4-0-300 Blog 058
2017 was a year of great success and frustration for me. Looking back on my goals for the year I was able to hit most of them although it didn’t actually feel as positive at the time.
My goals for last year were:
Amount of Races
Ideal: 6 races
I achieved this and then some last year, I think I hit 8 or maybe 9. This was a double-edged sword in terms of positive and negative outcomes for my year. I thoroughly enjoyed the number of races I did and felt like a great achievement but I burnt out on running in the middle of the prime racing season. This is going to change the number of races I plan on signing up for in 2018.
Focused solely on sprints this year.
Ideal: 45 minutes’ finish time
Realistic: 50-55 minutes.
Not counting the X Runs (which I did improve my times on) I came close to this but didn’t quite achieve it. A few factors I didn’t count on came into play on this one. Number 1 was the length of the courses, I figure the 5k – 3 Mile distance for sprints was pretty black and white it never occurred to me that the course designers would make all three of my sprints 6k or more. So, my pace wasn’t fast enough to make up for that extra kilometer. Secondly was the burnout midseason, I didn’t get fast enough or really find a good pace for me until after the season but I did in time for my last two races of the year but those were really more road races so I don’t count them as an OCR. I missed the realistic goal by just two minutes, which just means got keeping working.
My goal was the same as 2016 and get 10 people to sign up.
Actually I did even worse this year, I was only able to get 4 people to sign up for a race where as last year I managed to get 6. That being said I did get my kids to race (1 of them twice) so that personally made up for it.
My 2 goals for the 4-0-300 Project were to get one other contributor on the blog and to get to the 90-post mark by the end of the year.
Didn’t get either of these. One would really help the other so I’ll try again this year.
Takeaways from 2017 that I’ll be looking to work on most.
Last year my focus was purely technique which I feel is vastly improving, but I didn’t have a solid plan on what to do with that new technique. I ran lots one week than not as much the next until I burnt out.
Plan: This year I’m focusing on following a better running program but also to be more consistent in adhering to that plan. Focusing on it from the view-point of it’s better for my dog is a big help, as well as changing the time of day I plan on doing most of my runs as running after dark is a little depressing. I’m following a schedule laid out by a running coach and focusing on better quality but less frequent than last year, so I can avoid burning out again.
Plan: I’m starting to implement pull-ups after every running session to get used to doing them tired. I’m starting off in having to do 20 working up to 50 and doing burpees for every time I come down from the bar (again a slowly increasing number). I’m also looking at building a rope climb in my backyard to practice technique. This year I’m also determined to find a jungle gym with high enough monkey bars to practice that a couple of times a week.
Building on the good
I feel like my running got better and my overall performance improved this year, I put this down to getting my nutrition on point (I’ve dropped 13 pounds since X Warrior last year) while still maintaining my strength. I think running less but with higher quality and a better plan is going to increase this even more. I really enjoy my strength workouts so this I’m pushing up the mass I’m lifting while preserving my running weight. I do feel like I’m genetically built for an event like TMX or Epic Series although I live nowhere close to a location hosting one, so this should be a successful and enjoyable plan for me to stick too.
Overall thoughts on the 2017 season
I had a great year, tried a new event in X Warrior while running my favorite Spartans again. I underestimated the events I ran so while the time wasn’t where I wanted I did feel like the quality and speed was better. The volunteering experience I had at the Calgary Spartan was a massive improvement over the one I had in 2015 and one that made me excited to do it again this year. As usual the OCR community is amazing and in Alberta it is booming, it’s so much fun to talk to other racers at the races and I look forward to seeing everyone again this year.
Now moving on to my goals for 2018.
Amount of Races
Ideal: 4 races
Realistic: 5, I feel like if I do only 4 my performance will be its strongest but I know I’ll get the itch to do more and will probably push a little past 4.
Last year for me was the “Year of the Sprint” so I focused on that distance only and while this year the same could be said I’m focusing on finishing faster and stronger. This season is going to be the “Year of Better”.
Ideal: 50-minute finish time
Realistic: is to shave 2 minutes off my best finish time at each venue. This way if they stay long or bump up a little bit I won’t be drastically underestimating the courses again this year, so instead an arbitrary number I pick, it will be based off the venue.
Same as the last 2 years is to get 10 other racers out. Now I think I might have a shot with X Warrior being a little bit more new racer friendly, but I always find this one the hardest goal therefore I guess I’ll just have to work and see.
The goal this year is to double the amount of posts on the blog, right now I’m at 58 so I’ll say 120 to have a nice round number. I plan on doing a weekly training recap so that should help. Also hoping to again find another poster but I’m not sure how that will go.
2017 didn’t always feel great until I stopped and actually looked at my successes, I plan on doing a better job of that in 2018. Hopefully building on my work over the last couple of years will continue to make me a better and better racer.