Is it too early for New Year’s Resolutions?

Thanks for letting me whine the past few days.  This community is so wonderful and so supportive.  After much counseling from you all and from my trainer, I think I’ve got a game plan for next year that’ll make me happy, not burn me out, and hopefully keep me injury free.

So, I’ve been doing some reflecting on the races that I choose.  I’ve come to learn that as much as I love the challenge of a half-marathon, I don’t know that I’m meant to do a lot of them (at least at this time).  I remember a post from my friend Lee when he talked about being a 5k-er.  That is HIS distance.  Sure, he can do half marathons and marathons (and is a total beast at them!) but in his heart of hearts, he loves a 5k.

I don’t know that I feel a strong pull toward any one distance, but I do know that I’m not defined by the distance that I do/do not run.  Any distance at all makes me a runner.  I just have to decide what keeps me happy AND healthy.

So, I think my strategy at this time will be to do no more than 2 half-marathon’s a year, and stick with shorter distances.  I’d like to do a spring half and a fall half.  But if I only want to do one, it’ll be the spring half (Shamrock!).  It was my first half, I love it, and I’ve already signed up for it 🙂 There are so many good short distance races in the fall, and I’d like to be able to do more of them.

This is what a dream schedule (not necessarily actual) would look like for me:

March: Shamrock Dolphin Challenge (8k and Half) *signed up already

May: Chickfila 5k or 10k

Maybe something in June/July/August?

September: Rock N Roll 5k

Early October: Crawlin Crab 5k

Late October: Wicked 10k

Early November: CNU Alumni 5k

Late November: Harbor Lights 5k or Half

Early December: ChristmasTown 8k

Late December: Surfin Santa 5 miler

I think I’d like to stick with 10k or under.  I want to end up with more quality races than quantity. I think I can do 5k’s more frequently if I’m doing far fewer long distance races.  My fall would be pretty race heavy, but if I drop the half and just do the shorter distances, I think I’ll be ok.

Realistically, if I need to cut down, I’ll just do the J&A Races: Shamrock, Crawlin Crab, Wicked, Surfin Santa.

I want to enjoy the run.  I want to stay healthy.  I want to do the races I love and not have the training kill me.  If I’m honest, I want to get back to my faster times.  The only way I’m going to get there (speaking for me personally) is if I stick with shorter distances.

Also, I want to try to keep some more consistent weekly mileage, even if its relatively low mileage.  I’m really enjoying all the other activities I’m doing, so I want to keep room for them.

I’m starting to have a sense of peace about this plan.  Its given me direction and focus to push through the end of the year with the promise of a new start.

Thank you guys for being so awesome.

Are you already thinking about new year’s resolutions? What race distances do you love? How do you find balance when planning a race schedule?

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12 thoughts on “Is it too early for New Year’s Resolutions?

  1. It’s never too early to make resolutions. I believe in being proactive before everyone else. I love running but specific distances are not my priority. I just like to run. Whether I feel like doing one mile one day and 5 the next. I am a huge fan of tough mudders though to test my endurance and strength.

  2. Thanks for the mention chica!!! I think once you get a little more consistent with your mileage week in week out you’ll naturally find your strongest distance. Not that you won’t run other distances but we all have that one we shine at. I stand to PR more regularly in the 5K and run faster paces but I love the half marathon. Looks like you’ve put together a solid schedule Lauren 🙂

  3. I don’t really shine at any distance, lol. I drive the struggle bus for every mileage ;).

    I went through a period where I ran a lot of half marathons. It was fun, and I was enjoying running a lot of distance. But it quickly got old, feeling like I had to run 13.1 miles or keep going up in distance because that’s what others did. The next “step” after a half marathon was a marathon so I did that, and it probably wasn’t smart as I was very undertrained. Then, I decided I would rather do shorter distances and race more often and enjoy it than train for halfs or fulls. I still run a lot of longer distance runs, usually 10-12 mile long runs in training, but I don’t race that. I run 13.1 miles occasionally, just without a bib pinned to my shirt, and I know people who run a lot and NEVER race.

    Ultimately no one is paying us to run or making us run, it’s about enjoyment and if you don’t enjoy a particular race distance, don’t do it! It is just not worth being unhappy over.

    • I love that! The “struggle bus”! That’s funny 🙂
      I do love the challenge of a half, but I just don’t like the process of training. At least not a lot. I think I’ll stick with mostly shorter distances with a half marathon very occasionally. Thanks for all your kind words and support. You are very encouraging 🙂

  4. I think you are making good choices here. Not everyone has to run a half or full marathon…I often feel like there is so much pressure when you do sign up and for those involved. It’s crazy. I think you are doing this the smart way honestly.

  5. I think this is such a smart post. You need to do what is best for you and your body. I wish I could run marathons all the time, but the reality is that I can’t. I’m injury prone and I need to take care of myself. And really I do love shorter races too.

    • Thanks girl! I think sometimes with running we like to “keep up with the Joneses” and do what other runners can do, but that’s not true to who you are as an individual runner. Recognizing what your body can handle is so much greater success than completing more races.

  6. Pingback: 2015 Race Schedule | coolrunningsjourney

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