I don't think I've ever run a marathon where at the end of it I didn't declare, "That's it. I'm taking a break--no more marathons for me anytime soon!" Then I eat half a pizza, drink some (okay, a lot of) beer and am planning my next marathon before the sun sets.
Things are looking different this year. Something in Richmond broke my spirit. I'm tired. I've been running two marathons a year for the past 5 years. I need a change.
No marathons are one thing. No racing is something completely different. I need a goal. Without one, I won't run. Or won't run hard enough or long enough to keep my conditioning. I've worked hard to build speed and endurance and I'm not willing to let all that just go out the window.
So I've spent the last couple of weeks stalking race web sites. Particularly a lot of ultra and trail race web sites. Here are a few I'm considering:
- Salem Lake Frosty 50K - Winston-Salem, Jan. 5th
- Lakeside Trail Race - 8 or 15 mile trail run, Greensboro. Jan 12th
- Fellowship of the Idiots - 19.7 miles to the top of Morrow Mountain and back. Albemarle, NC. Jan. 26th
- North Carolina Half Marathon - Greensboro, April 6th
- Diva Half Marathon - This one's a sure thing with the Sole Sisters! Myrtle Beach, April 28th
- 5K On the Runway - Greensboro International Airport, June
- Hinson Lake 24-hour Ultra - September
- Triple Lakes Trail Race - 26.2 or 40-mile run. Greensboro, Oct. 5th
- Crooked Road 24-hour Ultra - November
The January races all appeal to me but there is the small problem of I haven't run over 10 miles in a long run since Richmond. I need to start getting in some 15 and 20 mile runs in the next few weeks and I'm not sure I'm ready for them.
I've got a couple of shorter distance races coming up--Run at the Rock this weekend with my friend Christie and a holiday 5K. I may end up skipping the longer January races and maybe do some serious training for the NC half. Or I may just wing it and show up at the start line for everything and see what happens.
Or I may just drink some beer and see how it goes.