Training update, and some out-loud thoughts about humility and the importance of being humble

The transformation has begun.

My legs are trashed, I’m tired, and I’m still trying to wrap my head around the distance I will run in a few weeks…BUT I’m also getting stronger, faster, and more confident in my own abilities. Training is one evolution after another, constant destruction and rebuilding back up stronger to achieve a better version of what existed prior. This is a process that is not only physical, but mental, emotional, and even philosophical/spiritual to a degree. A grueling path paves the way for a moment, that special moment…. 

Chuck Palahniuk once said of perfection: “A person had to work hard for it, but a minute of perfection was worth the effort. A moment was the most you could ever expect from perfection.” 

While I’m certainly far from perfect, the point I’m trying to make is that while everyone has their own way to get there, as athletes we’re all ultimately searching for our own little “moment” to be the best we can be and overcome what is seemingly impossible. That said, I’m doing everything I can to show up to Utah the best and most fine-tuned version of myself I can be. T-minus 38 days and counting…..

Aside from the physical rigors of training, I’ve had the pleasure of making several amazing new friends this year who continue to inspire me and embrace each other’s “good crazy” eccentricities, as well as the love we all have for pushing ourselves through the sport of running. It’s wonderful to network with other athletes and develop new opportunities. In addition, it’s always nice to gain new perspective and formulate new opinions as the sport continues to grow and expand. 

Perhaps one of the most important things I’m taking into this years journey is a renewed awareness of humility as it relates to how I conduct myself on and off the trail. I have a more thorough understanding of what I believe to be innate aspects of trail running like minimalism, respect for the environment, and modesty when it comes to my attitude and accomplishments. While I’m grateful for the experiences I’ve had thus far, they have afforded me to see things I like and don’t like about the sport. If one thing is for certain, it’s that everyone can benefit from toning down their ego from time to time. To elaborate even further, I’m starting to identify less with the term “ultra.” Yes, I run distances beyond 26.2, but when I refer to myself as an “ultrarunner” I am essentially saying that I am something beyond a runner. The fact of the matter is I’m just a runner. “Ultrarunning” implies doing something beyond running. Not sure what that would be…flying or levitating perhaps? Just my take on it. 

In conclusion I’m happy to be starting a new chapter and excited for what lies ahead. I’ve got a few more tough weeks ahead followed by a smooth taper into the race. This will be my first time to visit Moab and I hear it’s gorgeous so I couldn’t be more excited. That area of Utah typically has pretty mild weather in the late spring time, so I’m hoping for ideal weather conditions come race day. Before I forget, I’m gonna be trying out and reviewing some new footwear in the coming weeks so make sure to check back for that. 

May your trails be happy and healthy,

 

Adam

 

First race of 2014

First race of 2014

I enter 2014 with a renewed sense of hope and focus. While 2013 left me tattered and war-torn, I have had some time to recover and consider my direction going forward. I’m another year older, another year wiser, and another year more seasoned at a sport that I adore.

That said, I’ve got my eyes set on my first big test of the season. I had ran a Gemini event back in October and had a great experience with them, so I’ve decided to return to them once again for their 24 Hours of Utah event in March. I’ll be running a 100K on a beautiful course in Moab. I’m fired up and ready to return at peak form.

My training regimen is significantly different this year, as I’ll be placing more of a focus on the anaerobic side of things this year to include high intensity interval training, tempo/pick-up runs, cross-fit, and essentially any other high intensity cardio-pulmonary exercises. I now realize it’s not just about mileage, but also about pulling everything I can from my endurance and will. I want to be a better and stronger athlete “overall” as opposed to just being able to run far. In a recent interview ultra running great Hal Koerner discussed how he still does various non-running related workouts such as push-ups, sit-ups and plyometrics because he believes that it takes a strong person “overall” to run 100 miles….that it’s the culmination of strength between all muscles and body systems that allow someone to successfully complete that distance. I agree completely and that is part of my strategy this season.

I’m also happy to have made friends with the good folks at Denver Run House who are hosting “Bergen Peak Sundays” that are open to anyone. Pat is a great guy and I had a blast this past Sunday. Bergen Peak is one of my favorite places to run and I’m sure the company will only get better. I anticipate being in peak form by March, weighing significantly less, and having some killer cardio.

I can’t wait to get out to Utah and deliver a performance I know I’m capable of. See you in March Gemini Adventures!