Mind over matter...Never give up

Sunday, January 8, 2012

2012 Race Calendar and 2011 Year End Summary

Happy 2012!  I usually reserve my blogging for race reports, but in the spirit of setting some goals for 2012, since that’s the thing to do as we end one year and begin another, I thought I’d do a recap on 2011 and a preview to 2012.

2011, let’s review….

I had a few running goals in 2011.  One was to PR, and maybe even run a sub 20, for the 5K.  And the other was to do a half marathon in under 1:35.  I achieved the half marathon goal in March, at the Wrightsville Beach Half Marathon.  A great race and a great mini vacation, a PR and sub 1:35 half.  The 5K goal took a bit longer to achieve, mainly because of the lack of 5Ks in the summer.  I ran a few in the spring and did well but had to wait until the fall 5Ks came around to refocus on this goal.  In the meantime, while I not only didn’t PR but actually ran my worst half marathon in recent history, I had an excellent vacation in California at the Napa to Sonoma Half Marathon.  Great location and great event, I’d like to try it again sometime when I am more prepared.  I refocused on the 5K goal and entered my favorite fall 5K, the Run for Healthier Babies.  But just so I would have a “practice” race, I also entered the Run for Autism.  Turns out I pulled off the sub 20 in the autism race.  I think running more often in the mornings combined with losing a few pounds, the right racing shoes and Zensah socks really helped me to make the leap from a 20:34 PR (Mar 2011) to a 19:55 PR in October.  After similar sub 20 success in the Healthier Babies race I decided to do the Second Empire Series and ran all but one of my fall 5K races in under 20 minutes, proving it wasn’t a fluke afterall.  My current PR is 19:29 in the Jingle Bell 5K.  Another goal I added later in 2011 was to run under 33:30 in the Turkey Trot.  I did better than expected and finished in 32:16.   

Looking ahead to 2012…

I set out with an aggressive race calendar for 2012 when I was originally thinking about it a few months ago, but had to cut back on it some since it was obviously too much to do in one year.  As of when I am writing this, Dec 29, 2011, the only races I am formally registered for are the Umstead Marathon on Mar 3rd and the Biltmore 15K on May 20th.  Unfortunately due to what I really believe was a non-running related Christmas present wrapping calf injury, I am a bit worried about my ability to be ready for Umstead Marathon in time.   I’ll just have to take it easy and see how it goes.  I wasn’t even able to do 6 miles without lots of pain and stopping earlier this week, but rested 2 days and did 3 today with some, but considerably less, pain.  But I was able to do 18 with no trouble in Umstead including Turkey Creek only a few weeks ago, so hoping that this calf thing doesn’t set me back too much.  I would like to run Umstead in under 4 hours but we’ll see how it goes.  It’s not a BQ race and I’d be doing it for just the fun of doing it.  But I don’t want to suffer through it either, so hopefully this injury will heal fast and I’ll be back out there soon.  As for the Biltmore race, I am also excited about that one.  It’s a great course and a fun trip to Asheville and Biltmore.  So far that’s all that is officially on tap for 2012.

Umstead Marathon

Biltmore 15K

Still of course there are some other races I am pondering…
  • March – Run for the Oaks and Second Empire 5Ks.  I’ve done both of these for several years now and I like them but I’ll have to see how I feel after the Umstead Marathon.
  • September – Provided I am in town this time, I’d really like to run the Magnificent Mile, which I’ve never run before.  I’d like to get some speed work in over the summer to train for it.  I'd also like to do the Friesen Run with the Canes again.
  • October – Either the Army 10 miler if we can get an RTR crew to go, or the ATT 10 miler locally.
  • November – City of Oaks Relay, again if we can get an RTR relay team together it would be fun.  And of course the Turkey Trot, maybe the Surfside Beach one this year instead of the Grand Strand Myrtle Beach one. 
  • December – This one really will depend on funding to be able to travel to another race, but I’d like to do the Kiawah Island Half, if not this year, maybe the following year.  

Looking REALLY far ahead to 2013 and beyond some other races I’d like to do are:  
  • Big Sur Marathon in California
  • Covered Bridges Half Marathon in Vermont
  • Oregon Wine Country Half
  • Chicago Marathon
  • Outer Banks Half 

Well that is enough dreaming about cool races for now.  Happy New Year to you!  I wish you a 2012 filled with beautiful trail runs, exciting road races and an injury free year of achieving your goals, whatever they may be! 

P.S. - Update as of Jan 8th, 2012 – I did a 22 mile run today, and felt pretty good so I am feeling better about the Umstead Marathon.  I also have a new mantra to use, thanks to my son Owen’s Tae Kwon Do instructor.  “Goals I set (sir) are goals I get (sir)!”.  I’ll probably leave out the “sir” part but it got me through the last few miles today!

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