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“If you will call your troubles experiences, and remember that every experience develops some latent force within you, you will grow vigorous and happy, however adverse your circumstances may seem to be.” – John Heywood

  • Wet, goopy, shoe sucking clay
  • Take your shoes off to scoop out the clay that had oozed into them
  • Clay caked legs, shoulders and backs
  • Find a rhythm – forget about it
  • Two steps forward, one step back. Mile after mile after mile.
  • Periods of heavy rain
  • Periods of sleet pelting you in the face like shotgun bbs.
  • 20-25 mph wind gusts that took your breath away
  • Temps in the low 30s
  • A day of trail running.

Where was this? Colorado? No, Texas of course. This was the Grasslands trail run.

A group of amazing souls and myself helped at the Red Ant aid-station which was the 10 mile point for the 50 milers, and 3.4 miles to the finish for the marathon and 1/2 marathon course.

Besides freezing our butts off, we witnessed this surprising display of Attitude – the good kind. With conditions about as ugly we see in this part of the country, we saw smiles, laughter, acceptance, perseverance, focus, and courage, in nearly every runner that came through our aid-station. This was for the runners at the front and the back.

First time trail runners – First time marathoners – out there getting it done. Nearly every set of eyes we looked into had this amazing fire burning…and a few probably wished there actually was one to warm up to every now and then.

Come on people – bitch a little bit. This display of amazing attitude was almost…strange. I am sure there were choice words for the day but there was virtually no talk of surrender.

We did have one guy call us “the devils” for convincing him to finish the final 3.4 miles of the marathon. After a bit of conversation, refilling his bottle, and loading up a cup full of M&Ms and pretzels, we kicked him guided him out our aid-station and he went on to finish.

In a day that warranted no one to show up, multiple hundreds of runners started this day of experience and created memories and maybe even some self-growth they will never forget. I was honored (with frozen toes and fingers) to be a small part of these amazing runners experience.

Attitude really is a choice.

Running is way more than just running, whether you care to see it or not…I saw it.

Be active – Feel the buzz!

David –

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.

5 Responses to “Attitude”

  1. on 22 Mar 2010 at 10:41 am Blaine Moore

    Nothing to bitch about in the present means nothing to brag about in the future.

    I actually prefer these sorts of runs. Good experiences all around, as long as you don’t lose any fingers or toes.

  2. on 22 Mar 2010 at 11:14 am Patton

    You are my sinsei for manning the aid station. It was an epic day to say the least. That adventure will not be forgotten soon. Place and pace were completely irrelevant. Effort and perception were everything. Kudos to the RD and the awesome volunteers.


  3. on 22 Mar 2010 at 12:18 pm David Hanenburg

    @Blaine – So far I have heard on no lost appendages. 😉 A good friend is still working on getting the normal sensations back in his toes though.

    @Patton – No worries. It was an experience all involved will not forget for some time.

  4. on 22 Mar 2010 at 12:20 pm Porta-pot bob

    I just took my shoes and my wife’s outside in the driveway to hose off from the race….took the inserts out, and there was 1″ of clay in the toe area of all 4 shoes. Maybe that’s why the running stores have you go up 1 size for running shoes…to account for Grasslands. All I could think about while looking at that muck all day, was how much it resembled brownie mix. Needless to say, I baked up some brownies last night to celebrate!

  5. on 23 Mar 2010 at 8:40 am David Hanenburg

    PPB – You should have just tossed the shoes into a Kiln and had yourself some sweet flower pots! Next time…