Friday, December 16, 2011

the 2012 race schedule

So, it looks from the blog world like this was the week to post my 2012 race schedule and I almost missed it.  
Obviously, I decided last July what my big A race would be for the year: Ironman Coeur D'Alene.  I was a little terrified right away about what I had decided to do, but the more planning I do, the less worried I feel. The only real goal I'm setting for myself is to have a really excellent day.  I'm sure that I will have rough ideas about what I think I can do as I get closer to the race, but those are secondary.  Right now I feeling calm and centered about this distance.  I'm finally starting to wrap my hard head around what this training cycle is all about, and I'm excited to execute, execute, execute - even if executing means taking it easy and not setting fire to the track.  I've only been with my coach for a couple of weeks, but I've been stalking her racing for a long time and I feel confident that she can get me there in one piece (hopefully she feels the same).  So here's how I built my 2012 race schedule around that.  I've also decided not to sign up for any races after CDA until it has come and gone, so (lame cop-out ahead) this is really just my race schedule for the first 6 months of the year.  


Over the last 2 years, I think I've calculated that I've run 21 5Ks.  21!  That's a lot of times at that distance.  But I've raced it less than 5 times.  The 5K has always been my coming-back-from-injury race, the first time that I get back out there after being sidelined by something devastating, and I'm tired of it.  I also really despise the distance, because when done properly, it sucks balls. Race schedule ingredient #1: I will run no 5Ks in 2012.
I've also done a lot of races just as training runs.  I've run several distances this way, and I'm a little tired of having so many 10-minute-mile races to my name.  In the giant pile of running races I did in 2011, I think I only tried to race the living crap out of 2 or 3.  I want to have a different attitude towards 2012.  I want to race less often, and I want to prepare, taper, and then empty the tank every time I do.  Race schedule ingredient #2: I will run less (or no) races as training runs in 2012.
I think it's fair to say that I still haven't gotten on top of the 70.3 distance yet on the run.  On the swim and bike legs, I've been able to put up halfway decent times, but the run leg still evades me.  However, if I examine my training cycles leading up to the 70.3 and the conditions of race day, I find that I haven't done a great job at planning well for either of those things.  Race schedule ingredient #3: I will be smart about choosing a 70.3 and I will not let it eat me alive.
And finally, the distance I moan about not having a PR the most: the 10 miler.  For some reason I just haven't run one of these suckers in about 6 years, and I've only run one in my life.  My "official" PR is 1:53 and I've beaten that on the way to every 13.1 I ran this year, as well as on dozens of training runs.  Race schedule ingredient #4: I will race the balls off a 10 miler.
That said, here's how 2012 is laid out as of right now (i.e. races I am registered for currently).


National Half Marathon - 3/17/12
Parkway Classic 10M - 4/22/12
Monticelloman 70.3 - 5/6/12
Ironman Coeur d'Alene - 6/24/12


After all that build-up, what a letdown, huh?  I've decided to not plan anything for January/February so I can just have solid training without interruption for racing and recovery (unless my coach decides otherwise).  I have a pretty serious score to settle with the National Half, and that will hopefully be the day I finally get that sub-1:50 I've been yammering on about all year.  The 10 miler will fall about 2 weeks out from my 70.3, but the fabulous thing about my current PR is that I can race it fairly conservatively and still PR the living daylights out of it.  I spent a lot of time with Emily searching for the perfect spring 70.3 even though she backed out to run a stupid marathon and I think Monticelloman is the one.  There's a 2 mile lake swim the last weekend of May that I might add, and I might jump in some other small races along the way, but I also might....not.  
I'm really not sure what I'll feel like doing after CDA.  I hate running in the heat, so I'll probably want to just dust off my road bike and rack up a billion miles for a while.  Depending on how the summer shakes out, I will probably choose a fall A race that's either a 13.1 or a 70.3 or a 26.2 (yeah, I said it) if I'm feeling really sassy.  I should also do an entire olympic-distance triathlon at some point instead of just doing one leg once a year.  Or maybe a sprint, I haven't done a sprint since my first triathlon ever.  But I don't know how I'll feel after ironman, so maybe I'll do none of those things.  The good thing is, I don't have to decide that until June.


