and always calms me down before a race. I always look forward to another kiss at the finish line as well, if she is there!
Nathan helps me run stronger and run longer by: Keeping me hydrated, fueled, and comfortable. Ultra running is a drinking game with some running thrown in. The person that can win the hydration and fuel game is usually going to win the race or achieve their goal. I have learned this quickly and Nathan provides optimal gear to keep me hydrated and fueled. I have never worn anything as comfortable, lightweight, and functional than my Nathan gear as well. When you are comfortable you can run longer and stronger! Look good, feel good, hydrate good, RACE GOOD!
Press and Media:
Watch Hayden’s debut 50 Miler up close and personal here.