J. M. Thompson, PhD, is a clinical psychologist and ultrarunner. He completed his psychology training at the University of California, San Francisco, where he conducted research on the brain mechanisms of meditation and the physiology of trauma. He is also an ordained Zen practitioner and certified yoga teacher. He has finished over 40 ultramarathons, and multiple solo adventure runs in the Sierra Nevada, the Grand Canyon, and Death Valley. Thompson currently serves as a staff psychologist at the United States Department of Veterans Affairs. He lives in San Francisco with his wife and two children.