Happy 2017 friends! I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season. Things here have been mostly wonderful. After the New York City Marathon, I took a good month off. Two weeks of no running and another two weeks of low motivation sprinkled with 2-3 milers here and there. Then of course, December being December, running was there but not on my high list of priorities. We did however end my running year on a fantastic note.
My son, Matthew, and I ran the Surf-N-Santa 5 miler here in Virginia Beach. So…much….fun. J&A Racing organized the Worlds Largest Santa Run and we met the Guinness Book of World Record goal! In order for each runner to count towards the official Santa numbers they had to wear a five piece suit (Beard, Hat, Shirt, Pants, & Belt) that were included with race entry. Needless to say the entire race was hysterical. Matthew and I ran with my closest friend and also a few other groups of friends along the way and I couldn’t stop laughing at us all in these fat suits. At Mile 2 there was a gingerbread cookie stop and later in the race there was a Candy Cane lane. We loved it and running with Matthew, who ran all but a few steps at a water stop, was something I’ll cherish forever. I see it as a Mom/Son tradition for years to come.
Seeing as how most bloggers (am I a blogger if I only write 6 times a year?) are writing their goals for the year, I feel the need to add mine. My running goal this year is simply to race as well as I train. While I had a fantastic 2016, one that I am proud of, I never finished a race feeling as though I lived up to the level I was at during the actual training cycle. I’ve been doing this marathon thing long enough to know what workouts should result in what goal time and honestly I was in much fitter shape than I showed at New York. I could blame it on wind, nerves, solo running time, excitement, etc. but truth is I just should have tightened my laces and ran tougher. As for Spring 2017, I have some great races lined up to keep challenging myself.
January 14th- Distance Series 10 Miler
February 26th- Colonial Half Marathon
March 19th- Shamrock Marathon
March 26th- Seagull Sprint 1 Mile. <- Excited to Co-Direct again! Not racing.
May 20th- Brooklyn Half Marathon
Can I have two “A goals” for Spring? Well, I do. The Shamrock Marathon is my main training goal but the Brooklyn Half is close as well. The Full is my favorite distance and Shamrock is a race that is close to my heart so there was no doubt in my mind I’ll be chasing a PR there (as long as I can stay healthy.) The Shamrock course is easy to mentally break up, easy for spectators, easy for logistics, plus I’m surrounded with an amazing training team, friends family, and Coach. Plus I always love their swag. 😉 I didn’t want my season to end there though. I’ve been wanting to break 1:20 in the half for ages. Not sure if it will be doable with time off after Shamrock but at the very least, I wanted to put myself in a highly competitive race to aim for it. Last year 18 women ran under 1:20 at the Brooklyn Half. I love that and am really looking forward to running in NYC again.
I do not have anything set in stone for the Fall, but am leaning towards California International Marathon, in case any friends are thinking of the same. I would love to hear from anyone else running it. Its the last of my personal Fall U.S. bucket list marathons since I’ve done Chicago, Twin Cities, Philly, Seattle, & New York. More suggestions welcome!
Now the not so wonderful news. In December we said goodbye to our incredible dog, Buddy, who was almost 16 years old. Saying goodbye to him was easily the hardest decision I have ever made in my life. The kids were so brave about it all and I put on my bravest face but was a wreck. Steve was an awesome rock for us. I hesitated to share on here but he was one of my first running “Buddys” and I’ve mentioned him quite a bit on this blog. I still get super emotional about him. I even choked up at a grocery store when I saw his special food for sale (He was on a sensitive stomach diet so I rarely saw it in stores). It’s the little things but I am truly grateful that we were able to have him in our lives for 15 years. We adopted him from the SPCA when he was a year old and he traveled the country, living with us in 7 different states! He will always always be a part of our family even if he isn’t with us. One of our last photos-
Now back to running specifics. Workouts have been going wonderfully. Last week was my first official training week back. This week being the second week was a bit rougher as the legs start to feel it but it feels great to be back in the marathon grind. Here is a quick look at what I had and have for this week-
Monday- 10 miles easy (snowed in, on treadmill)
Tuesday- 8 total, 4 mile tempo in 24 minutes flat (again snowed in! treadmill)
Wednesday- Last day on treadmill, thank gosh! 10 miles easy, last 400 at 6:00 pace to mimic some striders.
Thursday- 2.5 mile warm up, 4 X 1 mile (5:39 average) 2.5 mile cool down.
Saturday- 10 Mile Distance Series Run. No goal pace, just see where I am at.
Sunday- 14 miles very easy.
If you are local to Hampton Roads, Direct Performance is hosting new Sunday morning group runs at 7 am at their Great Neck location. I plan on getting quite a few of my long runs in starting there. Have a fantastic week friends! Happy Training!