Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Setting Goals for 2012

When I got home tonight, I really wanted to go out and run, but I just didn't have it in me. Too tired from what seemed like a really long day at work. Too cold outside, too dark, too much trouble to get ready, too many excuses.

I did think about what I planned to do next year and my running goals for 2012. I want to set good, realistic goals that help me to progress. I think I did a good job setting goals for 2011 and I was able to meet or exceed most of them (the 24 minute 5k eluded me, but other than that I did well). So, here is what I've come up with for 2012:

1. Run a 22 minute 5k

Setting this number is a bit difficult. I think, under ideal conditions, I can run a 23 minute 5k now. The fact is that in the last 3 races I had a shot at 24 minutes, I wasn't all that close, with a best time of 24:39. I have excuses for each (oh I just ran a half-marathon last week, oh it's too cold, etc.) but in the end, I didn't do it.

I'm no where near my "potential", but I think a 20 minute 5k is a dream for next year. I would love to say I will be able to do 21 minutes, but after thinking about it, I just don't see it, especially if I'm not as fast now as I think I am. I think 22 minutes, at just over 7 minutes a mile, will be a good, realistic challenge.

2. Run a 1:50 half marathon

This means dropping over a minute a mile from my Brooksie Way time.

3. Place in a "big" race

To my surprise, I placed in quite a few races this year. However, most of those races had 6-8 people in my age group - the most people in my age group when I placed in the top 3 was 10. To define big is difficult. Even though it doesn't have a huge turnout, the Julie Run is big to me. Unless I improve exponentially, I won't medal in a huge race like the Ann Arbor Turkey Trot. I guess I'll know a big race when I see it.

4. Finish a 10k in 48 minutes

My only 10k race was run after running a PR 5k race as part of the Iron Turkey. As such, it wasn't representative of what my finish would be with good preparation on fresh legs. My guess is that I would finish in about 52 - 53 minutes now.

5. Run 900 miles

I didn't want to set a mileage goal, but I think I need to make sure I get enough miles in to meet my other goals. Why 900 miles? It is double of what I did this year and is in the middle of a 15-20 miles a week average.

What no marathon?

The first thing that people ask me after I mention that I ran a half-marathon is "When are you going to run a full marathon". I'm not planning to do a marathon next year. It isn't that I'm not interested or that I think I can't do it. When I run my first marathon, I want to be ready and to do well. Plus I need to smoke Jared from Subway's time by about an hour.

What are your goals? What do you think of mine? Lemme know in the comments section!


  1. I love the fact that you actually sit down and set goals. It's totally anal but just about the only way to accomplish anything. Nice Job!

    22 minute 5K seems really reasonable for you. I think at this point you would have to smoke crack to be able to break 20 min. Right now you are around 7:50 pace and to break 22 min. you would be around 7:10 pace...that is a great goal. If you were to break 20 you would have to drop all the way to 6:20...it's going to take base and speedwork but you know you will get there eventually. Good luck.

    Half marathon...see above comment on base. You'll get there.

    Place in a big race...that is going to have to be a long term goal. The bigger the race the faster the times. You can win a small 5K with an 18:00 or 19:00 but in the big races you better be 16:00 or under. Just how it is, the bigger races attract the finest. I do think the bigger races are more fun. You should just make a goal to run a few races with fields over 1000.

    Run 900 miles, love that one. Base, base, base. That's what makes you stronger and what will make you a winner like Charlie Sheen.

    Seems like people always want to talk marathons because its the most known distance. BUT there is a reason that half marathon fields are selling out faster than marathons. It's a sweet distance that is increasingly popular. The marathon hurts bad, can injure and takes a big time commitment to pull off. You'll know when you are ready.

    I like all your goals. I would just recommend working in some trail races. The April half in Hell is a dandy!!

    Merry Christmas and good luck. Be safe out there.

  2. Thanks Matt.

    I'm not typically a list maker, but I was excited to make this list. I think all these things are challenging, but attainable for me. I'm probably going to make a list of what I think I need to do to reach these goals in the near future. I think that if you want to reach goals, you need a plan, or at least an outline of a plan. :)

    I'll need to check out and consider the Trail April Half in Hell you mentioned. I am going to shoot for April as the first half of the year. Maybe I'll do one a couple weeks earlier, then this one. I was thinking about the one that same weekend in Macomb County, but I'm not committed to it. It is all going to come up real fast - need to get back to a more regular training program by late January.

    No messing around next year. I'm not planning on going overboard and hurting myself, but Running 101 is just about over....