(no, I haven't made the pumpkin bread yet - the weekend got too busy, so it's on the agenda this week. However, if you DID make it over the weekend, let me know how it came out!!)
I have ZERO races on the calendar right now. Nothing I'm committed to. Zippy, zilch, nada. And it's freaking me out something fierce.
As I've started to re-aquaint myself with running post-Chicago, I've realized just how hard it is for me to truly engage in a run that involves more than a "picking flowers" pace without having a true race goal. I know there are a lot of people out there that can run for the pure love of it, and never feel like they need to "get" something out of it. That person is clearly not me.
Over the weekend I really started thinking about my race plan for 2012. The one thing I do know for sure is that I will continue with my run focus, meaning there is no Ironman in the cards for me at this point. I waffled on this for awhile, especially after racing Pumpkinman back in September. I was sure at that point that I wanted to switch my training to a multi-sport arena. And while that race was so much fun, and I know that triathlon does hold a place in my future, it's not now. I still have a lot of unfinished business left with running, and I'm not willing to move on just yet. I have a LOT of goals, especially with the half marathon and marathon, that I want to conquer before I start throwing a significant amount of swimming and biking in the mix.
Which leads me to figuring out how to structure 2012:
(1) a late winter/early spring marathon, followed by a late fall marathon. This would avoid any potential "hot weather" races, which would be ideal.
(2) a focus on the half marathon distance through the spring, get my PR down under 1:40, and then take that speed and apply it to a late fall marathon
(3) my traditional schedule, which involves a half in the winter, leading up to a April/May marathon, then repeating the cycle again, culminating at an October marathon.
So what does a Type A person such as myself do with this information? Put it all is a spreadsheet of course!
I am the proud owner of a 3-tabbed Excel spreadsheet, each tab with the above-referenced scenarios. On each sheet, I have listed out several races, location, cost, and average temperature. Yes, average temperature. Go ahead and judge me. I have small races, large races, local races, and ones that are not even in this country.
Have I made any decisions yet? Nope. However I least I feel like I'm more in control, and have the tools to make a race calendar that will help make 2012 MY year to excel at running.
I want to hear about everyone's favorite races - throw them all at me! Reading reviews on Marathon Guide is only getting me so far! Although beware, if I pick a race that's near your house, you may have company marathon weekend!