Looking ahead to my 2016 racing season, so many things are still up in the air. I usually have a pretty solid plan by now, and am typically already training for my next race. Why is this not true this year? I guess there are many reasons.
Ending the year with the one two punch of Chicago and New York, my body has felt a bit depleted. When you have no energy, and a lack of desire, it leads me to a oh hum attitude when it comes to getting signed right up for my next race. I just couldn’t find one that worked for my schedule and budget. Then I got sick, and have still not fully recovered. Still having problems and not feeling quite right going on three weeks now. It has led me to quite the laissez faire attitude. This is not good when it comes to having a rock solid plan for 2016.
I’m going to just roll with the punches. I do know this however. After spending the last five years running various races, I’ve learned a thing or two about myself and my running goals. Sometimes my goal is to run fast, set a PR, or even try for a Boston Qualifier. Sometimes not. Sometimes it’s about the experience. The race itself. Getting out there, testing myself, enjoying myself on the run. It’s not always about how fast you can go, or how far. I’ve learned I like certain races, and others not so much. I don’t just sign up for a race because I am a glutton. I’ve learned to be smart about where I spend my racing dollars.
I’ve also learned through the past couple of years that one of my favorite things to do is be a pacer. If not Boston material, I am certainly still a pretty fast runner. What most folks would consider fast anyway. What I do best I think is have a very consistent pace. Fast or slow, consistency is key when pacing. I can offer you that! Helping others reach a goal before my own goals is something I just never saw coming, but has been a welcome addition to my charitable life. Giving a bit of myself to others on the race course. I love it!
This leads me to a few races which are set in stone for next year. A couple of my favorite races, and races I will be pacing in 2016. Drum roll please……
In March I will be heading to Asheville, North Carolina to pace two events. Actually same event, two different races. The Asheville Marathon and Half at Biltmore Estate is a full on runners challenge this coming year. You can run the Half on Saturday, the Full on Sunday, or both! I am running both, and pacing both! I will be pacing the 2:00 Half, and 4:00 Full. How much fun does that sound? Tons!
In April, I will be heading back to one of my favorites to pace for the first time. The All American Marathon has been a trusted, awesome race experience for me the past two years. I’ve run the Full both years the race has been in existence, so on its third anniversary, I will be pacing the 4:00 Full. This will be my first marathon three-peat.
I’m sure I will do some more pacing in 2016, but those gigs are what I have lined up so far. I’m not sure I will even attempt a BQ this coming year. Right now just not feeling the need to put that kind of pressure on myself. 2016 is going to be about having fun, running consistent, and getting back to basics. Finding more joy out there on the road. Listening to my body, and smiling. If giving back to others through pacing is what gives me joy, I’m going to do even more of it.
What gives you joy this holiday season?