Tuesday, January 1, 2013

2012, a Wild Ride

2012 has been quite a year, far exceeding my initial lofty (at the time) ambitions when it’s comes to pursuing running more seriously.  After the 2010 Dallas White Rock Marathon, I spent nearly half of 2011 injured with a knee problem that kept me to limited miles, and spent the second half struggling to make it back to Marathon form.  For 2011 I completed only one half Marathon and a 10 mile trail race at Isle du Bois later in the year, so going from that to completing 7 Trail Ultras and a Trail Marathon in 2012 is quite mind-boggling.  I can still hardly believe I ran so much last year, over 1,730 miles total for the year, probably more running than my entire life put together in previous years.

I remember thinking to myself after reading “Born to Run” all those years ago, that there was no way I could ever run Ultras, and after such a lengthy injury following my first marathon, I doubted even more if my body could withstand such distances.  Thankfully, I recovered and became a stronger and smarter runner because of it.  I set a goal at the beginning of 2012 to eventually complete a 50 miler by the end of the year...ended up completing two 50 milers instead.  It hasn’t always been easy, the entire year has felt like a roller coaster of ups and downs; with the high's completing an Ultra, and with the low's of recovering from them, dealing with nagging pain, fearing my knee injuries would return, and struggling with balancing rest (burnout was a huge problem at times) with the need to constantly ramp up my mileage to meet my next Ultra feat. 

With each punishing Ultra completed though, my confidence grew with them, not just in my running ability, but in myself as well.  Ultra-running has done a lot in improving my outlook on life; completing such grueling and difficult ordeals that Ultra-running presents is something I really needed to experience, in an otherwise stagnant and suffocating life of boring work and routines; the comfort zone is your enemy.  2012 has been a wild ride, met lots of new friends and great and inspiring people along the way, and took on increasingly insurmountable odds...always finding a way to make it to the end, and in the process discovering a little bit more about myself that I never knew was there.  Here’s to 2013 and whatever new challenges await; first up is Bandera 50K, leading to what has really terrified me all year, Rocky Raccoon 100...can hardly wait.

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