A few years ago I started the new year with three goals:
- Run 1000 miles
- Sub 1:45 half marathon
- Run my first marathon
I finished the year with 963 miles, a half marathon PR of 1:46, and a torn calf muscle that forced me to defer my marathon. It was an amazing year of running (well, except the injury) but I felt so frustrated and so disappointed. When it came to setting goals for the next year, I stayed away from numbers and told myself, nearly daily, to “run more and don’t get injured.” I loved it and it has become my new goal setting strategy.
I still have some time related goals, but they now tend to be huge multi-year goals. Goals that will take multiple training seasons to accomplish. I also set race goals throughout the year, but these are based on how my paces and mileage are going in training, not on an arbitrary number chosen January first.
Which leads me to my mantra/goal for 2017: want it every day.
I was hoping to structure 2017 with a spring half marathon and spend fall preparing for marathon #2. But I can not get any of the local halves to work with my schedule. March is too early and the June one conflicts with a friend’s wedding. I also am not in great shape right now, so a lot would come down to how quickly I can bounce back from running a measly 28 miles in December (less than my usual weekly average, ha!).
With no major races on the horizon and a new semester already under way, it would be easy to lose sight of my long term goals. That is what happened this fall. A few months of cutting back is not a big deal in the grand scheme of things, but I don’t want the next four years to turn into a major break from running. I could spend the spring focused on shorter races, but I need to be focused on building endurance not speed because…
The second part of my year is going to be focused on preparing for marathon #2 (Disney World Marathon. Birthday Marathon. One year away. January 7, 2018). I want to be ready to PR. And if all goes well, I hope to be ready to BQ (and make the registration cut off). Which is why for the next year I will be reminding myself daily that if I want to crush my huge running goals, I’m going to need to want them every single day.