A new leaf...?

This week I started running again, the first runs since the ENDURrun almost 3 weeks ago. Why did I wait so long? Well, the delay has been mainly due to injury. I had problems with my left IT band and right Achilles heel the whole time, and knowing my body like I do, rest and recovery is what is needed. I was itching to start running again after a week, but I knew that both injuries were not healed yet, and even when they do feel like new, it’s best for me to take another week. If there’s one thing I’ve learned since I’ve started running, is the more rest the better.

I’ve spent the downtime trying to decide on what to do next. I’ve four races as part of the RunWaterloo series left in the year, but they are for fun; I’m not trying to come up with PB times in them. However, I need some sort of goal run to get my training off the ground, and next year is too far away to think about.

Last week I had lunch with a friend, and she was telling me about her plans to run the Montreal half marathon in September and the Hamilton half marathon in November. She also asked me if I would be interested in running in the Hammer half with her and help her try and get a PB (personal best) time. The more I thought about it, the more it sounded like just the thing to get my motivation back.

This year has been a terrible year for me training wise. I’ve either had little time to put training in, or bailed out for various reasons (too tired, bad weather, etc.) Too many lame excuses to not go out. All this made the ENDURrun more painful than it should have been. Hanging out with the other participants all week has really helped motivate me to get back into running, or at least a regular training routine. Maybe not quite as intense as in 2009, when I ran a PB 3:27 in the Mississauga Marathon, then went on to my first ENDURrun and finished somewhere around mid-pack.

Ever since I ran my first marathon in 2006, I’ve tried to improve with each one, but not too much as to injure myself. My plan was to run two marathons a year (spring and fall) and try to improve my time by 15 minutes in each one. I did this very successfully until 2009 (the aforementioned Mississauga) where I jumped ahead over 30 minutes. That year, I also did my first ENDURrun, then the Scotiabank Marathon too soon after, and burnt out. After Scotiabank I took the rest of the year off, and the following year just couldn’t get back into running. That has carried over each year to the present. The want was there, but the will was not.

So what are my goals? What are my running desires?

  1. To run the Boston Marathon. My current qualifying time is 3:15:00; in 3 years it will be 3:25:00.
  2. To run another destination marathon, like Berlin or London.
  3. To run the ENDURrun and beat my 2009 time.

If I apply my marathon time improvement schedule starting next year, it would look like this:

  • Spring 2013 marathon - 4:15
  • Fall 2013 marathon - 4:00
  • Spring 2014 marathon - 3:45
  • Fall 2014 marathon - 3:30
  • Spring 2015 marathon - 3:15 (BQ)
  • Spring 2016 - RUN BOSTON!

Is it doable? I think so. But it will take a lot of work and dedication. I will have to do other things along the way, like change my diet a bit, do more core and strength work (weights, swimming), and stick to the training. Time will tell how successful I am, but I am feeling more motivated than ever to get back into the training.

Another thing that I’ve wanted to do is do more blogging about my training. One of my favourite blogs to read is Blisters and Black Toenails, by Phaedra Kennedy. I’ve known her for a very long time (elementary school), but only recently been following her amazing accomplishments with running. She’s also a great blogger about all her training and racing experiences. If my own blogging is half as good, I’d be happy.