Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Just Running

That's all I've been doing, just running. For several weeks now I've been hitting the pavement 3x a week and averaging 15-18 miles per week. I tried running two days in a row a few weeks ago and my ankle was extra sore so I backed off of that for a bit. I did do a Monday morning and Tuesday night back to back and that seemed to be alright, but there is really nothing exciting happening from week to week. It is time for a shake up. I need a race to aim for and I need to switch it up on some easy, dirt trails or I'm afraid I'll just get rusty and complacent. I think I've been afraid to race because I don't want to put up a crappy time because I'm not trained enough. I don't know if that's what will happen, but I've come to my senses and remembered that running isn't just about fast times for me. I was also afraid that if I tried to just "run" a race instead of "racing", I'd push too hard and hurt myself again. I think I'm past that point now and I'm ready to get out there and set a baseline for myself to improve on. I've been tracking my runs up to this point, but not really paying attention to times *that* much. I've been happy with my splits at times when I noticed I was running under 8:00/mi, but not unhappy when I saw 9:30 either. 

Enough of this post-injury state, it's just an excuse to not move forward and push myself - it is time to move forward. 
Here's what I'm thinking loosely for the next few months:
-I just discovered the Navesink Challenge 15K in Middletown, NJ on the Sunday after Thanksgiving which is only 35 minutes or so from my Mom's house, so that's an option. 
-In Dec I'm running the Pete McArdle 15K in Van Cortlandt Park so I need to start easing back onto the trails. There's also another NYRR 15K in Central Park that I may run if I can't find another good 10 or 15K in the area. 
-In January I'd like to tackle a half marathon, not a goal race (too damn cold for asthma girl), but for the distance. I have a strange attachment to the always-below-20-degrees Manhattan Half Marathon, but we'll see. 
-Ultimately I'm looking to maybe do a spring marathon in 2012. I always thought I'd never run one because winter training scares me, but I feel like I missed my entire season this year and I want to get an early start next year so I can dive right into open water swimming season in the summer. If you know of any good marathons in April, perhaps in the MD, VA or NC area, please let me know! 
The other big thing coming up is registration for the Manhattan Island Marathon Swim Relay! We submit our application for a 4-person team on Dec 1st!  The race is August 4th, the day before my good friend's wedding... which I'm in!  Talk about a busy weekend! I passed up my automatic entry for the NYC Triathlon next year though, the price just keeps rising and it seems silly to pay almost $300 for an Olympic tri when there are plenty for less that are also smaller. We'll see if I have time for an Olympic next year, I may be doing so much swimming and running that I'll just have time for a few sprints. 
Speaking of running, I'm headed home to do some speedwork with my Inwood crew tonight. Thank goodness for this amazing weather! Congratulations to all of my rockstar friends on kicking ass at the NYC Marathon this past weekend, it was a blast to finally get out there and spectate! Just watching gave me the marathon bug, I want to RUN! 

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