New Year, New Goals: 2012
|January 6, 2012||Posted by Lauren under Motivation, Running|
One thing that is equally wonderful and awful about having a blog where you openly chronicle your running is that it keeps you accountable for your actions…both your accomplishments AND your failures. Even though I logically understand that no one really cares if I don’t run a certain number of races or get a specific PR but me, it still can be tough to publicly set the bar high and then fail.
But I also think that being open about your goals can be a great way to keep yourself accountable for them, even when motivation might be lacking a little bit. Plus it helps you track where you were and how far you’ve come. My big goal for this year was to run a sub 3:20 marathon, and I’m happy to say that I did it – twice.
So now, 6 days into the new year, it’s time to finally put my goals for 2012 down on
paper the internet. I have a feeling that it’s going to be a pretty fantastic year on all fronts.
The Main Goal
First and foremost, my most important goal for 2012 is to marry EC. This may not seem like it would be a very hard goal to achieve at this point, but let me tell you – figuring out a date is proving harder than I originally thought! No matter what else happens, if I get to the end of 2012 married to my best friend, I will be one happy girl.
Now enough with the sap. Let’s talk running goals, shall we?
Run a 3:10 marathon. Deep down inside I know I’d be happy with anything under a 3:15. But I might as well aim high, right? A 3:10 would be a pretty big PR for me (for comparison, I PR’d by a mere 9 seconds in my last marathon – this would be over 8 minutes!) but I think with some quality training and lots of dedication, I can do it.
Plus, Susan has a custom-made frame all ready for her post-Boston PR photo, and I really want to be in it with her.
Photo stolen from Susan
PR in the Half Marathon. My current PR was run in the middle of marathon training, through the snow, while I was sick. I’d like to think that in better conditions I have a sub-1:33 in me. And if I really train, I’d love to see a 1:30:xx (or below!) on the clock.
Run faster/PR in shorter distance races. I know I’ve mentioned before that I want to focus on other races besides the marathon, yet when it comes down to it, the allure of the marathon keeps drawing me in. Since I haven’t been able to give up on this torturous distance yet, I would like to train in a way that helps me get faster all around. I know I can’t expect to PR in every distance I run, but I would like to start really racing the shorter races, just to see how fast I can actually go.
Increase my mileage (slowly and safely) I’ve talked about how I used to run much higher mileage than I do now, but then had to back off because of how prone to injury my body can be. And although I still maintain that you can run a fast marathon without running 50+ miles and 6 days a week (my current marathon PR came off my lowest training mileage to date), I think every runner reaches a point where they realize they need to do more if they want to continue to get faster. I could tell during MCM that my endurance was not even close to where it needed to be for a 3:15/3:10 marathon. I think increasing mileage this training cycle can only help me run a faster this spring. And when I say increase, I still don’t mean anything crazy. You won’t see this girl running 70 or 80 mile weeks any time soon. But I would like to shoot for a couple of weeks that are close to/at 60 mpw. If I’m smart about it, I hope my body can handle it.
Run a competitive relay. My sweaty friend listed this as one of her goals for this year, and I need to jump on the bandwagon as well. I love the 200 mile relay more than any other race, and I have fun running them no matter how fast we go. But I’m a competitive person, and there’s a huge part of me that would thrive on being a part of helping a team place in a relay.
Hold myself accountable for each training run. I’ve never been great about tracking my runs. I know most runners are a bit obsessive when it comes to recording their data for each and every run, so I probably sound weird when I say I just don’t care all that much. I usually just make a training plan and then keep track of what I did each day by looking at what the plan said. Last winter I got myself into the habit of logging everything into Daily Mile, but then I just sort of fell off the wagon. This became a problem when I tried to look back at my last training cycle to analyze what I did (and didn’t do) and a lot of the data was missing. I am making myself stick to regular tracking this time around.
Keep strength training/core work a regular part of my routine. Though I’ll admit this has slightly less to do with helping me become a faster runner than it does with a certain exciting day that’s coming up. And there you have it – my vanity out in the open.
Become a certified running coach. This is something I’ve wanted to do for a very long time. The year after I graduated college, I worked as an assistant cross country coach and have been thinking about ways to get back into coaching ever since. I finally decided to take the plunge and sign up for an RRCA coaching class this spring. If all goes as planned, I’ll have my certification by the end of March!
Find a new job Yes, that whole job hunt thing is still ongoing. Luckily, recent events have made it look like I might get a few additional months at my current position (which makes things a little less stressful), but it’s still only temporary. By the end of the year, I would like to not only have a new job, but one that I actually love (yes, I know, this may be idealistic, but a girl can dream, right?). Bonus points if it helps me move out of Rhode Island.
Start actually saving money. I love running. And racing. And buying new running clothes. The problem with all that is that it’s sort of expensive. Since chances are I won’t be winning the lottery any time soon, it’s time to start redirecting some of those race funds into a savings account. Unfortunately, when you have some persuasive running friends, this is easier said than done.
So there you have it – my main goals for 2012. While there are a few other things that I’m hoping to get/do within the year, those are a little more out of my control. More than any recent year, I’m really excited to see what 2012 has in store.
And as for something that’s more short term – this weekend I’m running my first ever 10K. It seems weird to say that I’ve been running for over half my life and have yet to actually race a 10K. (Can you tell I avoid them like the plague?) My goal for the weekend: to not die. As long as I survive the race, it’ll be an automatic PR. Win.
What is the one goal you are working toward above all others this year?