Badass of the Week: Craig Kohring

Name: Craig Kohring
Hometown: Seattle, Wash.
Major: Mechanical engineering
Minor: Aerospace engineering
Year in School: Super senior

Hobbies: Running,biking, rock/mountain climbing, fishing, backpacking, anything outside

If you could do anything for a day, what would it be?
I’ve always wanted to do an ultramarathon, 100 miles. If you could run 100 miles in under 24 hours you are considered basically a god among men. If I could get a hundred miles in one day — I would call that a good day. Either that, or I would go kayak fishing for marlin down in the Bahamas. Hooking into a fish bigger than the boat you are sitting in — I think that would be a hell of a good time.

What day will you never forget?
My friends and I were backpacking in Washington. We were eight miles from the car and I realized I didn’t bring any of my strapping for my hammock. I didn’t want to sleep on the ground and I didn’t want to hike back, so I thought about my options. I dug up some roots and braided them all together and hung my hammock in the trees about five feet off each tree. I woke up every five minutes for the first half of the night thinking, “There is no way this can hold up.” But sure enough, the root-rope held up all night.

What brought you to MSU?
Fishing, skiing and the outdoors.

What is your favorite race?
Probably the 5k. I used to run the 400m and 800m but I just can’t find them anymore. I ran the Bozeman Marathon and it was a hell of a good time, but it was painful, and I like winning. As much as I would have liked to step up to the line at my first marathon and dream of winning, I knew that was a delusion of grandeur. I am better suited for 5k runs right now.

What is your plan for your future?
I suppose I would get a job doing engineering work. To be honest, I would rather take a year or two off and make a kayaking trip from Juneau to Seattle or go climb some mountains. I got a job offer at Boeing; so, truth be told, I would probably go back to Seattle and get some money in my pocket.

What is your “ideal” race?
Rain! I grew up racing in the rain.

What do you do to prepare for a race?
Music and bananas. For the marathon, my song was “Hold On” by Alabama Shakes. I thought it was fitting, trying to run 26 miles, and I was really feeling it by the 18th mile. That song definitely helped me take a few extra steps toward the end.

Is there a quote or person that inspires you?
Steve Prefontaine would be an important one running wise, Pete Seeger too: he has nothing to do with running, but I play the banjo. Also, Ralph Waldo Emerson’s “I hate quotations.” To me that means, tell me what you know rather than just throwing around quotes and think for yourself.

What do you love about running?
There is so much to like. One, I can go out and do a 10 mile run on my own — I don’t need to pull up the Facebook group and bring everyone in and make it a huge ordeal. Two, the challenge. One time, I asked my friend if he wanted to go hike Mount Baldy, he said that he didn’t have enough time for a four-hour hike. I said, “You know what? Not only am I going to make it to the top of Baldy in four hours, I am going to run from my house, down the highway and up the M to the top of Mount Baldy and back in under four-hours.” I like the challenge and the accomplishment.