Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015 Wrap-Up

MMT aid station
As I reflect on the past twelve months of running, I can't help but be filled with gratitude.  No, the year was not perfect and I did not get to compete in all the races in which I intended.  Ultimately it went the way I expected though; maybe even the way I hoped.  This was my twelfth season as an ultra runner and I have certainly learned to expect the unexpected.  Injuries and life can alter the running equilibrium.  Balance in life and running is a hard thing to maintain.

Running the Massanutten 100 well was my number one focus for the year.  After tune-up races at the Frozen Sasquatch 50K, Thomas Jefferson 100K, and Promise Land 50K I was poised and primed for a good race.  Luckily, the plan worked and I had a very good run -- good enough for 4th place in 22:57.  This was my third MMT finish (21:37 '08, 22:39 '09) and I am proud to keep the sub-24 streak alive.

After MMT and the necessary rest and recovery, I set my sights on adding more speed training and quality workouts into my training. My focus in training was the goal of running sub-7:30 at Mountain Masochist (which would take some serious training considering that my PR there is 7:53).  Unfortunately I ended up getting injured.  First a nasty pulled hamstring, then a terrible case of plantar fasciitis -- which I am still nursing to a small degree.  Too much speed too quickly is a rookie mistake, but I certainly fell prey.  Regardless, in spite of many missed days of training, I still enjoyed some great running in the fall and even managed to race/run two sub-ultra distances for a change, the Iron Mountain 16-Miles and the Canary in the Cave 25K++. 

with Dan at the Promise Land start

Mileage wise, 2015 was one of my lower years; 2,205.  Even when I am healthy and training well, I simply struggle to find the time to train at the level I once did.  Once again, the balance between life and running is hard to maintain; it seems to get only more difficult with the inevitable increase of responsibilities.  I started keeping a running log in 2002 and I decided to add them up today.  It's pretty neat to see that I have run over 37K miles in my lifetime.  I am glad that I have taken the time to document all my training over the years.  I know that I won't be able to do this forever, but someday I will derive great enjoyment from reading these log books -- actually, I already have.

2002: 651
2003: 2,213
2004: 2,506
2005: 2,667
2006: 3,124
2007: 2,759
2008: 2,812
2009: 3,353
2010: 3,056
2011: 4,523
2012: 2,718
2013: 2,180
2014: 2,375
2015: 2,205
Total:  37,142 Miles

MMT finish with Clay

Racing Plans for 2016: (Very tentative.)  The only definite is that I want to focus on the Vermont 100 in July.  After getting denied by the Western States lottery now four years in a row (and two other times prior to 2011), I have two choices:  1) give up on the race  2) keep trying.  Might as well keep trying; eventually my name will get pulled . . .
I will likely run a few 50K's this spring in my build-up to VT, but I don't really have any plans for the fall. ??  Sometimes simply running as much as possible is enough of a plan for me.  The simple joy of the daily run is my favorite aspect of running/training and I hope I have many in 2016.

No matter what the new year has in store, I am thankful for my health, family, friends, and God's mercy and grace in my life.  Here's to a Happy New Year -- bring on 2016!


  1. Love reading about all of your running adventures!

    1. Thanks Lori. Hope you're doing well and hope to see you soon.

  2. Replies
    1. Happy New Year Kimba! Hope to see you at some point in 2016.

  3. Adam, Happy New Year to you and your family. Enjoyed reading about your year. I wish you the best for 2016 and I hope our paths will cross again soon!:)

    1. Thanks Chris. Happy New Year to you as well. I hope I see you again this year! It's been way too long my friend.

  4. Incredible!! As a numbers-obsessed person, I love the stats over the years. So very cool. Best of luck to you on the trails in 2016.

    1. Thanks Liz. I hope 2016 graces you with many trail miles on horseback. I really like seeing all your pictures and adventures.