With Donna over, my 2017 race season has officially started. I have at least one race each month through November. I guess December and January are my “off-season.” We’ll use that as the excuse for the weight I gained over the holidays.
I’m still trying to figure out my focus for the year. My first triathlon of the year isn’t until May, but I’ve been swimming, biking, and running through the non-triathlon season because a) I don’t want to lose fitness and b) I’ve discovered that I hate running four or more days a week. I’ve really been focusing on increasing my bike fitness while simply maintaining on my swim and my run.
But as you might expect, the added bike focus has also led to some improvements in my run. For both Space Coast and Donna, I didn’t feel incredibly well trained. I was running about twice a week, one run in around 4-5 miles and the other a long run, increasing up to 11 or 12 miles. The point of the training was really just to get me through the race comfortably, because I was just running for fun, not to try to set a new PR.
And yet, both races went really well. My half marathon PR is 2:48:33, set at Shamrock in 2012. At Space Coast and Donna, I ran a 2:55:14 and a 2:56:56. Anyone who has worked to cut time from their races can look at those times and say “Yeah, that’s really far off of your PR.” And in many ways, that’s true. But in 2012, I was run focused. Shamrock, which was in March, was my 4th half of the year. I was running a lot. I was also pushing for a PR. At Donna, I stopped for a bathroom break, chatted with some friends, and did a shot of Fireball. Clearly not a PR race.
I guess what I’m saying is that I’m really pleased with these race times. I’m doing something right in my training.
But triathlon season is looming, so I’m going to have to start putting even more focus on my biking and swimming. This year, I’m stepping back on the distance and focusing only on the Olympic/International distance. I loved my 70.3 last year, but I felt like all I ever did was train. This year, I want to have more time to volunteer at races and cheer on friends and strangers. I also would like to get more sleep. And you know, maybe have some non-training fun in there too.
At some point, I’ll probably push to improve my half marathon PR. Just not this year. This year is for fun. And maybe a triathlon PR.