Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Plans for 2012

With the start of the new year approaching, I've started thinking about goal races.  I'm already signed up and accepted to the NYC Half Marathon and I'm really looking forward to this.   I loved the NYC marathon and am looking forward to covering some of that course again with the half.  It also beats doing the New Bedford Half- not one of my favorite courses - on the same day :)

After some 'down' time this and last month - my body is in fairly good shape.  I have some tightness in my left calf and need to really get back to being more diligent with my corework but I think overall, I'm ready to go for the spring racing season.  Most importantly, I think my mind is recovered from a fairly roller coaster year when it came to running having dealt with a substantial injury and returning from that.

I officially signed back up with Fernando to start getting my weekly schedules again and I'm excited about it and excited to focus on running again.  I'm also happy to get myself to stop snacking on all the good treats that are still lingering in the house - especially the yummy frosted anise drop cookies!

In anticipation that this year with be another big year for marathon running, I asked Fernando what my best bet was for a fall marathon or if I should even been thinking of a fall marathon at this point.  I threw out either Chicago or NYC again.  I love both of these marathons but clearly NYC is a bit more convenient.  Fernando (FB) suggested and I agree that signed up for Chicago is my best bet in an effort to come up with what I hope would be a new PR.  I'm excited to have this long term goal and to really see where I can take my running this year.

I need to remember to do all the little things though to take care of my body so it doesn't desert me during the journey.  Bottom line, I'm excited to get the 2012 running party started!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Returning to Blog Again: Summary of Running in 2011

I was reminded of this blog today and realized I hadn't written anything this entire year.

Where to begin?  Well, I learned a big running lesson this year and that's to respect my body.

2011 began training for the 115th Boston Marathon, my third Boston and last - for awhile anyway.  I had a really good training for Boston last year despite the excessive amount of snow we had.  So when April rolled around I was really excited for Boston.  I knew I was going to have a great race.

However, Day 1 into the taper week, I started feeling some tightness in my left lower calf.  I blew it off as taper madness but it didn't seem to improve as the week wore on and Boston race day rapidly approached.  Being who I am, there wasn't anything that would stop me from running that race given I had qualified to get in with my current PR of 3:11:40, I got my under 10K race number and I was just euphoric with the vibe that comes from running this race.

Well, race day arrived and this tightness did not go away.  As a matter of fact, I felt pain for the entire race but foolishly, I did not stop despite seeing many medical tents along the way.  Miraculously, I earned myself a 3:16:56, a tibial stress syndrome and 10 unwelcomed weeks off from running.  I had never been so severely injured - never to the point where I couldn't even hop on one leg, nevermind run.

Well my husband earned his angel halo during those 10 weeks, I became reacquainted with my gym on the bike and elliptical and I learned that when something hurts, I must let it recover properly.    The remainder of my summer (the 10 weeks took me into June) was really getting back to where I had been pre-injury.

I had already decided to take a break from the marathons at this point (good timing).  So my focus was the Mohawk Hudson River Half Marathon in October.  I trained very hard for this race as, despite my injury, was looking to shave almost 3 minutes (sub-1:30) off of my prior half marathon PR (1:32:34).  The weather wasn't in our favor this day (80+ in early October), but I am proud to say that I was able to run a 1:30:37 (if only I could have found those 38 seconds!), a new half marathon PR.

Since October, I've run some fun, social races but really, looking back at 2011, this was a learning and recovery year.  I'm hoping that 2012 bring new, fun challenges at different distances.  Currently, I'm running but "resting" i.e. no intense speed workouts.  This will all change starting on January 2nd when I return to my regularly scheduled training with Coach Braz.  Happy Running to all in 2012!