“I’m loving it at the moment,” says Hansjörg Randl, sharing the philosophy that has always stayed with him: “Always take things with joy, even if the training is difficult and you’ve reached your limits.” The eventful life Randle chose. He is considered one of Tyrol’s most versatile and successful amateur athletes.
Whether it’s running, climbing or cycling – Randle is comfortable in many disciplines. In addition to countless state and national championship titles, he won the Dolomitenmann in team and individual competitions in 1990. At that time he was still an unknown amateur athlete. In an interview with ORF Tirol, he recalls this achievement: “He came, he saw and he won, as people told me at the time.”
He still looks back on this experience very fondly. “It’s also the one trophy my wife and I have ever looked for a sweet spot in the living room for,” says Randle. He will have countless trophies from Italy and other countries to show for it. But he practically put all these matters aside.
He’s not retired yet by any means
Hansjörg Randl was never a professional athlete. His day job was as a community worker. He also found or still devotes a lot of time to his sports. At 67 years old, a retiree is by no means retired. Extended bike rides and hill crossings are still included in the weekly programme.
“Especially when you are 67 years old, you have to make sure you maintain your flexibility and I just try to maintain it for as long as possible,” he is convinced of his sporting activity. “Because if it doesn’t work anymore, I’ll leave it alone,” Randle says. As soon as he notices at the top or on a ridge that he can’t do it anymore, he wants to stop. “If it’s no longer flawless and I’m not sure, I’ll turn around and stop.”
The book tells many experiences
The multi-talented endurance athlete recently wrote his first book with his wife Lizzie. It’s about beautiful moments, but also sad and dangerous on the mountain. Hansjörg said Lizzy wrote it: “You get to know each other and talk about what you’ve been through, and naturally, when you were writing, you went into more detail,” Lizzy says of creating the book.
Of course there were discussions too. “I said, ‘Go to the point,’” she laughed. “He said, ‘It’s crazy because I tell something in seven pages, and then when I read it, at the end there’s only three pages left.’” Still, everything that belonged to him was included.
“The book can be thick, and there are many stories to tell,” adds Hansjörg. But then his wife said that was enough, otherwise it would be endless.
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Bacon serves as a pre-marathon pick-me-up
Although he was never a professional athlete, he had some notable successes. He set many records that remained unmatched for decades. These include those in Karwendelllauf or Dolomitenmann. But he is not thinking about resigning at the moment. “I still enjoy practicing my sport with other people, teaching them something, and if they have any questions, they can come,” says Hansjörg after the climbing tour.
His creed has always been: “Clean the sport.” Before the marathon, he would sometimes drink a beer or two or eat a piece of bacon. “Some people will say, ‘He has a bird,’ but I think his body notices what it needs.” His body notices that it still needs plenty of exercise. In difficult rounds he continues to perform at a high level.
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“Of course I’m afraid for him, but this is his life,” Lizzie answers when asked how she is with her best athlete in her old age. She shows no interest in her husband. “What’s the point if he’s 70 or 80 years old and thinks to himself: ‘I wish I had done that?'” She doesn’t want to put any obstacles in the way of his future tours. There is no doubt that Hansjörg Randl, the unique “jack-of-all-trades” Of his kind, he’ll be off on a few more adventures.
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