When I set out in January to keep an eye on my goals, I had planned on doing it monthly. January, check, but February was pure chaos, so I’m using the close of March (out like a lamb, right?) to reflect on both months and the first 25% of 2011 coming to a close.
For those of you who missed it, I came up with seven points for my 2011 goals and hope to keep on top of them until I achieve them (or in perpetuity, as appropriate).
- Mileage – Consistency was my goal here; having seen 200+ mile months and < 80 mile months in 2010. I’ve been a little inconsistent week to week, but on a monthly basis I’m doing pretty well; 117 in January, 108 in February, and 117 in March. Which is pretty damn consistent when you account for the three less days in February and the fact that I took two big vacations that month1 Without looking at long runs and rest days, that breaks down in to 3.77 miles per day in January and March, and 3.85 in February. Righteous. And I’m sticking just above my 104.131456 targeted average for the 2011 kilometer challenge.
- Race Weight – I haven’t been very consistent in the Friday morning weigh-in, but I’ve been hitting the scale every weekend. Up until these last couple of weeks where I had to travel to Philly for work2 and tacked visits to both my parents and my in-laws on to the end.
I still haven’t figured out a good way to chart “the feel” aspect of things, but weight wise I’m holding steady. I’m pretty sure I’ve put those initial five pounds back on while working from my parents’ house3 but I’m hoping when I get back to a scale it won’t be too terrible. I’m considering it a success to have hit both Ottawa and Maui without packing on vacation weight.
On the other hand, I’ve been seriously slacking on weight training, so there is 0% muscle weight going on here. If I can run Sunday’s half marathon without feeling like a cookie in shorts4
- Cross Training – Fail. Straight up. I ditched the Active.com plan in January, but didn’t keep the weight training going. I went from twice per week to once per week, maybe, to none all too quickly. I have got to pick this back up. My wife has started doing Zuzana’s workouts from BodyRock TV, so if I don’t step it up I’ll be left even more in the dust than I already am.
On the plus side, the yoga has been keeping up well. I’ve missed two days so far in the past 71, but have otherwise done at least a short routine every day. The improved flexibility is awesome, and I can feel myself able to recover from hard workouts much more quickly, but it’s only part of the cross training equation.
- Water – The 100 ounces continues to be a non-issue, but I still start my days with too much tea and end up tail-loading. This is a really hard habit to break, especially on chilly mornings!
- Workouts, not just runs – I’ve been doing much better with this, making almost every run a workout. I’ve gotten to the track in Ojai a couple of times for some good speed workouts, including the Lactate Repeats from HellaSound, which is an awesome workout that really helps keep the effort going.
With my wife’s help, I’ve also done a couple of strong longer tempo runs, along the beach, with my wife pacing me on her bicycle. It’s awesome to have someone other than your own mind pushing you. Now the challenge is to internalize that and remind myself of what I’m capable of sustaining in a race. “No squealing, remember that it’s all in your head.”
- 19:00 5k – Still no attempts at a 5k or anything on the calendar. The few near us just didn’t work out schedule-wise. It’s almost spring though, and we’re just about ready to leave Ventura county, so I ought to be able to find something to target in Oregon or Washington.
- 1:32 half marathon – Further consideration of the Rose Bowl Half Marathon shook my grasp of reasonable race pricing. I just couldn’t bring myself to spend $140 (plus $10 parking) for a local race. And the travel gods had me in New Jersey during the Great Race of Agoura, so that didn’t happen, though race reports that I’ve read make it sound like I missed out on an awesome event.
But, I am just three days away from my first attempt at this goal. At the end of the family visits, I’m heading to Newmarket, NH for the Great Bay Half Marathon before hitting MHT. It’ll be training prep versus cookie sabotage, but I’m hoping for a strong race. I’m certain I can pull off a 1:45, I’m confident I can get close to 1:40, 1:37:11 will be a PR, and a 1:32 will make me very happy indeed. Best of all, some friends from the area are running it and/or cheering, and my in-laws are running the 5k with my wife, so it will be the first race I’m running where I know more than one person in the crowd.
Round two is scheduled for the week following; on our way from Ventura County to the San Francisco Bay, we’ll be stopping in Paso Robles for the Wine Country Half Marathon. If I fall apart in NH, I’ll hold back and make it a final long run before CA. And because I’m foolish like that, I might just keep the half marathon streak going and try the Western Pacific Half Marathon the week following Wine Country.
And somewhere along the line I need to consider whether I want to run the Tacoma City Marathon as my tenth marathon, do the half as a four-in-a-row streak, or try my first duathlon at the Mount Rainier Duathlon. A lot will depend on whether I reach this 1:32 goal at Great Bay or Wine Country. (I’m not counting on a strong performance on a third consecutive half…)
More importantly, I need to chill out.