Wow, it’s here, the new year. Just like that, I lift my head again and look forward to new opportunities. What does the new year hold for me? Better yet, what will I grasp from the new year? Will there be goals for me? Will I lift the bar higher for myself?
I’ve been a big believer in committing to specific events as way to draw a hard line for myself -- to set daily, weekly even monthly training goals. With Western States 100 on the calendar now, I’m in the process of formulating my plan, and I expect there will be a few changes in store for my training and racing compared to the last couple of years.
I’ll lay some of those out here in this blog over the next few weeks. In the mean time, I'm learning that being motivated to run 365 days of the year is not realistic, nor necessary. Running takes a lot of work, especially in the winter, at night, alone, in a hurry, when I’m beat down, from work or other things in life. To plan, train and then run through the season, including 50 and 100 mile events, I've learned I have to pick my battles, and carefully focus my energies toward specific events and periods. I believe now, more than ever, that the more focused and tactical I am about directing my energies, the better I do as a runner. Running 80 to 90 weeks is doable, but should be done for the right reasons, at the right time, with the event in mind. Hill training, speed work, long runs, weight training, heat training, stretching, diet, good sleep and rest are all factors that will play a part on my path in 2010.
Capturing all these factors in my plan will be a balancing act, but it is my desire. Whether I succeed on this path I cannot guarantee. What I can guarantee, though, is that my success will come down really to one thing, the same thing that binds all us to our goals and ambitions: Motivation.