Greetings from Minnesota. We had snow all day, and it’s the kind I love. Small, white bits fell lazily from the sky, and the accumulation was next to nothing. Perfect.
Tonight, it’s time to talk running.
Throughout 2011, my running consistency can best be described as a roller coaster. In March and April I was running well over 100 mile months when I was in the midst of marathon training. I think my mileage hit a new low in hot, sticky July when I barely topped 30 miles.
At the start of 2011 I had a rough goal of running 850 miles. At this point, I think I will be happy to beat last year’s total of 743.
I probably could still get to at least 800 if I really had to. But… It seems silly. I’d certainly risk burnout or injury from ramping up too much, too fast.
Instead, I have a different resolve for December. I plan to run or workout 5-6 days a week for the rest of the month.
I’m running about 4 days a week right now plus doing a bootcamp class. I think I can reasonably add a few days if I’m diligent. I’m also hoping this gets me set on a good schedule to keep running through the winter and train for an April half-marathon.
I’ll let you in on one of my 2012 running goals early. I really want to train hard enough (and smart enough) to break 2 hours in the 1/2 marathon.
As I learned with the marathon this year, strong base mileage and long-term consistent training can be just as important as the official 12-week (or however many) training plan.
Specifically, I’ve been working in a tempo run of at least 3-4 miles just under 9:00/mile pace each week. I want to ingrain my goal pace in my legs so strongly that I could run it in my sleep. And I want to run it often enough that it feels easy.
Of course I’m doing some faster runs and speedwork too, but I’m convinced that goal pace runs will be crucial in reaching my 1/2 goal next year.
Switching gears, I have one race goal left for 2011. One more 5K, and it’s coming up this weekend. With very little snow on the ground, I have hopes of running a speedy race. Maybe even beating my hard-won 23:48 PR from September.
This weekend does bring a chance of snow, but I think I will race regardless. I’m nervous because I’ve hardly run at all in snow yet. I’m know I’m not nearly as sure-footed in the snow as I’ll be at winter’s end.
If the roads are clear and dry, I’ll run for a PR. If they are wet and snowy, I’ll run strong and careful. Either way, I will finally get to run a race in my Team Refuel (with chocolate milk) gear! I will probably need a few layers under the short sleeved tech shirt.
So how am I doing on my December running goal so far?
In a word, good. I did bootcamp Thursday, and I ran Friday, Saturday, and Sunday for a modest, yet solid 10 miles.
Today was a needed rest day, but tomorrow morning you’ll find me on the treadmill.
Any races on your schedule yet in 2011?