Saturday, January 2, 2010

Dashing into 2010

It's the New Year and I had a race on January 1st, so it looks that I have three jobs to do in today's post: assess last year, set goals for this year, and recap the race. I thought blogs were supposed to be fun and that sounds like a lot of work. Let me see if I can get through the boring stuff and so I can talk about the race, which of course is the fun stuff.

Eight weeks ago, I set four goals to get me through the last eight weeks of the year. My conclusion? The last eight weeks of the year isn't the best time to be setting goals. We had our trip to IM Florida, travel for Thanksgiving, a trip to Vegas, Christmas, New Years... does that sound like a list of excuses? I knew you were smart. Here is what happened combined with the goals for 2010.

Strength Training The goal was to continue hitting the gym twice a week with the benchmark of doing three sets of 15 push ups. While I didn't make it to the gym twice each week, for some reason I can now do three sets of 15 push ups. Maybe I was fatigued before and that's why I had trouble cranking out the push ups. Whatever the reason, I somehow made my goal without doing the work. For 2010, I'll keep up with my twice a week lifting schedule and see if I can legitimately make some gains in strength that will help with with my racing and maybe keep me healthy.

Flexibility The goal was to make it to yoga six out of the eight weeks. How many times did I make it? One. My only accomplishment in this area was that I bought a yoga DVD. I haven't even taken the shrink wrap off of it, but it is in my house. I've decided that with running 4 days a week and lifting 2 days, making it to the gym for yoga one day a week is not going to happen. For 2010, my goal is to do a better job of stretching at home and to fit yoga in when I can.

Nutrition I was supposed to lose 5 pounds. What did I lose? One pound. Does that even count? I mean, I feel a little dehydrated, so I'll probably have a glass of water and be back to where I started. This is back on the list of things to accomplish for 2010. I hope to get the pounds lost before I have to wear spandex in front of a crowd again.

Running Finally, something that I said that I would do and I actually did. The goal was 160 miles and I hit 165. Yeah! Goal for 2010: run a fall marathon with no pain. Sounds like a simple goal, but there is so much that goes into making that happen. I have at least 10 months to drone on about every facet of this goal, so for now I will just leave it at that. Hopefully it will be the New York City Marathon, but if I don't get in I will find another one.

Whew! I didn't like all of that. Accountability... yuck!

Polar Dash Race Review

New Year's Day, the temperature was zero. Hey, let's go run a 10K race. That sounds fun! Well, it didn't sound fun, but Mike and I headed downtown with our friends Josh and Jennifer. We got there early enough to park close to the start line and then sat in the car waiting for it to get close to race time. For the hour that we sat there, I mostly irritated the group by fretting over my clothing selections. I had brought layers of various thicknesses, and arriving at the ultimate combination of layers is a science. I don't want to be cold waiting for the start, but I don't want to get hot during the race. What to wear in the cold is a big deal for me. Sorry, it's just the way I am.

With 10 minutes until start time, we jumped out of the car and snapped a couple pictures. I didn't post the one with Jennifer in it because all you can see is her eyeballs. Here we are with Josh before jogging to the start line.

Josh was running the 5K which wasn't chip timed and Mike planned to run fast, so they waded to the front. Jennifer and I found two other running friends, Lisa and Cindy, and we lined up at the 10:00 pace line. Within minutes we were off. There was no wind and the group kept us warm for the short time we were standing around.

The four of us girls ran and chatted and had a great time. All of us were just out there to have fun and to start the New Year off on the right foot. The streets were clear and the course was very nice with a few rolling hills. We stopped mid-race to snap a picture. The guy we gave the camera to was having a hard time figuring it out, and he was kind of joking around and being silly. I finally said, "Let's go, it is a race you know!" Not very nice of me, but I was getting cold and the clock was ticking. Here we are:

It's a cute picture and I should be more patient. Sorry I snapped at you, picture man.

I finished the race in 1:01:43 which is a 9:56 mile. That's not bad for taking it easy and stopping for a photo op. Here I am with Cindy heading for the finish:

Here are the girls showing off the very nifty medals. These medals are super cool and were worth braving the cold.

