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Holidays, Revelations, and 2011

So I nearly killed a treadmill over the holidays.

After 10 days of road trippin’ through the frozen north visiting family, eating a variety of calorically dense and tasty food items, and sneaking in a few sweaty treadmill runs, the fam is back at the Texas hive. The return to sunny skies and 60 degree days – it’s good to be back!

So what about that treadmill?

The treadmill death was an intense moment at the in-laws abode. The middle-aged treadmill had a max speed of 10 mph and I was interested in running some intervals at its limit. Within 30 seconds time I had killed it and had to act quickly to bring back the pulse (lights and power). I reached for the AED unit (power switch) and gave it a quick toggle zap as beads of sweat dripped down my forehead. Those electrolytic droplets were not from the internal heat generated during the previous three miles but from the terror of having to announce I killed the treadmill to my wife’s family.

Within a few seconds that felt like days, the pulse returned and full functionality resumed…but no more 10 mph intervals. Yes, I briefly killed the treadmill but was fortunate enough to help bring it back to life. It was a runner’s Christmas miracle.

Looking Back on 2010

2010 was one of those frustrating and insightful years for me in my running journey.

The year started off on a high note as I finished my first 100 km adventure at Bandera in January. Great race! Great times! Based on my goals for the day, it was a near perfect race besides not having enough warm clothing options for the last few hours of the race. Lesson learned – Fatigue and cold-to-the-core is not a good combination for me.

Nursing a slight knee tweak from Bandera, I held onto the thread of hope that I was ready for my first 100 mile attempt at Rocky Raccoon. After 76 miles of gradual physical breakdown, I was done. Mentally in great shape, the knee had other thoughts and I had to agree.

The southern blizzard run at Grasslands in March was an extreme volunteering experience. Wind, rain, sleet, nasty clay, and a group of smiling and inspiring runners getting it done.

I somehow was able to move (walk/jog) 50 miles in May when Lisa Smith-Batchen and team rolled into town for the inspiring Running Hope Through America adventure.

The remainder of the year was low mileage knee tweakage recovery as I ran 785 miles for 2010. My weekly mileage danced anywhere between 0 – 20 miles throughout most of the year after Rocky.

The biggest self-awareness lesson realized by the end of the year – Endurance capacity can be fully expressed only if you have the strength and structural integrity to support it.

Running my way into 2011

In six days I will run the trails that cracked through my strength and structural weaknesses one year ago – Bandera. The 25 km run will be the perfect adventure to kick-off my return to racing and test the knee.

The rest of the Spring season will be determined by the Bandera experience along with a month-by-month assessment until I can confidently say the knee is 100% (currently in the 90-ish range).

Training this year will be based on the lesson of 2010 and will turn my usual training schedule upside-down. To start off the year, my basic schedule will include:

  • 3 days of running
  • 4-6 days of cross training
  • daily mobility work

Hopefully, this will create the overall strength and structural integrity to support my run. We shall see…

Regional Racing

The number of trail/ultra events in the TALON (TX, AR, LA, OK, NM) region continue to grow on a monthly bases. The current TALON Race Guide has 119 events inside!

Most of the regional races exist in the Fall/Winter/Spring months with a few available during the get-your-sweat-on months. Many of the summer events take place when the sun is sleeping so temps can cool down to 90 degrees or so. 😉

If you are looking for a local race, be sure to check out the guide.

Have a Great Year

I want to wish you all a great 2011 filled with health, happiness, and many running adventures.

What are some of your fondest running memories of 2010 and what running goals/adventures do you have planned for the new year?

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.

2 Responses to “Holidays, Revelations, and 2011”

  1. on 06 Jan 2011 at 9:23 pm Harold Neiper

    Happy New Year David! That is funny about the treadmill! I’d be sweating bullets too.

    My fondest memory is finishing my first marathon in San Antonio (4:03). Plus getting to run with my kids for part of it (while my wife took pics) was awesome too – they were proud kids. Then only to beat that time by 5 minutes three weeks ago in a training run which was 40 percent trails. Good times!

    2011 brings in a whole bunch more fun and challenges for me. The biggest personal goal I set is to run a sub 3:30 marathon which I am sure I can accomplish – didn’t set the bar to high I think but only time will tell. And so far the plan for this year includes Big Bend 50k (next weekend), Austin Marathon, Prickly Pear 50k, and then Hog’s Hunt 50k. Of course that only gets me through April. Heck who knows what the rest of the year holds – maybe even a 60k or 50 miler – building towards ultimate of 100 miles. Oh, almost forgot – should be getting some running action in Australia at the end of this year too.h

    Anyhow, hope the knee gets to 100% soon.


  2. on 10 Jan 2011 at 2:45 pm David Hanenburg

    Hey Harold – Happy New Year! That is a great San Antonio marathon experience. It is always neat when the kids can get involved in some way.

    Good luck with your busy Spring. I look forward to hearing about it. Australia should be epic!