Now that I’m taking a little time off from running and not training for anything in particular for the next month, I’ve been thinking about what my short term goals are. Where do I see myself running in 2016? When I don't have a goal I seem to flounder. Running gives me goals. Whether it's to complete a certain distance, set a personal record or conquer a particularly difficult course..... I have something tangible to work towards.
For months and months my goal was simple: train, train, and train harder. I was laser focused on the prize of my first marathon and it was hard to really look anywhere else.
For the past month I have had one goal: RECOVER. My first and most important goal was to let my body do whatever it needed to get back to where it needed to be. I have just started to slowly incorporate strength training back into my life this week, but still no running.
Sometimes, when we sit down to visualize our goals, we get stopped by fear. Fear of failure. Fear of Injury. Fear is a very real and raw human emotion and it's what I'm feeling at the moment. Sometimes we need to take risks and relish in that feeling of pushing ourselves past what we thought our limits were in pursuit of a new goal.
Step#1. Set a specific goal - ✓
I want to set a challenge for myself- PR my Half marathon! Ultimately, I would love to run a sub-2 half (my current is 2:07:55) I‘ve finally decided on a spring half-marathon... I think.... I’m between two races, but they are only one week apart so the time frame is relatively the same. Both offer courses that would slightly challenge me. All of this could change if I get into the NYC half though. If I get that, that will be my spring focus!! As much as I would have liked this to be a full marathon, this injury really is not the time to push my body that far if I want to continue with this love affair with running.
Step #2. Set an action plan to achieve the goal- ✓
I'm currently researching training plans. I've used the same plan for 2 years, and its obviously worked for me in some aspects but I have grown so much as a runner in those two years and I still have more room to grow so why not use a different plan that might challenge me this time around. I have always focused on distance where as now I'd like to focus on speed. If you have any plan suggestions please let me know I'd love to check them out and possibly add them into my considerations.
Step #3. Set a timeline to evaluate and adjust the goal- ✓
I have roughly 30 days before I would officially start any training plan so that gives me time get back into a routine and build a base again. Like I mentioned, I'd like to shoot for a sub-2, but I'm not going to push myself too hard and risk injury again. It will come when my body is ready. As always, how I'm feeling during training can affect my end goal.
I’m proud of myself each and every time I cross a finish line. I’m not saying I’m not going to try and get faster and stronger but I’m not going to beat myself up either if a year from now I’m still running a 2:07 half-marathon because you know what, I’m running a half-marathon and I'm loving every second of it and that’s all that really matters!
Dream Big. Work Hard. :)