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The Ultrarunner’s Heart


All ultrarunners know the significance of the fist sized cardiac muscle that supports our every stride. Without it, well, you could forget about that weekly long run and anything else for that matter.

As we take a stride deeper into self, heart becomes a pointer to the etheric components that we all possess deep within our being. These non-physical components have the potential to provide significant cerebral nourishment and butt-moving momentum to assist us in whatever ultrarunning adventures we may seek.

I will group these components into what I will affectionately call the ultra heart.

Components of the ultra heart

  • Passion
  • Perseverance
  • Tolerance
  • Compassion
  • Acceptance
  • Gratitude

What is the role of each ultra heart component?

  • Passion to do the hours of training and arrive to the start line before the sun rises.
  • Perseverance to keep moving even when the legs aren’t interested in running any longer.
  • Tolerance to find a way to manage discomfort.
  • Compassion to support the other runners with a “Goo-shob” as they pass.
  • Acceptance of what your body is able to do on the given day.
  • Gratitude towards the volunteers, your support network, and your own body’s ability.

Similar to the physical heart adapting and becoming stronger after being exposed to a stress (such as running), the ultra heart has the ability to grow and strengthen with use. This can have a positive impact both on and off the trail.

It may appear ultrarunners are simply running for some mentally deranged distance but underneath the running shorts, trail shoes, gaiters, headlamps, and Hammer gel, lies a unique opportunity to develop as a person.

Be active – Feel the buzz!

David –

(Photo: Courtesy of / CC BY 2.0)

About the author

David Hanenburg David Hanenburg is the passionate dirt-lovin' creator of Endurance Buzz and has been playing in the endurance sports world since 2000 after knockin' the dust off of his Trek 950 hardtail thanks to a friend asking to go ride some local dirt. In 2007 he ran his first ultra on the trails and fell in love with the sport and its people. For more information on David's endurance sports journey, check out the About page.

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