The year is coming close to the end, and I’ve already been anxiously researching all of the races I want to run in 2014 (I’ve put my name in for the NYC marathon-please send good runner vibes!). I’m going to kick off the year with the P.F. Chang’s
Rock ‘N’ Roll Arizona Half Marathon!
This is my hometown so I’m SUPER psyched to run this race. Up until now, I’ve only had one goal for a race and that is to just finish. However, you are hearing it from me now: I want to finally break the 2 hour mark. The course is supposedly “flat and fast”, and I’m used to racing up hills in Northern California.
Obviously, you can never predict what may or may not happen on race day (nothing worse than having to make a porta-potty stop), or how crowded the course may be (this is a HUGE race). My half marathon PR is 2:06 (official), and not long ago I clocked an unofficial 2:01 half marathon on my Nike+ app…so I think I’m up for the challenge!
But this won’t be my very first race of the year. I’ve also signed up for my first shorter-than-half marathon-race, the Hot Chocolate 15K in San Francisco!
I’ve never run a 15K so a PR is guaranteed. Sweet. Like hot chocolate.
This race falls on January 12, the week before the RNR Arizona. It should be a fun and low pressure event-and a fun way to get in a taper run in before the big half!
I still have my sights set on a full marathon in the spring, but I’m really indecisive about exactly which race I will run. I’m on the fence about registering for the LA Marathon, as it may be just a little too early for me to be completely ready. But I’m not making any decisions at the moment, I’m going to listen to my body and go with what feels right (and keeps me injury-free!).
Today I was originally scheduled to run The North Face Endurance Challenge half marathon, but I decided to opt out the race. Recovery from the Nike Women’s (half) Marathon took a little longer than I’m used to, so I didn’t start training on trails as I had planned. I’ve talked a great deal about my running layoff over the summer, but it’s hard not to because it derailed a lot of my running plans and pretty much defined the second half of my 2013 race calendar. I’ve made so much progress after returning to running, and I’ve learned so much about training properly that I felt running a half marathon in the mountains unprepared would set my progress back again. Thus, I decided to put off my first trail race until next year.
Though I am a little sad missing the race…
…I feel really good about my decision. This past week has been one of my best training weeks to date. I set a new 5K PR on a training run (I’ve never run an official 5K, but I can see one in my near future), completed an 8 mile training run (the longest since the NWM), was able to make it to my favorite yoga class on Saturday, and-most importantly-I’ve regained confidence as a runner. After dealing with running layoffs/shin splints/obnoxiously tight IT bands, I can finally say that my legs are strong an injury free. I never set out to be the bestest/fastest/winningest runner-I just want to do what I love and and push myself to the best of my abilities.
Train smarter: run longer!
And I leave you with this random photo of my little family: