Sunday, January 1, 2012

2011 in Review

Last year I wrote about my 2010 year of running. If you'd like to read that post, click here. Surprisingly, I didn't talk about the mileage that I ran in 2010. Well, in 2010, I ran 2443.19 miles, an average of 47 miles a week. This year I ran a lot more. 3349.72 miles, an average of 64 a week. Quite a difference. I'm curious if I've ever run over 3000 miles in a year. I'd have to look. So it's not surprising that 2011 was a lot better than 2010 in terms of quality races.

I raced less than last year; 16 races in 2011 compared to 20 in 2010. That's a race every 22.25 days. I raced 107.13 miles in 10 hours, 7 minutes and 54 seconds. I think one of the big differences is that I didn't run any marathons in 2011 and I skipped two FARC races. So that is 3 races right there. Also in 2010 I ran the Monument 10K. I didn't do that this year. Looking back now though, I think I forgot to count the Sweethearts 4 Miler. Probably because it didn't fit nicely into my list. So I'll forget that one this year too (maybe?) So theoretically that's the 4 races. Races are as follows, with quantity in parenthesis and times listed chronologically.

One Mile (1) 4:42
5K (4) 16:00, 16:22, 16:56, 15:32
8K (3) 27:41, 27:21, 25:33
10K (1) 34:24
15K (1) 52:42
Ten Miles (1) 58:00
Half-Marathon (4) 76:15, 78:47, 70:51, 72:02

The mile was faster than last year. Last year we were afraid of the course. This year I went out too fast, slowed down, and then did my best to run away from everyone over the 2nd half. I destroyed them.

5K was a big emphasis this year. I started the year with the Battleground Relays as my primary goal. All of my workouts in the winter were for that race. 16:00 was disappointing, but Greg said that it was the "easiest 16:00 I've ever run." He's probably right. I went too slow at the beginning expecting a race and dug myself into a hole. SPCA was my first hard run of the summer leading up to my Philly build up. Mental Health was my 2nd 5K of the day in a 2x5K workout. Then the Turkey Trot was a big day. I hadn't PRed in the 5K in a long time and it was good to get that out, especially during marathon training. I'm much happier with 2011 than 2010 for 5K.

I ran the John Robbins 8k a week before my track 5K and didn't try. I sat for 2 miles and then took off. Whatever. The important thing was that I didn't go to jail the night before. The 4th of July wasn't a very good day for me. I ran too fast for 2.5 miles and then paid the price. I wasn't going to contend after that and just shut it down. I went to Richmond in November just to see what I could do and came away very happy. I thought it was a PR for a day or so, and it ended up not being, but it showed that I was ready to run fast and was doing things right. It was a good confidence builder for Thanksgiving.

The 10K was worthless. I ran off course at the failure of a race that was the Spotsylvania YMCA 10K. It was my first hard effort after Philadelphia and I took a day off a few days before that because I thought my ankle was broken. So the highlight of that race was that my ankle wasn't broken. 15K was sort of the same; uneventful. It was a week after my wedding and I wasn't training hard. I sat on the same guy from John Robbins and then just ran away from him. I ran much slower than the year before, but who cares? It was a 15K the weekend between my wedding and my honeymoon. Not a priority.

The Capital Ale House 10-Miler was a bit of a concern. I was happy to skip this race in 2010 for George Ingham's wedding, but this year I was hoping to finish the race with style. The race came at the end of a 90+ mile week and my body was hurting. I wanted to drop out and I practically walked the last 50 meters to the finish. I was very worried about what was to come in Philadelphia. Apparently it was my my body breaking down a little bit. The next week I ran even more miles, went to see Abel Shaw, and had no problems.

Half-Marathon! The good stuff! Looking back I was surprised to see how badly I'd run at Colonial. I just went to see why, my blog post said that it was a terrible day... My next half was the Historic Half at home where I started in last and raised over $12,000 for the food bank. I didn't really train for this one, and ran a lot faster than I thought I would. The Marine Corps was unprepared and I wasn't given an accurate chip time. That frustrates me to no end since I gave them a lot of notice about what I was doing. According to Vic, I should get an age group prize because they do their age group awards by chip time, not gun time. That is contrary to almost every other race ever. But then there was Philadelphia. Finally. Half a decade spent toiling away at half-marathons to accomplish nothing-- all washed away. It was my best race of the year, a culmination of a lot of hard work. Thank goodness. Then in December I ran my 2nd fastest half ever, the day after a long run on a tougher course than Philly and blah blah blah. I hope I wasn't peaking 5 weeks early.

Looking at my conclusions last year, things were almost spot on. I didn't get to do any triathlons thanks to Hurricane Irene and just the Spotsy YMCA changing their schedule. I didn't run Marine Corps because I was in charge of the Wild Mile again. But now I'm 14 days away from my first marathon since October 3, 2010. Let's pretend that the last 456 days have all been building up to that...

This post was disappointing to me. I ran a workout today with 4 tempo miles at 5:36, 5:37, 5:37, 5:33. It was a 75 mile week. Next week I guess I'll be closer to 60 and then the week after that, mileage won't matter. Onwards and upwards.

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