What does your race schedule look like for 2012?  How do you build it?

37 comments:

  1. Love that you're being smart!! I am in the same boat - no more junk races!! Can't wait to see how 2012 turns out! I know it will be epic!! Love ya to pieces!

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  2. Don't have one, just looking at two spring marathons, then hopefully got my own race on in September... Oh, and a running magazine launch in Spring! Lots going on!

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  3. I think your plans sound great. After Ironman the only race you may want to partake in for the rest of the summer is beer drinking. and that's ok :)

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  4. You have a great plan here. Maybe our paths will eventually cross. I'm not sure why so many bloggers are getting caught up in next year already - I'm kind of enjoying the moment right now of running for fun and closing off the year on a high note. After briefly getting obsessed about 2012 a month or so ago, I enjoy not stressing about it right now.

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  5. Whoops. Marathons are stupid, I'll cop to that.

    Anyway, I'm also making it my goal this year to be really smart about planning and base all of my races around my actual season objectives. So, no racing for training, no junk races. Oh, and actual training cycles. What an odd concept.

    When you're ready to dust off that road bike, I'll be waiting :)

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  6. My sherpa calendar revolves around the hub's calendar which looks like this: National Half and Buffalo Springs Lake 70.3 (goal is Kona Qualifying).

    There will likely be a few other races pre BSL, but those are TBD.

    The fall schedule is based on: where we're living and Kona qualifying.

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  7. Damnit, another Blogger rule that I missed. Okay, London marathon in 2012 for me........

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  8. You're ahead of me! I'm contemplating this very thing!! Love the booty shots!

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  9. That's the race schedule of someone truly seeking a goal. No fluffy races, no for the hell of it BS races... Just balls to the wall racing to an ultimate goal.

    I like it. I have a feeling you're gonna kill it in 2012. (Or, at the very least kill someone from all that IM training... either way it will be fun for us to read about!).

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  10. I like the rules and the schedule! Though I think if you show up to race the National Half on March 27 you will be sorely disappointed when no one else is there. ;)

    Unlike you, I am actually thinking I would like to do a lot more 5ks and 10ks in 2012 since I feel like I've been so focused on longer races recently. However, I'm trying to hold strong to my resolution not to register for anything until after Goofy (a mini version of your CDA pledge) even though I have already spent far too much time thinking about spring races.

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  11. I think it is very smart to wait until after the IM to see how you feel about fall racing.
    I have a few A races in mind for 2012, but I'm waiting to see what life is like in CO before I start registering.

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  12. I am done with running races as training as well. It's defeating for me. I like the less is more approach. I always start that way at the beginning of the year.

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  13. I'm still trying to figure out early 2012, but the middle of the year is spoken for with my first tris in April and May (sprint and Olympic with the same group) and then the Berlin Marathon in September. Other ingredients: I actually want to race a 5K because I've NEVER run one, not even as a fun run. I'm also looking for a 10-miler, and I've rarely seen them around here but there's one in January, which is just further messing with my early 2012 plans.

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  14. I'm contemplating a sprint tri for early June. Registration opens in 2 weeks so I will be making that decision soon I think.
    I have never raced a 10 miler before. Maybe I'll try to do one of those this year too.
    I am definitely planning to race at least one half marathon and try to break 2 hours! I'll probably do the Parks Half again because I like the Brooks long-sleeved shirts and the post-race party.

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  15. Is it really bad that most of my race schedule has been determined based on discount codes and my desire to see the country? haha I'm a sucker for a good deal and a few of these dang RnRs were just too good to pass up.

    1/29 Tinkerbell Half
    2/19 Pasadena RnR Half
    3/10 Pasadena Duathlon (my first du!)
    4/20-21 Ragnar Relay So Cal (my first relay!)
    5/20 Portland RnR Half
    7/22 Chicago RnR Half
    9/16 Maui Half

    I'll also be chilling out on the 5Ks. I have a tendency to want to support every single charity cause that is out there and I should probably save my pennies (and my legs) for my many destination races.

