I set the schedule for next year to get the most races under my belt as possible. For my 2013 is going to be a building year. Every race I want to approach and a test. My goal is create a training program for ultra marathons that allows for any athlete to peak several times during the year with a forced off season. Many of us, especially me, don't know how not to be athletes. We miss family events, cut dates short and bail on social gatherings because we want that extra workout. In my case this sort of thinking has caused an imbalance.
I always seem to arrive at a place during the year when my motivation wanes and I simply cannot force myself to get outside no matter how nice the day is. Last year I had a "forced off season" because of a stress fracture. It gave me a reason not to go out for a long run or workout. It was a blessing. I was able to focus on family and bonding with my community. I started walking around my neighborhood meeting local businessmen and seeing things I missed on my runs. I believe an off season does not mean inactivity, but it definitely means a re-focus. I am hoping to nail it down so I can help others find that balance as well.