“Sherpa” John Lacroix is the founder and director of the Human Potential Running Series, the largest series of ultramarathons in Colorado and the fifth-largest ultrarunning series in the United States.
Any foot race longer than a 26.2-mile marathon is considered an ultramarathon. Lacroix directs races from 30 miles up to 100 throughout Colorado.
But John LaCroix is much more than an ultramarathon producer, he’s a man committed to his participants and to advancing the idea that we can overcome almost any obstacle if we just set out to do it. He should know; he’s seen thousands of people complete multi-day ultramarathons.
Human Potential, Human Experience
Lacroix was inspired to begin ultra running after hearing about the sport from a pair of hikers in New Hampshire’s White Mountains, where he was filming a documentary. When he asked them what it took to be an ultra runner, neither of them mentioned running itself.
“Their answers were, ‘You need to be stubborn and able to put up with some discomfort,’” he says, “and I’m really good at both of those. I was just intrigued by it, and I got into it. Thirteen years later, it’s my livelihood and it’s my life.”
Lacroix’s philosophy is that it’s not about the race; it’s about the human experience.
“My entire race series is built around the human experience and providing runners with an opportunity to discover what it is to be human,” he says. “The race is with yourself. It’s you versus the mountain. It has to be when you’re running 100 miles or 50 miles.”
As an ultramarathon runner himself for the past 13 years, Lacroix incorporates CBD into his fitness routine. Lacroix has run foot races of 100 miles or more 23 different times, and has run one 200-mile race.
“I use Hemp Balm for a lot of my aches and pains. As a long-distance runner, there’s nothing better than using the CBD-infused Hemp Balm at the end of a long run. I put it on the bottoms of my feet because I do a lot of damage,” Lacroix says.
“I put my feet through a lot of torture over the course of a race. The Hemp Balm allows me to recover and and give my muscles and joints a rest. It helps me be not only a well-rounded athlete, but a well-rounded person,” he says.
Runners’ Overwhelming Demand for Hemp Balm
In 2018 alone, Lacroix has given free tubes of Hemp Balm to more than 900 runners participating in the Human Potential series.
“They’ve been able to use the product and see the very positive effect of using something like a hemp balm during a race,” he says. “Suddenly, they started to ask for me to have tubes of it at my aid stations so that they could apply it in mass quantity during a race.
“That’s unusual because I’ve never had a product—and I’ve been race-directing for 10 years—that runners have deliberately and literally asked for before the race even starts. ‘Can you make sure you have some of that at the aid station for me?’”
Elixinol is a proud sponsor of the Human Potential Running Series, supplying Lacroix’s runners with Hemp Balm to support their races.
“It’s the first time anywhere in the world that a CBD brand is sponsoring a running series,” Lacroix says.
Lacroix says Human Potential’s partnership with Elixinol equips his runners to keep pushing toward their goals through the support of recovery and physical resilience. In his own experience, CBD hemp extract has helped him to reach the goals he sets for himself.
“Having Elixinol be a part of my brand has been nothing but beneficial, and nothing but applauded by my runners,” Lacroix says. “It is, above and beyond, one of the most meaningful partnerships I’ve ever crafted for runners through my races and all my years of race directing.”
Photos courtesy of John Lacroix.