It seems a lot of people don't like writing or reading year in review posts. I enjoy them. I enjoy them much more than a weekly post about how many miles I ran and where (like the very short-lived "Weekly Rundown" posts I tried out...see below). I love learning different approaches--especially when it seems that one can 'go down the rabbit hole' and get super duper technical, with phrases like periodization, LT, Tempo, Fartlek, Taper, Recovery, Nutrition, Gear, etc. Then there's the "In order to run longer and faster, one must run more and and at a faster speed. I like that too, and probably even more!
So, how did my 2011 go? Here you go:
Another year, another lack of a sub-3-hour marathon. I tried in StL in April but very unaccomadating weather and a much hillier than expected track derailed that attempt. I'm just proud of myself for finishing (in 3:18)... and also conceiving my second child, due any day, that weekend.
Ice Age went better than expected. I ran 4:05 for a new 50k PR and finished 5th. I way overate and overdrank early and ended up puking with 9 miles to go, but then passed 2 people in the last 9 miles to finish 5th. I look forward to going back, and really look forward to running the Ice Age 50 miler, as the 50k course has a 9 mile loop that you do twice. Not as much fun as single track. Still, I want to go back and run better there.
The rest of the spring and summer was spent with an eye on the Fall 50. My serious training started with a great trip to Colorado, running along the CDT and loving every second of those mountain tops. My heart aches to go back. Cheesy, I know, but it was truly amazing.
I ran the North Face 50k, and was in second for most of the race. I was really pushing the envelope and crashed pretty hard in the last 9 miles to finish 3rd in 4:06. Again, I want to return to this event, but probably to the marathon.
Finally came the Fall 50. that was awesome. My overly optimistic goal was to keep an 8 minute pace for the entire run. I ended up keeping an 8:07 pace, finishing in 6:46 and 5th overall. I also used this as a fundraising effort for the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight and raised over $3,000 in the process. Win/Win. I really ran this race well and had such a wonderful time with family and friends that weekend that I feel like I could run that event every year and enjoy it. But...
I also love the Glacial Trail 50k that starts and ends about 10 miles from my house. I ran this race in 2010, finishing 3rd. I want to win this race some day, and maybe 2012 is the year I do win it. In 2012, it's the same week as the Fall 50, which means my 'goal race' of the fall will probably always be either the Glacial Trail 50k (always the second Sunday in October) OR the Fall 50 (always the third Saturday in October). So, maybe this year I run Glacial Trail and then run the Fall 50 as a team. Who's in?
The more I learn about running, the more I want to lower times and finish higher in the rankings. I've won one marathon and would love to win a 50k. I have no false opinions of my own abilities, so it would take a lot of luck to win one (i. e., nobody fast shows up, AND I run well on that day). In 2012 I'd like to PR in the 50k trail. I'd like to keep my training simple (as in, run more, but keep the runs enjoyable). I'd like to run more in the mornings too.
On that last one, I'm going to NEED to run more in the morning. As I mentioned, Ellie and I are literally days away from Edwin's sibling's arrival. If I'm going to get any miles in, it's gonna be in the mornings. The evenings are way too busy to try and fit in running on top of everything else.
On that note, it's time to sign off. I need to go running in the morning!