“I need that moment when I think, ‘This sucks,’” is how he put it.
When he first started running, Engle did it as a form of penance — “I was feeling badly about myself and wanted to punish myself,” he said. Then, as he realized he was good at running long distances, ultramarathons — and other, even more extreme events — became a way to test his limits and, to some extent, build his celebrity. Five years ago, running took on another role in his life: It helped keep him sane. Now, Engle runs long distances not only because he loves it but because it is one thing he can do that nobody can take away from him.
To put it another way, running has saved his life.
Liar Loan Troubles
The first time I ever spoke to Engle, he was calling me from a telephone in a minimum-security prison in Beaver, W.Va. This was in the spring of 2011, three years after the financial crisis. In the wake of that crisis, millions of people lost their homes…