It took me a little longer than I expected to decompress from what went down at CIM and figure out why it happened but what I wanted to do about it. I was burnt out not only physically but also mentally and emotionally as well. For the very first time since I started running I didn't want to run. I didn't have any desire to get up before the break of dawn to pound the pavement or hit the trails and to be completely honest I didn't miss it.
In retrospect, I should have known this was going to happen. I ran 22 races in 2013 including 6 full marathons and 2 ultramarathons and paid for it by being completely physically exhausted by the end of the year. I vowed to give myself a break in 2014 by running fewer races.
I ran fewer races alright! 2014 was the year of the ultramarathon and I ended up running a total of 4 ultras including my very first 100 miler. To be fair, I had no idea how mentally and emotionally exhausting running ultras would be. I thought I'd bounce back just as quickly as I did after running marathons. I know, ridiculous right?! At the end of the day, I just didn't give myself the down time that I needed to reset and recharge. How I finished all 12 races I ran this year I have no idea!
I'm going to use a completely different approach for 2015. Race less, run less and more quality miles will be my mantra. I have some major goals that I set for myself for 2014 that I didn't come anywhere near reaching and I'm determined to hit those in the coming year.
For those who are interested, here is what I'll be focusing on for 2015:
1) Rediscover my running motivation and pure love of the run. This is my number one goal for the new year. I miss being excited to go out and run. I miss missing it. So my focus will be rediscovering that love and passion for the sport and finding the motivation to get out and run.
2) Redefine my lifestyle. This one will be hard. Ultimately I want to embrace a truly healthy lifestyle. I may run and workout fairly regularly however my eating patterns are horrendous. My goal is to embrace a clean, healthy diet supplemented by running and cross training.
3) Run fast. Run far. But run FAST. Full disclaimer: my fast is not anywhere near what the fast runners would call fast. I want to run fast for me. I want those numbers on my Garmin to stay closer to sub-9:00's versus the sub-10:00's that I'm seeing right now.
And those big race goals that I'll be chasing? Here they are:
Half Marathon PR - the ever elusive sub-2:00. It's gonna happen dang it!
Marathon PR - A Goal: 4:15:xx
B Goal: 4:25:xx
C Goal: sub-4:30
50 mile PR - Anything faster than 12 hours
There you go! Bring on the new year. I'm ready!
See you in 2015!