Running Resolutions

It has been a solid eight months since my last post. The good news is that my running and training did not get as derailed as my blogging. And now it’s that popular time of year when we all put our foot down to make a change. I bet you think I’m going to resolve to blog more often? Well, we all know that resolutions don’t work if they’re general. You have to be specific in order to be successful. Suffice it to say that after an eight-month absence I hesitate to commit to any sort of blogging resolution. I also won’t be making any running resolutions. Instead, I will continue to make running, training and triathlon goals. They are specific, measurable and achievable. Resolutions stand to be broken, set aside in favor of other things, are avoidable with any number of excuses. Goals, on the other hand, require commitment, planning, dedication and determination. You might argue that there is no difference between a resolution and a goal. And that’s fine. But should you choose to make a running resolution, I implore you to make it specific and realistic.

2011 Running Goals

I loved 2010 for a number of reasons, one of them being that I completed the half Ironman that I set out to do. But I did not achieve all my running goals of 2010 and so one of my plans for this year is to set myself up for success rather than a frustrating, overbooked schedule. I have a modest number of races on the calendar, all at distances I can realistically train for. I completed a number of races in 2010 at the top of my age group and while one goal might be to set out for a first in my age group, I instead will train simply to achieve a new PR; and if that happens to land me age group placement then that will be a bonus.

My first race will be the B&A Marathon in Annapolis in March. It was the first marathon I ever did and this year my goal will be to comfortably run the 26.2 miles and hopefully break four hours.

I will be doing the Cooper River Bridge Run in April, my favorite 10K and a tradition with friends and family. This year my husband has set out to beat me, something he has done every year we’ve done the race, except for last year. Last year I made my goal to run the 6.2 miles in sub-8-minute miles and I achieved that goal. I will train for the same pace, or better, and remain confident that my non-runner husband cannot match my pace. You may see some guest posts from him as he chronicles his training and I wish him the best of luck in his efforts. We love each other dearly and we are also just a bit competitive…so this should be fun.

In May I am signed up for the  Columbia Olympic Triathlon which will be a new race for me. It will also be my second Olympic distance and I would like to finish in under three hours. I know that the course is difficult and I am excited for the challenge of doing a lot of hill training.

The other races on my 2011 list fall under the categories of ‘plans’ rather than ‘goals.’ I suppose my new year’s running resolution is to set my goals in small chunks so that I can focus on doing just a few things really well before moving on to new goals. I learned from the tough mistake in 2010 that when I lined up a full year of goals, I didn’t allow for life.  I don’t regret that “life got in the way” and I gained the important lesson of balance.

Will you be setting running resolutions? Or goals? Or both? Share them here. Commit. Be specific and be realistic.

Happy new year!

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