Mornings with Kristen Herrmann

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A Long Way From Nowhere is a documentary about athletes that go the extra mile…er um… 150 miles. Ever hear of ultra-marathoners? (Who are those people, amirite?) Well, I went to high school with one of these gluttons for punishment, and he’s coming back to our home town in Reading, PA as the subject of a fascinating documentary about his “hobby” this Saturday. It’s called A Long Way From Nowhere, and it follows a particularly grueling 150 mile race in the desert. Not only the desert. The desert… in the height of summer… during the day. The film gives an in-depth look at the race itself, but also a personal look at the individuals involved. The participants who are just bonkers enough to run it. Participants like Phil Pinti.

  • Phil Pinti

    Phil Pinti is originally from Reading, Pennsylvania in Berks County. He went to my high school, and graduated Exeter Township Senior High School in 2001. He’s a West Chester University alum and now resides in Ellicott City, MD with his 10 year old daughter Penelope and his 8 year old son Nolan. And he’s one of the subjects of a new documentary called A Long Way From Nowhere.
    Phil Pinti's Beautiful Family

    Phil Pinti and Kids

    Phil Pinti and Two Kids


  • Ultra Marathons

    As far as exercise goes, most of us are happy to fit a few miles into our daily routine. I myself am proud whenever I do anything physical at all. To me, doing anything ‘more than nothing’ equals a win. Then there are the regular 5k and 10k runners. Go-getters. Marathoners are next-level impressive. Those folks absolutely earn those 26.2 magnets on their cars. Here’s where things get super human though. Take those 26+ mile accomplishments and multiply them almost 6 times over. 150 miles. Add in desert heat. That’s Phil Pinti’s wheelhouse. He thrives in these conditions.

  • Homecoming

    Ultra Marathons are races reserved for the most elite athletes among us. The elite of the elite. The races are intense and punishing, and super impressive. Miles upon miles, and in some cases while facing extreme weather conditions. And Phil is a pretty impressive person without all that too. A widower and single father of two. A U.S. Marine Veteran, and an adventurer. He’ll be back home in Reading this weekend for a screening of this fascinating documentary.

    Phil Pinti US Marine Uniform Phil Pinti US Marine

  • A Long Way From Nowhere Trailer

    Don’t miss this intimate look into his life and the athletes of this grueling 150 mile race through the desert at the height of summer. I’m uncomfortable just watching the trailer. It’s so impressive.

  • Saturday's Screening

    Phil will attend the screening and be joined by Connor Moriarty, licensed professional counselor and founder and director of Reset Outdoors for a post-screening discussion.

    Watch it this weekend in Reading, PA. The documentary screening and discussion is being held at Goggleworks in Reading (Berks County) this Saturday, from 12pm-2pm presented by Boscov Theater.

    Saturday, April 29th from 12pm-2pm.

    Goggleworks: 201 Washington St., Reading, PA 19601
    Doors open at 11:30am.
    Tickets are $5 and can be purchased HERE.
    Concessions, including wine and beer, will be available.

    Phil Pinti in A Long Way From Nowhere

  • Here’s What Chris Ward, One of the Filmmakers Had to Say About the Film:

    “Once you find yourself out in the middle of nowhere with no distractions doing something really challenging, humans tend to come together. We wanted to show that goodness and how ultrarunning brings that out of people. So many films focus on the elite athletes, but we wanted to show what was happening in the back and middle of the pack- Why is this a meaningful thing for them to pursue (and use a week of vacation time on)? What deeper reasons are people exploring as they battle the desert? What are they trying to process and what lessons do they take away from an experience like this? What is the interplay between those lessons and their everyday lives? With grit, determination, a fair share of stubborness, and the ability to endure the highs and lows, seemingly regular folks (who are anything but) can power through whatever life throws at them. That’s what ultrarunning is and that is why I love this sport so much!”

    Phil Pinti Runs Desert Rats Race

  • Film Description

    What compels a person to run 150 miles through the desert at the height of summer? Is it the need for achievement, the competitive instinct, or something deeper—a spiritual need for hardship, for catharsis, and from it, healing? A LONG WAY FROM NOWHERE is a different sort of extreme sports film—one centered not around winning or extraordinary spectacle—but instead one focused upon the human spirit—on why individuals, knowingly or not, seek out some of the harshest climates on earth—in this case, the southern Utah desert in June—and push themselves to, and sometimes beyond, the breaking point. Amongst the disparate cast of characters in this film are a veteran, a single father, and two sisters—a detective and a reporter. Each undertakes the 150-mile Desert Rats stage race, each reaches their darkest hour, and each, through the curious alchemy of extreme hardship and desert solitude, emerges with a new understanding of what it is to be human.

  • Watch The Full Film

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