Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Gulp.

I decided yesterday that my goals for running this summer have changed slightly. My initial plan was to run a race a month now through the fall.

Taking most of the month of May “off” was not part of my “plan” and still my RT ankle is bothering me. Oh well. When I say off I have been rabidly riding the bike, doing the elliptical machine, running short distances, and lifting weights/yoga stretching/etc…

Now I plan to run as many races as I can between now and planned half marathon on November 3rd. I figure I can do the half marathon and a pile of races I skipped last fall around Thanksgiving/Christmas that I would like to do.

I never thought I would plan so far in advance for running. Sort of scoped things out through December! GULP.

Back to the real point of writing, I decided that I wanted to blow my PR in the 5k out of the water. I have been mucking around with ideas and thoughts about what to do next running wise. Trail running came to mind but I have no one to do that with and that is another potential pair/type of shoes AND another way to twist/ruin/injure my already painful ankles. I thought about another marathon. Again with the ankles.

The progression of this internal discussion went like this: self, what do you want to do with running? Wellll, I really want to get faster without getting hurt again and again. Self, where do you want to start with that? Wellll, I want to run a fast 5k and maybe start willing my age group again. I was winning my age group a lot when I first started running in ’09 but mostly I did not care. I rarely stayed for the awards as I felt I accomplished enough by getting a t-shirt and just getting my lazy fat post pregnancy ass to the race itself!

My current goal to accomplish is running a 5k at sub 22 minutes. I did 23:50 something in the fall so I know I can get down to a sub 23:00 but I feel like the sub 22 minute 5k will make this a great challenge for me. The main impetus behind this goal is that I start to train better and faster. I often let myself off the hook about running fast when I run on a treadmill. The device has typically caused me a great deal of pain/injury so I run slower and do not push hard on there. 

I plan to work on running outdoors as often as I can the rest of the summer. I ran WAY faster when I used to run all outdoor (summer/fall of 2009) and I actually ran a lot faster before I bought the Nike+. I won’t stop using the Nike+ but I will be less "tied to it" as far as speed and/or distance goes.

My second goal that I have been formulating for a pretty long time is the ½ marathon goal. I want to run 1:36.00 or better. I know I can do that on a flatter course AND my spending the next 180 days focused on the speed work for a fast 5k I am sure I can meet or exceed this plan. That is a huge leap from my fastest 1/2 of 1:52 I realize that but that time was accomplished in my first 1/2 when I had both the stomach flu, a bad case of the nerves and sheer will to finish.  I know I can do way better that the times I have done for the three halves I have run!

Finally at the end of the day, I want to have fun.  I liked running the marathon and I liked the training though at some moments it sucked.  Overall I feel I accomplished a huge goal and that was great. What I really want to get back to is the fun and excitement I felt about running the first year I ran with reference to both the training and the races! 

I am very excited about this plan. It is a good action plan. This is something I can see and taste and feel and that is the best kind of goal for me. If I just sit there and I just keep thinking 'I want to go faster' it won’t work for me.  I need to set something concrete to get where I want to go!

To review:

A 5k PR at sub 22:00 (by October 2012)
     See how many 5k races I win my age group
A ½ marathon at 1:36.00 or better (November 3 2012)

Gulp.

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