Monday, January 2, 2012

2011 Recap and Goals for 2012

Well, 2011 is now behind me and I have to say that is was an amazing year for running!  I got pretty into the sport and realized really just how much I love it.  The year topped off some amazing accomplishments for myself.  I was able to set PR's in every distance  2:58:51 for the Full, 1:19:54 for the Half, 36:22 for 10k, and 17:37 for 5k.  I also was fortunate to win a marathon, half marathon and a few 10ks.  Throughout the year, I started running more and more and realized that running for me really became more about my love for the sport as opposed to racing and training.  I do love the challenge that races bring and getting to experience different courses and terrain, but just being out there everyday for a good amount of time is what really excites me.  I finished the year with over 3,600 miles, which averaged out to almost 70 miles a week.  In looking ahead to 2012, I have come to realize that I got a little obsessed with the mileage.  Sometimes, it was just fun to go out there and see if I could hit 100 miles in a week or something, which I did once this past summer.  However, I don't think that high mileage is necessarily optimal for achieving prime results when preparing for a race.  I have decided this year that I am going to try and focus on what is best when training for a particular race and not worry about missing a day here and there; taking a rest day or cross training more when the body is feeling worn down.  I think I will benefit more from that mentally and physically anyways.

For 2012, I have several races in the horizon that I want to shoot for.  First of all, I think I am going to scale my overall races back for the year.  Last year I ran 1 Ultra, 8 Marathons, 5 Half Marathons, 6 10ks, 1 7k, and 4 5ks.  That was probably a bit overboard in retrospect. This year I am going to put my overall focus on the Ultra.  Although, I still believe I have a lot to prove in the Marathon as well and that in some of my most recent performances, I have not fared as well as I would have liked.  With that being said, I am shooting for a couple of target races this year, some of the longer races (Marathons and Ultra's) will be used as tune-ups and some will be races I am shooting for.  I am going to ease off of the shorter distance races quite a bit this year and instead volunteer more at some of the local races (as I would like to try and give back more this year as well).  Here is a tentative 2012 race plan with some races that are already on the schedule and almost definite and the ones with a star are being considered.  Also, those in bold are target races.
January 7th-Yankee Springs Trail Run Ultra 50K
January 28th-The Snowman Half Marathon*
February 25th-The Ice Cube Half Marathon*
March 17th-The Shamrock 5k*
March 24th-Kal-Haven Ultra Marathon 33.5 miles
April 22nd-Glass City Marathon
April 28th-Running Fit Trail Half Marathon*
April 29th-Running Fit Trail Marathon*
May 5th-Indy Mini Half Marathon
May 6th-Kalamazoo Marathon (pacing 3:15 group)
May 13th-Ice Age 50K*
May 13th-Oaklawn Hospitality Classic 10k and 5k*
May 20th-Cleveland Marathon (pacing 3:15 group)
June 2nd-Yankee Springs Trail Run Marathon
June 16th-Kalamazoo Klassic 10K and 5K*
August 25th-North Country Trail Run 50 Miler
September 15th-Oktoberfest Spring Lake Marathon
September 22nd-Park to Park Half Marathon*
October 21st-Grand Rapids Marathon
November 3rd-Indy Monumental Marathon
November 11th-Valpo Half Marathon
November 17th-WMU Turkey Trot 5k
December 29th-Huff 50K

There are about 14 races that I am strongly considering doing and then the rest of them I am considering and more than likely will just do a few of.  The ones in bold I am going to be shooting for as target races with my main goal of the year being the North Country 50 Miler.  Kal-Haven is going to be the first one, which I am hoping to run in under 4 hours, but we'll see what happens.  Then, I would like to try and set a pr at the Indy Mini, but we'll see how the legs are feeling as I ramp up the mileage for the 50 miler. The 50 miler is my main goal as I hope to really gain some Ultra experience this year as I anticipate hopefully doing a 100 miler in 2013.  I would like to finish the 50 miler in under 8 hours and preferably faster.  It just depends how the training goes and how the body reacts to running that far, considering I have never done it; who knows I might hate it...which I probably will during the race lol.

2012 looks to be a great year for running and racing and I am hoping to learn more about my body and become a smarter runner.  I have always tried to keep in tune with my body to see how it feels.  I always have felt that that is the best way to prevent injury and insure that I can be out there as much as possible.  Besides all of the races and all of the training, I would also like to help out volunteering at the local races more, especially since I plan on putting a lot of the 10k and 5k races on the back burner in leau of the longer distances.  I can't wait to see what happens in 2012, but look forward to sharing it with great friends!

Quote by Anton Krupicka:  "For the most part, we exist in a numb, dead society. I’m doing my best 
to be alive and running in the mountains is the best way I’ve found to 
do that. And because I love the effortlessness that sometimes occurs 
while cruising down a cushy pine-needle singletrack or even while 
grinding up a switchback above tree line. I love how I can run up and 
into a mountain cirque or over a pass and be completely dwarfed and 
humbled by the sheer immensity and grandiosity of the landscape and I 
love flying down the other side with the breeze in my hair and the 
gravel in my shoes and the burning in my quads and the branches in my 
face and then when I'm finally all worn out there's nothing like 
peeling my shoes off and just sitting. Just being at rest. Running 
sharpens the focus on life and intensifies the emotions. Is there any 
better reason to do anything? "

1 comment:

  1. Hey buddy, it's was a great year with you and the rest of the CREW! Congrats on all you accomplished last year and good luck next year. I have a feeling the EPIC CREW is gonna turn some heads this year! Good luck at yankee Saturday!