Wrapping up the year and looking forward…


December is the final month of the year.  2013 will be over in just a few weeks.  Where did running take you this year?  Where will running take you next year?  Make no mistake about it, runners everywhere are checking those goal sheets, reviewing plans, and reflecting on the year.

Whatever your goals were for the year, did you meet or exceed them?  I surpassed my goals for the year.  For that, I am thrilled.  I made it through my 2013 running season injury free.  That really is what I wanted most.  To use the knowledge I have gained from running over the past few years, and use it to my advantage.  Running smart, listening to my body.  Resting when necessary, going hard and all out when it counted.  I succeeded.  As I sit here and contemplate new goals for the new year, I can’t help but reflect on this.

Listening to my body, and taking care of it.  Carefully training, treating my body well, really does pay off.

To date, in 2013, I have run over 1,100 miles.  I ran 16 races.  Two 5k’s, nine Half Marathons, and five Marathons.  I competed hard, ran the best races I could.  I challenged myself with new goals, and set a new marathon PR.  So much to be proud of.  Now where do I go from here?  What have I learned about distance running?

I really learned that running a 26.2 race is now my new favorite.  It used to be the 13.1, but the challenge of the marathon really grabbed my heart this year.  I enjoy all distances really, as they all are unique in the challenge they provide to me.  The Marathon, however, gives me the most self satisfaction.  Learning this about the marathon this year, has really changed how I view running as I go forward.  Running marathons is no easy feat.  It takes a lot out of you, and is very taxing on the body.  Because of this, I know that if I want to run more marathons, I need to cut back on the overall number of races I run next year.

As of right now, I have plans for 5 marathons in 2014, in the first five months of the year.  Charleston, Hilton Head, Wrightsville Beach, Raleigh, and Fayetteville.  I will probably throw in a few 5k’s along the way with my boys.  I also have plans to run my first 10 mile race in April.  A new distance to try, and a guaranteed PR.  My older son has decided that he wants to run his first Half marathon next year, so that will be really great.  Helping him train, giving him advice, and watching him shoot for a new goal.  A huge goal!

After running 9 Half marathons this year, it feels strange not to have any on my schedule for the first part of 2014.  In fact, the only Half I have planned so far for next year isn’t until October.  Hum…  Wonder if that will change.

All I know is that 2014 has a lot in store for me.  I still love running, and plan a tackling new distances, bigger goals, and new races.  2013 was a success, and starting this blog half way through the year, has really helped me to record my memories.

I hope you have enjoyed my running ramblings.  I really enjoy reading the posts, memories and teachings of other bloggers as well.  I really have learned a lot through other runners.  So, I will keep blogging, and keep reading.

What do you have planned for 2014? I hope it’s an epic year for me, and you!