A few months ago, Andrew Glaze would say “dinner miles” as a joke when he ran at night. The way it went was he would feed his body and his legs. It was a playful way to excuse himself and go for a run.
Then, he started saying it on social media. In videos on his Instagram and TikTok channels, he used it as a sort of catchphrase followed by: “I’m feeding my legs miles because my legs are hungry.” Soon after, “dinner miles” started trending among his more than 465,000 followers.
People from all over the world started sending him videos tagged “dinner miles” as well as “breakfast miles” and sometimes “brunch miles.” It generated so much buzz that he launched the Dinner Miles Club on the running app Strava. In just a few weeks, it gained more than 1,600 members.
Dinner Miles might sound like a run-of-the-mill social media strategy, but unlike influencers, Glaze doesn’t make money from his posts. In an interview with Outdoors.com, the 45-year-old ultrarunner explained that he kind of rejects the idea of getting paid for his content.
“There’s a little bit of punk rock still in me where I’m ‘F corporations.’ I’m not a NASCAR. You’re not gonna put your little label on me. You can’t buy me,” he said. “I definitely have a little bit of that on the inside.”
Glaze started running at age 24 as a way to deal with anxiety and depression, which he said was the result of an unhealthy lifestyle and inactivity. Then, about 10 years ago, he signed up for a 24-hour tough mudder.
“I was like, ‘I’m gonna be running really far in 24 hours so I better train for that.’ And so the way I trained for it was running a couple of 50Ks, which is 31 miles, and that’s sort of like the rabbit hole of getting into ultras,” he said.
While he found the tough mudder to be hard on his body — he didn’t want to blow out a knee or shoulder — he liked the endurance challenge, so he decided to stick with running. And he pretty much hasn’t stopped since.
However, he has a lot more responsibility today. He’s a firefighter and a captain in his department, a husband, and a father of three, so he runs for the same reasons he started and more. As a runner, he covers nearly 8,000 miles a year, competes in ultras all over the country, and he regularly films his activities.
In most of his videos, he’s running with his phone in his hand, taking a dip into an ice bath, or sitting in a sauna — his “daily reminder to do hard things” — but almost every week, he posts about a major event like a long run or race. One of his most recent adventures was a wild one.
The Coco Canyons 350
On April 28, Glaze finished the Canyon Endurance Race in the California foothills of the Sierra Nevada range in just under 28 hours. Running a 100-mile race is good enough for most people for the week, but a couple of days later, Glaze headed over to run the Cocodona 250. As the name implies, it’s a 250-mile race from Black Canyon City to Flagstaff, Arizona.
He said he wanted to run 350 miles in less than a week to challenge himself, and challenge himself he did. Over four days, 12 hours, 22 minutes, and 58 seconds, he pushed his body to emotional and physical extremes. While he started and finished with a smile, he also cried tears of joy, hallucinated objects emerging from the ground, and at times struggled to stay awake while running.
Why push himself to these extremes? Glaze is an ultrarunner, and that’s what ultrarunners do. They endure the pain and discomfort that come with running extremely long distances. It’s about the journey, not the destination. But why record these vulnerable moments and post them on the internet for all to see?
The Vlogging Runner
While it may seem like his running and vlogging go hand-in-hand, Glaze said his motivations come from different places. He runs not just because it’s therapeutic but also because he loves it. With a three-year running streak of covering more than 100 miles per week, it’s fair to say he has an obsession.
What keeps Glaze making content, though, is the same reason he launched the Dinner Miles Club: it’s his way of inspiring others to run. “If people are running and thinking of me and putting that energy out in the world, I feel like I’m successful in my endeavor of why I’m doing all this,” he said.
However, another explanation for his vlogging is that it’s simply easy to do thanks to platforms like Instagram and TikTok. If you look back to his early videos, some nine years on YouTube, you can tell he added some production value, but they’re not as personal. If you ask him what changed, he’ll say the platforms.
“I think I kind of like tripped into this whole thing because I’ve always made videos but they never went viral. But now that there’s a new format that makes videos so much easier to make and upload, I’m just able to reach a lot more people.”
He explained with Instagram’s Reels and TikTok, he can make a video in five or 10 minutes and post it with just his phone and his videos will get millions of views. If he wanted the same results on Youtube, he’d need to invest more time and money into equipment.
“It’s funny because I’ve always sort of made videos of my races and stuff, but back in the day, it wasn’t quite as easy to do. I’d videotape myself, but then I didn’t really have the proper software to edit it or do anything,” he said. “None of that was really easy to do back then.”
The Glazeruns Channel
At the end of the day, Glaze runs and makes content because it makes him feel good. He records the joy that he gets out of running, but he doesn’t shy away from the challenges involved with the sport. He relates to his audience, sharing his successes, failures, goals, and gear list. It’s as if it’s in his nature.
“I like to make (videos) because I want to be helping people,” he said. “I got into the fire service because I truly wanted to help people. I’m a paramedic and I’ve been on teams that have saved a lot of lives, and it’s very rewarding to do something like that, and likewise with the social media.”
Glaze explained he gets messages every day from people he inspired to start running and they’ve inspired someone else to start running.
“I’m not trying to make money. I’m just like trying to push good into the world because there’s so much negativity and there’s so much bad in the world right now,” he said.
“If I could just make the smallest amount of difference before I die, then I’ll feel like I can die happy,” he concludes. “As cliché as that sounds, I really truly believe that in the deepest part of my soul.”