Thursday, November 13, 2008

Summing up 2008's Running History

It's been hard to maintain my motivation/mileage but I've just about completed a whole year of running/races without a break. As you can see from my blog, I used to just average 1 little race a year. I don't believe it was until I finished my first trail run, Tecumseh, that something hit me...
I could actually keep running year round and I would therefore never have to "train" for a long run. I would keep my endurance up and forget about the 18+ weeks of training for one yearly marathon. Brilliant.

So, that's the plan that Chris and I have stuck with this past year and after Tecumseh, we will have completed 10 races in 2008. Our plan worked, but with a downside to it.

We ran a race almost once a month of marathon+ distance and then ran shorter runs in between.
This was great and definitely took off all pressure and nerves that you get before a run. Normally if you only train for one big race a year, you're so pressured to do well during that run that if you don't, you'll hate yourself forever.
  • That's what happened to me after my first marathon in 2004, the Chicago Marathon. I expected to run at least a 3:30 since that's what I had trained for. I was so pressured to keep that pace and so worried about it that I had negative energy and ended up running a 3:47. After the race, I was disappointed with myself for a long time.

So anyway, the downside to Chris and my plan was that we didn't put too much mileage in inbetween the races. I don't think I ever ran more than 10 miles at one time inbetween the races- maybeee 1-3x at most. On the other hand, that's what worked for us. We're both busy people (like everyone else) and for me personally, having an intense weekly running schedule was not my top priority.

I don't know what 2009 will look like. The majority of the races in 2008 were all new to me. What do I do next year, just run the same ones again? Is that as fun? I know you'd recommend me to find other races elsewhere, but I am trying to save a little bit of money. Sheesh.

Right now I'm pretty sure I'd like to run a 100 mile race, perhaps the Mohican Trail Run next summer. If I'm cutting back on the number of races I do (although I haven't decided that for sure), that means I'll be forced to discpline myself to get in the miles and train. Dangit...then here comes that pressure I talked about again- Training for one big race.

We'll see. We're still in November and who knows what's to come...heck, I could break my ankle and be screwed for the next 5 years for all I know.

1 comment:

Sensationally Red said...

Wow..you are such a serious and talented runner. I've had a horrible time with the sweets lately...I've been hitting the Dum Dum lollipops pretty hard at work. Whenever I do that, I try to balance it out by eating something really good for me like salmon...or blueberries like you mentioned! Don't be so hard on yourself. It's all a balance act!