Friday, January 1, 2021

2020 Year in Running

2020 Total Mileage: 1801

Year Summary:

All things considered, this wasn't too bad of a year for running.  I actually made some gains this year.  The last few years has seen my times actually go down.  This year, thanks to some focus and a semi-forced diet, I was able to dial in my calories, drop some of my bad habits and train harder.  

I didn't really do the last part until the fall.  The summer was absolutely brutal.  Aside from Covid-19, it was just HOT and there was a lot of political / social drama.  I had a hard time getting going and I usually just gutted through a few miles and called it a day.

Once the cooler temperatures arrived, I was able to run longer AND harder.  My times have definitely come down.

In some part, I have to give credit to Rock 'n Roll Virtual Club for giving me some workouts, challenges and virtual events to try my hand at.  Knowing I had a race or a workout that I had committed to, made a huge difference.  It was all free too.

I basically started the year running around 2 hour half marathons and 25:55 for a 5K.  At the end of the year:  1:53:55 for a half (on a flat course) and 24:45 for a 5K.

Racing Summary

Race Distance (Virtual races in parenthesis involving a 100% effort):

5K: 10 (3)
10K: 8 (1)
15K: 1 (0)
13.1 Miles: 3 (2)
26.2: 0

Utah was fairly open as far as racing went.  We had a regular season from the start of the year until mid March.  Then everything was shut down to at least the start of summer.  So I definitely missed out on a lot of races.  

The summer heat also prevented me from training at the half marathon distance so I didn't feel particularly comfortable racing at that distance.

Fortunately, I didn't have many "bad" races this year.  The most memorable 'bad" races are usually the longer ones (i.e. half marathon or marathon level runs).  Being I only had one, and I ran it pretty well, I can't recall too many "gosh I want to quit running" races this year.  

My virtual races were probably my best in terms of performance, which is surprising because I usually need people to work off of.  But the live in-person races I felt the best about were the Trick or Trot 5K and the Legacy Marathon 10K.

So far the race forecast for 2021 -- at least for the spring -- looks fairly bleak.  There are some races but definitely not as many.  And as I sit here in January, I am really wanting a in-person, live race.  It's been since late October since I had one and I'd love to have an honest to goodness course.

Goals for 2021

Right now I am really excited about my potential for 2021.  I am making gains, my weight is back down to a very manageable level and I've been watching training videos on YouTube.

So my goals for 2021 really are fairly simple:

1) Work on my speed.  Let's get my 5K down to something in the 23's.  That will mean continuing to stay lean, getting in a variety of speed workouts and staying injury free.

2)  Evaluate my desire to do a marathon.  After watching the finale of The Marathon Project, I found myself really inspired to try my hand at one again (I've done over 27 of them).  I definitely do NOT want to do a virtual one but a real, boutique-level marathon.  I suspect I am going to have to wait until the fall as I am already race-committed for the spring.  We'll make a judgement call on this sometime in the early summer.

In Conclusion

2020 was NOT a fun year.  There were lots of changes and it all seemed to happen in mid-March.  I went from one way of thinking and I figured 2020 would play out a certain way to completely having the rug pulled out from under me.  

There really weren't any epic destination races, no massive marathons or halves.  I found myself fairly isolated, working from home today and my social interactions reduced to a minimum.

But I made lemonade out of lemons.  

I quit eating junk.  I ran more often.  I picked up a dumbbell.  I started to relearn / listen again to training tips and incorporate them.  

And so I am grateful for the opportunity to improve upon myself.  I just hope I can continue the efforts in 2021.

Upcoming Races

Not much upcoming for races.  The race directors, however, are starting to send out specials.  I'll see how many I decide to take advantage of and what the plan is for 2021.

02/06: 2021 Run SLC Race Series 5K - Salt Lake City, UT (Confirmed)
02/13: 2021 South Davis Recreation Center Sweethearts 5K - Bountiful, UT (Confirmed)
03/06: 2021 March Madness Half Marathon - Woods Cross, UT (Confirmed)
03/20: 2021 Lucky 13 10K - West Jordan, UT (Confirmed)
04/03: 2021 Eggs Legs Race 10K - West Jordan, UT (Confirmed)
04/XX: 2021 Salt Lake City Half Marathon - Salt Lake City, UT (Confirmed) - Virtual
05/08: 2021 May the Fourth 10K - Farmington, UT (Confirmed)
05/15: 2021 Ogden Half Marathon - Ogden, UT (Confirmed) -- Virtual
11/??: 2021 Las Vegas Half Marathon - Las Vegas (Confirmed)
12/04: 2021 Laughlin Half Marathon - Laughlin, NV (Confirmed)

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