Temptation or... What's Next?

I'm finding it very difficult to ignore the many Turkey Trots going on in the next few weeks, but I will because I've got no business going fast for the time being...

I'm looking at what comes next.... a recent commenter was surprised I wasn't going for a marathon again for another year, but I'm not at a point in my life where I want to "run" marathons - rather, I'm at a point where I want to train specifically for one and race it as hard as I can.

Looking to the next several months, here's what I'll be working toward:

1) A sub 20:00 5k -- I'm hopeful I can pull this off in the local Jingle Bell Run on Dec. 9. If I heal quickly, I should be able to. If not in December, I've got a 5k planned in a warm locale end of February. I was close six weeks ago, with a 20:11 that wasn't really an all-out effort. But who knows what my fitness will look like in a few weeks.

2) A sub 1:30 half-marathon. That's a mighty big goal, particularly since I'm thinking of trying to pull it off in April at the Runner's World Half in Allentown. But that's what I'm currently thinking. That would be a PR of 20 seconds per mile for me.

3) A sub 3:10 at the Steamtown Marathon next October. Life's too short - I think - to train for a year to take 4 minutes off your time. Now trading a year of your life for 9 minutes -- that's worth something to me.

Along the way, I'm going to try and do a bunch of trail races because I think I think trails make you stronger and I think overall strength will lead to faster times. But more on those specifics in another post.

Comments

  1. you've got it all lined up! love it ... they look like some good goals. i'm dying to try trail running too, but think i'll put it off till the summer - with 12 weeks to go till plan b, now is not the time to try it & trip on some root and twist an ankle.

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  2. Ambitious goals, but they seem very doable for you. The trail running is really a good plan - I'm going to start working in some hills to help me get stronger.

    Good luck in your training!

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  3. "a recent commenter was surprised I wasn't going for a marathon again for another year, but I'm not at a point in my life where I want to "run" marathons - rather, I'm at a point where I want to train specifically for one and race it as hard as I can."

    I wasn't surprised, really. I was just asking if you going to try again to qualify for next year's Boston.
    You imply that it's not possible to race more than one marathon a year as fast as one can.
    That's simply not true.
    In fact, the USA Womens Olympic Marathon Trials will be in Boston of April 2008, and the Olympics will be in Beijing in August.
    A couple of weeks ago, Gete Wami came in second in the New York Marathon 35 days after winning the Berlin Marathon.
    If you personally do not want to train for and race two marathons as fast as you can in one year, that's fine. That has to do with your own limits, whether they're physical limits or limits you've decided to set on training and racing.
    Similarly, just because I am running several marathons a year, that does not mean that I am not racing as fast as I can, for what that's worth, in most of them.
    I've run marathons at slower than my race pace, of course, as training runs or to be with friends and family members who need more time to finish.
    I agree that your listed goals all seem like good challenges that you will be able to meet. I'm guessing you'll find the 20 minute 5K pretty easy.
    Good luck!

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  4. Zanne -

    Yes, every time I fall on the trails - which is often - I tell myself I'm lucky I didn't break something. :)

    K-
    Hills and trails. Bad for the egos. Bad for the Garmins. Great for the body.

    Jerry -
    I tend to be a minimalist with my writing, but a. there aren't many spring marathons near me I'm itching to try and b. my kids are winter swimmers which puts a premium on weekend long run time over the winter.. add it up, and it's a fall marathon (probably.. I'm *kind of* looking at the National Marathon).

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  5. The Runner's Half in April...that's one I'm considering. Have you done it before?

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  6. Hey Marcus -
    I think Steamtown is a good call for trying to nail a wicked time next year. It is definitely much more BQ friendly than Harrisburg and you already have some experience under your belt. Make sure you get plenty of downhill training in so your quads survive.
    Best of luck with your 5k and 1/2 marathon goals.

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