Friday, December 23, 2016

2016 Recap - Flying Through the Year in Racing

It's already time to wrap up another year. Time to review the ole spreadsheet and see what to make of the last 12 months.

Overall I'd give the year a B. A few big highlights. Some minor disappointments. A lot of fun though. Can't complain. Still love this running lifestyle. Life is good.

Saturday I will go to Austin to spend the rest of the year with family. Luckily, the weather looks favorable, so I hope to get in some good runs while I'm there. Projecting out, I should finish the year with about 1,330 miles, which would be my second highest since 1980.

My only serious injury was in January, when I strained my calf six weeks before the LA marathon and lost most of 4 weeks. Since then I've been running pretty consistently all year until taking some voluntary cutbacks in November and December.
I finished 15 races this year, tied for my high. But I've done 14 or 15 races yearly for six of the last seven years, since I started this blogging thing.

The first was the Super Bowl 5K, where I was testing my injured calf, but ended up finishing strong and getting 2nd AG with 21:02. run4
That had me feeling better about the LA marathon the next week. But I was still expecting to drop out or bonk hard after a 5 week "taper". But Loop magic appeared in the form of  about 20 Loopsters who came to town to watch the Olympic trials and run the race. I had the BEST time hanging out with them, and then race day brought a miracle despite the heat, and I cruised to my best marathon in 4 years and bagged a BQ in 3:31:32. Highlight of the year!
After that I switched my focus to speed. My next 7 races over the next six months would be 5Ks. I went to track workouts regularly, added more tempos, and kept my longest runs under 12 miles. I had one goal; to get under 20:00. I was close, but it never quite came together. Still, I was mostly content to be close. (If you like race reports, they are all linked)

March - 20:45

April - 20:51

April - 21:32  Tiny race in Kentucky netted 3rd overall


May - 20:15 Getting closer!

June - 20:10  Maximum effort wasn't quite good enough.


July - 20:40  Course record at least!


August - 20:27  That's as good as I am.


So I set that goal aside (for now) and did some other stuff. A one mile on the track? Yes, please! I managed to tie my old man PR of 5:52 even with leaving some in the tank.


How about the local 10K for the 16th time? Always fun. 44:28 was no AGPR but I was happy with the effort.


Two weeks later I dropped in a ten miler at Surf City, since Loopster Gwen was in town, so why not? Again I couldn't quite get to my goal time, but had to be happy with the 7:24 average pace.


And in my usual over-racing style, added a half two weeks later in LA. Things really caught up to me here, and I bonked hard to a 1:43. But I got to hang out with three angels, so it was all good.


So I started a plan to cut back for the rest of the year. But I still had three more races already scheduled for the next four weeks! D'oh!

I used the excuse of pacing to rein in my speed at the Philly half. Good plan! I had a great time running with Gwen and looping it up with dozens of the Loop's finest at LoopPhest 2.


Then the Turkey Trot 5 days later turned out great and I managed an actual 3 mile PR of 20:01. Apparently I was still in fine shape, and that helped me end the year feeling positive.

But first I had one more race; a ten mile trail race in the Arizona desert, which was all about having fun and enjoying running (But still pushing yourself and winning your AG).

az16 028

So now I am rested after some low mileage weeks, and starting Boston training. Looking forward to another fifteen races next year, many meetups and lots of good times. Merry Christmas to all, and Happy New Year! Catch you in 2017!

No comments:

Post a Comment