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EB31: A Chat with Paul Smith IV – 2014 Texas Trail Running Series Sub-Ultra Men’s Champ

2014 was the inaugural launch of the the overall and age-group based Texas Trail Running Championship Series that included over 25 trail races from throughout the state. Over 450 runners from within and outside the state participated and scored points.

I thought it would be kind of fun to hear from our top finishers and learn about their birth story in this sport along with some memories from the 2014 Texas Trail Series.

Before we get too far into 2015, let’s get this rollin’! 🙂

Enjoy our chat with Paul Smith IV who won the sub-ultra men’s division in the final race of the season.


Musings include:

  • starting his joy of running in 5th grade
  • the not-so-enjoyable first marathon experience
  • biggest lesson learned in his early days of trail running
  • memories from first trail race at Rockledge Rumble
  • community, food, and beer
  • favorite local trails
  • training or racing?
  • favorite running books
  • why Isle du Bois was his most well executed race of the trail series
  • getting it done at the Brazos Bend Trail Run one week later to win the series
  • why his father was one of his top running memories of the year

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Resources and Goodies Mentioned




  • Slaying the Dragon by Michael Johnson – Michael Johnson stunned the world in the 1996 Olympics when he achieved what no other runner has ever accomplished, capturing two gold medals in the 200-meter and the 400-meter races and shattering the previous world record set in the 200 his own record by a staggering margin…In Slaying the Dragon: How to Turn Your Small Steps to Great Feats, Michael Johnson shares his secrets on how to identify your own dragon, your own fears and goals and how to apply his winning techniques to your personal and professional life.”
  • Run or Die by Kilian Jornet – “In his book, Jornet describes his record-breaking runs at Lake Tahoe, Western States 100, Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc, and Mount Kilimanjaro—the first of his ambitious Summits of My Life project in which Jornet will attempt to break records climbing the highest peaks on each continent.”
  • Relentless Forward Progress by Bryon Powell – “Bryon Powell has written Relentless Forward Progress, the first how-to manual for aspiring ultrarunners. Powell covers every aspect of training for and racing ultra distances. Along the way, more than a dozen elites and experts, including Geoff Roes, Krissy Moehl, Michael Wardian, Dave Mackey, and David Horton, provide invaluable advice on running ultramarathons.”
  • Running for My Life by Lopez Lomong – “Lopez Lomong chronicles his inspiring ascent from a barefoot lost boy of the Sudanese Civil War to a Nike sponsored athlete on the US Olympic Team. Though most of us fall somewhere between the catastrophic lows and dizzying highs of Lomong’s incredible life, every reader will find in his story the human spark to pursue dreams that might seem unthinkable, even from circumstances that might appear hopeless.”
  • Staying The Course by Dick Beardsley – “For a moment Dick Beardsley became the most famous runner in the world by losing a race. In the 1982 Boston Marathon, Beardsley, foiled by a motorcycle that cut him off, finished two seconds behind Alberto Salazar in one of the most memorable contests in marathon history. Staying the Course recounts that race and the difficult years that followed, including his recovery from a near-fatal farm accident, his subsequent addiction to painkillers, and a public arrest for forging prescriptions.”

Thank you so much for being a part of the EB tribe. If you enjoyed the podcast and feel others you know may be interested as well,  feel free to share with the social media buttons below. We really appreciate you.

Be active – Feel the buzz!

David –

[Hey EB tribe! This article contains affiliate links to Amazon which costs you nothing and provides a small commission to us if you would purchase a book through our link.]

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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