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  16. For 2012, my goal is to run one marathon a month. So far, I've only lined up January (Bermuda), February (Austin), and May (Vermont City), but I will likely do National for March. I'm just trying to find races that are either interesting or that I have a history with, and not pick them so much based on terrain. I find that's a lot less important to my times than just the randomness of how I'm feeling that day.

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  17. Right now, Cherry Blossom 10M is the only one on the schedule since I somehow managed to break through the lottery. Timing is good for it, though, and I'll probably find a half within 30 days of that to race. And then...my retirement marathon. We'll see.

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  18. Good, solid year in there to get you to CDA! You're going to have a blast!

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  19. I think that's a great plan. I'm with you and am not signing up for anything after my IM until I see how I feel. I was thinking about doing the kinetic half aqua velo as a training race before my 70.3 but I don't know. I will def. be doing the 2 mile open water swim though :)

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  20. Yeah what's up with someone getting us all on board for a 70.3 then ditching us for a "cute" marathon. Sheesh! I think ur stalking me. 50% of those races I'm doing. Hhhhmmmmm

    U will know concrete Ironman splits 3 weeks out when taper begins.

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  21. I'm thinking about doing the Parkway Classic 10 Miler too. I really liked that part of the course when I did the Woodrow Wilson half in October and I'd like to tackle it again.

    Plus I've done Cherry Blossom twice already, so I think it's time for a different spring 5K

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  22. and by 5K i obviously meant 10 miler...what was I thinking.

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  23. In the last two years I've done 30 races! Next year I'd like to race less often and focus on just a few races. Of course that is what I say now ...

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  24. I loathe the 5k distance. It hurts too much. Maybe hurts even more than an Ironman!!
    I think that your plan to not plan anything in stone until after the IM is smart. After the first IM I did, I felt like S**T for about 2 months, then this year, I bounced back in 1 week with no consequences. See how you feel then roll with it! I like the schedule you have set up for the first part of the year! You have the right mind set/frame of mind going into it.

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  25. Love this. You are so focused. ::high fives::

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  26. I'm doing a sprint, an olympic and lots of 1/2 marathons... I didn't pick a 70.3 hmmm... I didn't do that last time I did an IM either but now you are making me question my self..

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  27. Wonderful ingredients. Save races for when you truly RACE and you will have a renewed sense of energy! I like your schedule and your plans for 2012!

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  28. I love the schedule and I'm excited for you to give that 10 mile PR the boot! :)

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  29. Regarding using races as training...I *DO* think there is something to be said for having a race on your calendar where your main objective is to practice your race strategy/nutrition/etc and just get used to racing to manage your nerves. But not go balls to the wall. It's a tough balance to find, since too many of those races can take away from your overall training.

    I still like tune up races. Half marathon for a marathon, 10k or 10M for a half marathon, etc. Keeps your nerves in check on race day and gives you and idea of where you are so that you can reassess.

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  30. All you damn overachievers with your ability to put together a full race schedule months in advance. Maybe I'll make that this weekend's project.

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  31. LOVE your 2012 goals!! I think you are setting yourself up for a stellar year! And the 10 mile distance is pretty much the best distance ever. I, too, have my eye on the Monticelloman triathlon.

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  32. Haha, I almost posted this exact thing yesterday :) I love the ingredients for the first half of the year!

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  33. I like the plan. Leaves lots of open weekends for fun trail runs and bike rides!

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  34. After CdA you'll want to take at least 2 weeks with no more than 2 runs of 3 miles or less. It takes forever to recover from an Ironman. I didn't feel comfortable in the pool for a month. and i'm still biking as little as possible. But I did start running too soon and it's got me feeling rough now.

    I still haven't finalized my 2012 schedule yet either. So at least you aren't last.

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  35. Did I miss race ingredient #3 or did you just skip that altogether?

    I put my 2012 sched up a week or two ago (can't remember) but I pick what I want as my A races and work backwards from there with my coach on what is to be raced or trained for.

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  36. Warning - I'm totally going to stalk your CDA training b/c I'm considering that race for 2013. Can't wait to hear all about it!

    As for my 2012 race schedule, I'm having the same issues with the 70.3. I can't figure out which ones to do. I'm likely doing Skipjack in Sept which is actually a 75.2, but I'd like to do another one in August. Maybe the DC 70.3 or Timberman.

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