Farewell 2016

When it comes to running, 2016 wasn't completely terrible -- the first three months went well, I had a decent Shamrock Half Marathon and December has been satisfying.

Everything else in between, though, was awful. Suffering my first injury in years and being completely sidelined for three weeks was THE WORST. 

There's no reason for me to do a year in review this year -- I haven't been a big fan of them anyway. 

I'm eager for 2017 to get here to continue what I've started in the past month and enjoyed in the past: being consistent; writing down my miles; and being happy while running.

If those three things happen, bigger and better things will happen in 2017 and a year from now I'll be writing a completely different story.

Crossing off a big goal

It's been a mostly uneventful few weeks with my 26 goals to finishing another marathon, so I was due to finally cross off the next one that's really important to me -- running for an hour nonstop. 

As training for the Blue Ridge Marathon kicked off this week, my first long run called for 6 miles -- the perfect opportunity to just go ahead and run for an hour to stretch the distance a tiny bit farther. 

As I hit an hour and then another minute, I really wanted to keep going. It's the first time I've felt like that in a while, so I really can't wait to run MUCH more in the next four months.

Also late last month, I crossed off an important nutrition-related goal of not eating any potato chips for a month. That streak has continued into December.  

I'm really pleased with where things are right now with everything. Running, eating a little better and no pains. LET'S DO THIS! 

  1. DONE - OCT. 23: Run 3 miles non stop
  2. DONE - NOV. 3: Run 3 miles at a pace under 10 minutes a mile
  3. DONE - OCT. 30Run 4 miles nonstop
  4. DONE - DEC. 10: Run for an hour nonstop
  5. Run a 5k race under an 8-minute mile pace
  6. Run a 10k at under an 8-minute mile pace
  7. Run a half marathon
  8. Run hill repeats
  9. DONE - OCT 8Run in the rain again
  10. Run on a trail that's new to me (or one I haven't run in a year+)
  11. Sign up/run in a race that's new to me
  12. Do a track workout
  13. DONE - NOV. 3: Do a progressive run
  14. Run 100 miles in a month (this has changed from my original goal of riding my bike 100+ miles; the running goal is something more important to me right now)
  15. DONE in late October/November: Go a month without potato chips 
  16. Eat a salad every day at work for 2 straight weeks
  17. Lose 5 pounds
  18. Lose 10 pounds
  19. Lose 15 pounds
  20. Lift weights twice a week for 4 straight weeks
  21. Hold a plank for 2 minutes straight
  22. Hold a plank for 3 minutes
  23. Do 25 consecutive push-ups
  24. Do 50 consecutive push-ups
  25. Blog about my progress at least once a week for 4 straight weeks
  26. Run a marathon

Disclaimer: I am receiving a free race entry to the Blue Ridge Marathon as an "official blogger" for the race. Visitblueridgemarathon.com for more information about the race in Roanoke, Virginia, and use code BRMFRIENDS to get 15% off. 

Make a Pledge to Myself: Catching up

At the end of October, I made a pledge to myself to do an inventory of my running gear and get a few things cleaned up. 

It wasn't easy, but I got everything much more organized before Election Day. This included throwing out a few shirts, a couple of pairs of shoes and prioritizing what shoes I'll run in the most and which ones will only be used occasionally. 

Another one of the pledges that deserves a follow up right now is making a training "plan" for the Blue Ridge Marathon. 

While I have some time on my side -- I don't hit 20 weeks to go until December -- I have set up a spreadsheet laying out long runs until race day and what the first few weeks of training should look like. 

I've taken a different approach to labeling my runs as "run 1," "run 2," etc., instead of focusing on specific days of the week. There was something about those specific days that was starting to bug me when I started plotting things out. 

As for my other pledges -- tracking my miles, eating an apple a day and no potato chips -- everything is going perfectly!

Disclaimer: I am receiving a free race entry to the Blue Ridge Marathon as an "official blogger" for the race. Visitblueridgemarathon.com for more information about the race in Roanoke, Virginia, and use code BRMFRIENDS to get 15% off.