With a little bit of down time after Disney, it’s time to start thinking about racing plans for the coming year. Here’s what is swirling around in my head, in no particular order:
- For the spring and early summer, focus on getting some speed back. I haven’t run anything faster than 7 min/mi for the past several weeks, with the exception of the one day a little before Christmas Rick and I ran down Walnut St in Plainville, which is a nice long hill, at a breakneck 6:50 pace. (I’m sure Rick was going a good 20 seconds faster than me).
- We’re hoping Dooley’s in Wrentham puts on their 10K in March. The Wrentham State School course is my favorite, and it’s a good litmus test for the upcoming spring season. If not, there are a slew of local 5Ks in April.
- The JP Morgan Chase Corporate Challenge. No date yet, but it’s usually in June some time. Very crowded (12K+ people), yet very fun if you can bear traversing the throngs of people on the sidewalks of Comm Ave. I ran 23-something for 3.5 miles a couple years ago. Don’t know if my aging body has much room for improvement on that one, but I will try.
- I’d love to do a road mile. There is the High Street Mile Newburyport in early August, and the Manchester Mile in July. I’m leaning towards the Manchester race because it’s downhill and would love to be under 6 before I get too old and decrepit to even entertain the thought. I don’t care if it’s kind of not really an “official” time – I just want to see 5:5-something (or better) on my watch! There are lots of track events during the summer, but I think racing a mile on the track would bring back all kinds of unpleasant memories from high school and I can guarantee there would be barfing all over the track when it’s done. Not that vomiting should be any sort of barrier to competing, mind you!
- Break 35 minutes for 5 miles. I’ve done it in the middle of multiple races (half marathon, 10 miler, 10K), but just don’t have an official sub-35 minute result “on the books”. Still looking around for a race.
- Remember the negative splitting takeaway? A good place to do that might be the Bay State Marathon in Lowell in October. It’s a double loop and relatively flat. It is a favorite local Boston Qualifier course, not that I want to run Boston again. Once was enough! J
- We are on the hook for Reach the Beach in September with our Sole Survivor teammates as an Ultra team, which translates to 30-35 miles a piece over the hills (read: mountains) of between Cannon Mountain and Hampton Beach in New Hampshire. Always a great time with our crazy team, although anticipating some pain.
Other longer range and/or tangential goals include a 50K (Rick is not on board with this one), maybe the Dopey Challenge at Disney next year, being more careful with nutrition and doing regular strength training. All of subject to change, as the Lord wills. In the meantime, we are in maintenance mode, which means don’t lose too much fitness and don’t get too squishy!