Monday, 13 March 2017

2017 Running Goals: First Check-In

I usually only do my first running goal check-in post for the year in April, but I've made such good progress with all five of my running goals so far that I just can't wait any longer!  This is in stark contrast to both 2015 and 2016, where I literally waited until the last week or two of December to tick some goals off my list, ahem...  So, yay!  I'm really happy with such good progress so early in the year.

Just a quick reminder of my running goals for 2017:

And here's how I've done so far:

1.  Join parkrun's Club 100 before my 40th birthday

I'm getting there!  I completed parkrun #91 this past Saturday, so there's only nine more to go...!  But, if you do the math, you'll see that there's only eight Saturdays left before my 40th birthday on 10 May...  Boo!  So technically it's no longer possible to earn that black shirt before I turn 40.  In my defence, the parkrun event that I missed this year was cancelled on account of flooding of the course.  And, at the rate that it's currently raining, there might even be more cancellations in the near future.  Ugh, so frustrating!

But even though it's frustrating, the reasoning behind this goal was/is to consistently do parkrun throughout the year, and I think that that's being done where possible.  So I'm not too bothered about joining Club 100 a week or two later than planned.  Fingers crossed that I can check this goal off by the end of May!      

2.  Complete four new-to-me New Zealand parkruns

I dove straight into this one on the first day of 2017 by completing the New Year's parkrun double at Lower Hutt and Porirua parkruns, woot!  

I must admit that Lower Hutt parkrun was a bit of a shock to the system...  The weather was horrendous and the wind literally blew me right off the path at least once or twice.  I know that the weather is probably not that bad every weekend, but I sure do have a new-found respect for the hard core Lower Huttees who brave that wind on a regular basis!

Toughing it out with the hard core Lower Huttees.

Porirua parkrun, on the other hand, was bliss.  Although it was also raining, the route is absolutely amazing and it's without a doubt one of the most beautiful parkruns I've ever done.  I can't wait to go visit again!

Porirua parkrun.

So that's two new-to-me NZ parkruns down and two more to go.

3.  Comfortably complete two half-marathons

I completed the Cigna Round the Bays Half Marathon on 19 February and it was just a perfect race in every way.  My training went right according to plan, and I started training early enough to even schedule in two distance cut-back weeks.  I think that's a lifetime first for me!  I also recovered and rested enough between long runs, and as a result every long run felt comfortable and manageable.

The race itself was tough, because I really pushed it pace-wise, but I definitely felt ready for it and up to it.  So, yes, I think that I can safely tick off the first half of this goal.  One comfortable half-marathon down, one to go!  

4.  Clock a half-marathon PB (i.e. anything below 01:56:12)

The Cigna Round the Bays Half also gave me a band new half-marathon PB!  I knocked almost four minutes off my previous PB to clock a 01:52:21, and now, of course, I want to go below 01:50:00...  But that's a goal for another year, ha!  For now I'm just enjoying having reached this one.  

5.  Find and implement five ways in which to do good to others through running

I recently discovered the Charity Miles app based on a reader's recommendation, and although I don't track all my runs through it, it's good to know that I'm making a difference when I do.  So why am I not quite all in?  Well, I must admit that I was hoping that for every mile run, it would contribute a specified amount of money to a charity of choice.  But, instead, as I understand it, there's a set pot of money, and the miles you log only increases the percentage of that pot that goes to your selected charity.  So for me personally it kind of feels that what I "earn" for my charity of choice is sort of "taken away" from another...?  Anyone else feel that way?

Anyway, I'm also planning to enter a virtual race raising funds for autism in April, as well as a local race benefiting troubled youth towards the end of March.  There's definitely still a bit of work to be done on this one!

How have you progressed with your running goals for 2017?  Please share your updates, so we can cheer each other on!  

Happy running!          

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