More than 1/6 of 2016 is behind us, so it may seem a little late to be setting my running goals for the year, but I think it's the perfect time.
This morning's run was definitely a turning point run for me. Yesterday, we hit a high in the mid 50's, today we're projected to be nearly 70. Yesterday, there was still some ice and definitely a lot of wet patches on the road to be careful of. Today, it was melted and the roads were clear and dry.
I've been running for 412 days straight now, so why would today make such a difference? I finally feel like I am going to be able to run outside daily again. No more (at least greatly reduced) treadmill runs. Last year, I absolutely loved the treadmill and hated the idea of running outside. On the treadmill, I could throw a DVD in and watch that to occupy my time. However, over the course of 2015, I really fell in love with running outside. When I was forced to go back to the treadmill for the brief winter that we had, I hated it. It's not the treadmill's fault - it was complete user error. I got lazy. I did my 4 miles a day, but rarely more than that and rarely at more than a power walk. Now that I feel like I can finally get outside on a daily basis again, I have a renewed sense of determination and with that comes new goals. Some of these have been in my head since the first of the year, some are new today, but either way, putting them out here for the world (or the 1-2 people that read this blog) to see, makes me accountable.
Marathon Goal: Sub-5 marathon
My current marathon PR is 5:14:52 at the Detroit Free Press Marathon last fall, so this is less than a minute per mile improvement to hit my new goal. Totally doable (I hope).
Target Race: Bayshore Marathon, May 28 (current course PR: 5:28:46)
Backup Race: Chicago Marathon, October 9 (current course PR: 5:17:11)
Half Marathon Goal: Sub-2 half marathon
This will undoubtedly be my hardest challenge this year, but it was also the first goal I set at the beginning of the year. My current PR is 2:18:24, so I'll need to shave more than a minute per mile off my time, but I'm optimistic. I don't see myself being a consistent sub-2 half runner, but would like to do it at least once to prove to myself I can. After a lot of thought into what race I will attempt it at, I think I have it figured out. I'm not sure of a backup yet and a lot can happen between now and September, but Running Flat is one of my favorite race companies (I need to do a blog post dedicated to them sometime - they are amazing) and their Run for the Heros Half Marathon in Amherstburg, Ontario is top notch. That race is where I achieved my first ever sub-3 half marathon and I would love to get my first ever sub-2 there as well.
Target Race: Run for the Heros Half Marathon, mid to late-September (current course PR: 2:53:53)
Backup Race: TBD
25k Goal: Sub-3 25k
This is HUGE! There is only 1 25k race I run, the Fifth Third River Bank Run. It has a strict cutoff of 3:30. I have run it twice and been allowed to finish both times, but I was between 3:30 and 4 hours each time, so I have never received an official time. I vowed not to go back until I could come in under 3:30 and not only am I shooting for that - I'm shooting for less than 3 hours!
Target Race: Fifth Third River Bank Run (because I have never gotten an official time, no current course PR (I didn't keep track))
Backup Race: No back up race - 25k is an unusual distance
10k Goal: Sub-60 10k
My current 10k PR is 1:03:55, so if I can get back into shape, I see this as a totally achievable goal. I don't run a lot of 10k's though, so my options for a target race are limited and not ideal conditions to shoot for a PR (crowded course or a night race on the 4th of July), but I'm still going to give it a shot. I can always add something in the Fall if I need to.
Target Race: Tinker Bell 10k, May 7 (current course PR: 1:08:38)
Backup Race: Ryan Shay 10k, July 4 (current course PR: 1:08:29)
5k Goal: Sub-30 5k
My current 5k PR is 30:55, so I'm right on the cusp of breaking this goal. I actually have one 5k time that's a few seconds faster, but it was not a timed race, so I don't count it. Unfortunately, most of my 5k's are untimed, so I have not decided which timed race to do to achieve this goal, but I will definitely be figuring that out soon.
Target Race: TBD
Backup Race: TBD