Michael Chernow was in the middle of run when he came up for the name of his new seafood restaurant concept, Seamore’s. “I had been struggling with a few ideas,” says Chernow. “I was zoned out in the middle of my route and it just clicked. I wanted to say that people should be eating more well-sourced and sustainable seafood. On top of that it just sounds like the name of a sweet old man who you’d like to hang with. It was perfect.”
Clearly the venture worked, as Seamore’s is now opening the doors to a shiny new Dumbo location, in Brooklyn. Half of the duo behind of The Meatball Shop, Chernow is no stranger to stumbling onto game-changing epiphanies while pounding the pavement. “I came up with the idea for the Meatball Smash sandwich during a run,” he admits. Scores of late-night Manhattan eaters are grateful for that concoction — a sandwich made of two meatballs smashed inside a brioche bun along with a healthy array of toppings.
We recently caught up with the New York-based restaurateur before his morning run to talk about how the practice has elevated his health, his business, and his relationships.
How long has running been a serious part of your life?
I made a pivotal decision over a decade ago that I was going to be a better person and put aside the stupid shit that I had convinced myself was okay. I decided I was going to take life seriously, and appreciating it for everything that it has to offer. Running has helped me on the journey to accomplish just that.
In what ways has it done that?
I like the added benefit of staying fit, but the most important part for me is the element of it being a bit of a moving meditation. The practice keeps me grounded, both literally and figuratively. Some of my best thinking has come from long runs. If I ever feel the need to take a deep breath, I know it’s time for me to go on a run. It has been an amazing salve for the anxiety that I feel in this industry that I am in. I go for a run and I always end feeling much better. Not to mention I’m usually able to figure out a solution to the problem I’m having.