Sick, no run.
Looking back on the year
It's been a great year. I smashed my annual mileage PR (3079, though that doesn't count ~200 miles from Jan/Feb that I didn't log). I raced a decent more frequently. I've gotten in good enough shape that I should run a huge PR in the half at Houston. And this has all happened through work, sickness, parenthood, and the birth of my second child. Historically I've struggled with consistency whether due to injury or motivation or life events, and that's a big goal of mine moving forward through 2017 and next few years. To build a few years of work in sequence and see what happens.
There's been room for improvement. I'm running slower than I think I should be. In May, I was looking ahead at the winter season with 1:08 in mind for the half. At this point, despite the annual mileage high, I think 1:09:00-1:09:30 is a more reasonable goal. I think there are 2 things that will help me improve through 2018: 1) Continued consistency, and 2) Weight lifting. The few seasons when I was running my best, I was lifting. that needs to come back if I can fit it in.
I have a few nagging injuries that I'm largely running through. Achilles tendonitis on the left side has been ongoing for 4 years now. Nothing has fixed it. I'm also concerned I have either a sports hernia or hip labrum tear that appeared around the same time as the tendonitis and could be the instigator for it. For now, I'm planning to keep running the way things are. Could be part of the reason my performance has declined, but the pain has been manageable and I'd prefer to continue treating them the way I have been for now.
Looking ahead to 2018
2018 is my marathon year, and I'm excited for it. I've wanted to move on to the marathon for awhile. From 2009-2010 I struggled with injury. 2011-2013 I got side-tracked by going back to school and competing collegiately (very positive experience, wouldn't change that decision). 2014 I got talked into focusing on the mile/5k and 2015 the 5k/HM (wouldn't change that decision either), though I lost all my fitness in 2015 after my daughter was born (might do that differently, though I think it was important in adjusting to parenthood and establishing a happy home). I used 2017 as a buildup to get some miles under my belt, and 2018 so far is shaping up to be the year.
I'm eyeing a late-April marathon, and after Houston I'll take a short break and start my buildup for that. I'd love to go 2:25 or faster, but we'll see how training goes. 2:25 will be my "A" goal, sub-2:30 my "B." I'd also love to do 2 more marathons in 2018, but I think the Louisiana summer may limit me to 1. It's too far out at this point, but I'd be thinking about Philly, Indianapolis, CIM, or maybe push it to Houston 2019. We'll see.
Anyway, for training I think after Houston it's time to approach 100 mpw and see what happens. Maybe more will be possible after the spring. Entering the unknown....