Both Mike and Josh PR'ed and I was very happy with my run, so it was a great day. The most important thing: my clothing choice was impeccable! I wasn't cold at the start and I was comfortable for the entire race. Of course, I noted what I was wearing and the conditions so that I can use this information for future clothing decisions.

The Polar Dash is part of a 4 race series that I am doing this year. I hope that this race is a good indicator of what is to come because it was a lot of fun and was well coordinated. Having friends to run with is hard to beat, too. I didn't get to see Julie or Amy out there. The sun was really bright and it was hard to spot the 5K'ers when they passed us on their way back. Hope to see both of them at a future race!

Welcome, 2010! So far it's off to a good start.


Julie said...

Hi Beth,
Great job on your 10k...your time was fab for talking with friends and stopping for pictures:) I wish I could of found would of been cool to get a few pictures:) It was cold out there yesterday but it was wind. I will e-mail you when I have a little more time. Have a great day!

Love to Run said...

Hey Beth,

Nice job on your Frozen 10K. I ran a race once at 0 degrees out and it defnitely is a challenge.

Good Luck to you and all your running friends in 2010. Good Luck in the NYC Marathon Lottery. I lost the one time I enetered.

Here is to a great 2010!

ultrarunner (Brian Philpot) said...

Happy New Year! Good luck in 2010!

Velma said...

Happy New Year. Nice work on setting goals and working toward them. I am keeping my fingers crossed for NYC. I am off to run a race tomorrow in 0 temps, so I will be complaining and layering up the clothing.

Helen said...

ha ha - yes, unfortunately accountability comes with having a blog!! actually I think this year I need to be more open and honest with my goals - I have a habit of not revealing them until the race report :)

Hope you get into New York. I got in in 2005 but then got injured - but I had paid for the plane ticket so I went and spectated - which was a lot of fun. I think I entered with my Irish address... better chance of gaining entry as an "International" - so if you need a foreign address let me know!!

Trishie said...

badass medals ! and woooot for racing in those temps! brrrrr

Porkchopwi said...

Did you ever expect to have to take notes on what is just the right thing to wear when you run on a day when it's zero? ZERO! ZERO!

Nice job on Friday and on getting that Yoga DVD into the house. I'll tell you "great job" when the plastic comes off... so please keep us up to date!

chris mcpeake said...

great job.
Happy new year.
And yes the track does pay off but its hard to stay with it consistantly

Jean said...

Nice job in the race, Beth. That looks like a cool event (pardon the obvious pun!). And those medals look awesome!

All the best to you in 2010 as you work towards your goals. I wish you great success!

AZ said...

Nice job on the race and good luck for your 2010 goals. Just one comment, I didn't know they made marathons without pain.

Heather said...

Love the snowflake on the medals - so cool. Great job getting out for the race. I tend to wear too much on top during the winter - I just automatically put on all my layers.

BrianFlash said...

We're experiencing a hint of your temperatures (highs in the teens all weekend) and it is enough to keep me inside. So great work on the cold run!

MaggieMN said...

When the weather is bitterly cold and a race sponsor shortens it because of the weather (half marathon to quarter marathon, for example) does that cause a problem for you in terms of your training regimen? Sometimes we have to do that to protect our volunteers at the Securian Frozen 5K and Half Marathon who can't warm themselves by running. Some runners get really irate when we have to do that. What are your thoughts?

Beth said...

Hey MaggieMN, Thanks for the comment. I think most runners understand the sacrifice that volunteers make and certainly don't want to put them in any danger. On the other hand, if you schedule a race in mid January, you have to plan for cold weather. If the conditions are outside the norm for that time of year, then sure changes should be made. But if a race can't be conducted in normal conditions safely, then it's not fair to take money from participants and then cancel. I think most people understood that last year was too cold for the Frozen Half and that it was unusually bitter conditions. I'm looking forward to running that race this year hopefully the weather will cooperate.

I Run for Fun said...

Yay! Awesome job at the race. Great pics too!

Hey, that's what happens to holiday goals...they go out the window! You're doing great...and you look great...and that's what's important. Happy 2010!!!