Sunday, December 23, 2012

Running Year Review: 2012

2012 got off to a slow start. The planter fascia in my right foot was acting up, which sidelined me for most of January. Because of this, I was forced to DNS two races I had planned to run in February.  By the end of January, I was running again and as February wrapped up, I was starting to feel like my old self.

Even with my sore planter fascia, I was able to run the inaugural Twitter Road Race that I ended up hosting 4 times throughout the year (one during each season). The race has been a great success and I have all the awesome runners that have participated to thank! Be on the lookout for the date of the next TRR soon! It will be sometime in February.

March was upon me before I knew it and the RnR DC Marathon was knocking on my door. It turned out to be a great race for me and I was able to set a new PR! Race Recap

The next race on my agenda was the popular Cherry Blossom 10 miler in DC. It was a fun race and I snagged up another PR.  However, the highlight of this race was enjoying an awesome brunch with my girlfriend, Katie (who also ran in the race), and our running friends afterwards. Fyi...mimosas make for great post race recovery fuel.

Then, it was on to the Blue Ridge Marathon in late April. This was an was an extremely difficult race set in the hills/mountains of Roanoke, VA. The course boasted over 7,000 feet of elevation change! I dragged my ass to the finish line and thanked the running gods for sparing my life. Race Recap

After a successful winter TRR, I hosted the spring TRR on the last weekend of April. I ran the race with Katie while we were out in Charlottesville, VA visiting one of her friends. After the race, we spent the whole afternoon visiting the plethora of wineries in the area.

The following weekend Katie accompanied me on my trip to New Jersey for the New Jersey Marathon. I decided to run this race naked (no Garmin) and it was a lot fun. Katie even joined me for a few miles during race which was definitely the highlight for me. Race Recap

No rest for the weary and the weekend after the NJ Marathon, Katie and I ran in a 10K at an airport in Manassas, VA. I'm a big plane nerd so of course, this race was awesome! Part of the course went right down the runway! Race Recap

Next, it was off to the beautiful Potomac Heritage Trail in Northern VA for The North Face 50K in early June. It rained buckets the night before the race which made the course extra muddy and even more challenging. But, I loved it! Race Recap

Over Father's Day weekend, Katie and I ran in a twilight 10K in DC. It was a little different running a race at the end of the day after being so accustomed to racing in the morning.

For my dumbest (idea) race of the year was the Grant-Pierce Indoor Marathon in Arlington, VA. That's right, I decided it would be "fun" to run around an indoor 200 meter track, 211 times. To say the least, the race was interesting and I was very happy to finish this circle of death race. Race Recap

In early August I hosted the summer TRR. I ran my 5K during part of my Saturday long run with my running club. It was hot, sticky, and humid. Not much else to say.

In late September I ran in a 12 hour endurance trail run. My goal was to run 50 miles, but my body had other plans. About 6 and half hours later, I called it day, running more or less a 50K. The Chicago Marathon (my key fall race) was right around the corner and there was no need to push my body further that day. I still enjoyed the race and the trail was very scenic and peaceful. Race Recap

The Chicago Marathon is my favorite marathon. The last time I ran it was in 2009. So, I was very excited to toe the start line on race morning. I ran the race of my life and accomplished my goal of setting a new PR, 3:45:27! The weather was perfect that day and I had hunch before the race that the course record might be broken, and it was. 2:04:38! Race Recap

At the end of October, I ran in DC's flagship race, the Marine Corps Marathon. Two days before the race, I arrived back in states after being in Thailand. I had gone to Thailand to visit Katie. She is currently teaching 5th grade at an international school in Bangkok and is loving it! Teaching abroad has been a big goal for her and I'm so happy to see her achieving it. 
I had signed up for Marine Corps before I made my plans to visit Katie. Knowing that Marine Corps was just gonna be a fun race for me, I wasn't too worried about running so soon after returning from a long trip and an 11 hour time difference. Long story short, by mile 5 I was tight and it only got worst from there. I seriously considered dropping out of the race at one point because I felt so terrible. But, I'm stubborn and didn't want to DNF, so I crawled to the finish line. 5 hours later I was done and learned a valuable lesson.

The first weekend in November, I held the last Twitter Road Race of year. For this race, I created a poll on my blog and had everyone vote for what they wanted the race distance to be: a 5K, 10K, 15K or a half marathon. The 10K won in a landslide. Thanks to all that participated in this race!

To cap off my year, I ran in a local 5K. It had been awhile since I ran in a 5K and I really enjoyed it. I had a very strong race was able to finish 3rd in my age group! Race Recap

2012 was another great year for me. I able to lower my marathon PR by about 5 minutes, which made me very happy. I feel my best years are still ahead of me! I started training in November for my ultimate race goal in 2013, a 100 mile trail ultra in late March. Training is going well and I can't wait for the race to get here! It will be an amazing experience, I'm sure!

I wish all you a wonderful and safe holiday season and a Happy New Year. Enjoy your time with your loved ones and friends. I hope your 2012 was great one, filled with lots of PRs! Cheers to you for having an even better year in 2013!

Happy running!

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