Does anyone else feel like it was just September, we blinked, and now here we are on the brink of 2017?
2016 has been whacky across the board, and personally, I’ve gone through a lot of highs and lows.
It wasn’t until this year when I registered for my first marathon that I had ever committed to something as physically demanding as that training schedule proved to be, and I loved it. Even though I didn’t reach my race goal, I learned a lot about what I can do, and what I need to do, in order to run well and stay healthy.
This year was also the year I started trail running, ironically so, given my goal race. Although I used to run the Bruce Trail and other trails through our property growing up in Mono Centre, it wasn’t until I stumbled across the 5 Peaks series that I realized that trail running was a thing and I was instantly in love.
In 2016, I had some great 5 Peaks races, a muddy, soupy 14km run at The Limberlost Challenge, an awesome race and finish at Haliburton Forest 26km and a fun 10k at the Toronto Oasis ZooRun.
The running community is awesome – and I feel so so lucky to have met such amazing people this year. I am not originally from Toronto and although I do have a great group of friends here, with work and life’s tendency to be so busy, you can become pretty insulated and it can be hard to expand your circle. The first few times is always hard showing up somewhere not knowing anyone – you’re not quite sure if you’ll be able to keep up, if people will talk to you, or if you’ll be able to keep your resting ‘bish face in check (major problem for me – also scientifically proven to be a REAL thing). But I soon realized that I would at least have a love for the sport in common with whoever else shows up and, unlike your other friends, these people will actually WANT to talk about paces, gear and goal races. Instagram ,Twitter and Facebook have also been great for this, and I’ve been able to connect with so many people, like The Burly Trail Runners, as a result of just putting myself out there.
The low of 2016 was definitely not being able to make my goal race, and dealing with an injury since mid-September. It’s also meant missing out on countless runs with friends and left me a little squirrely. I’m starting to slowly work my way out of it, and through the process I’ve learned a lot about cross-training and listening to my body at the first sign it’s telling me something’s not right. The last three months have been tough but also has given me time to work on strength and connect with others who have had to deal with similar issues in the past. I’ve been out on a few runs in the last few couple of weeks, and so far so good, so fingers crossed.
2017 will definitely be filled with almost as many squats as kilometres.
I’m not much a resolution person but I am a planner, soooo on that note:
April 8th – Race Roster Spring Run Off – Hoping to convince my non-running friends to become running friends and join me through High Park (post-race Pancake Breakfast to follow – how could they say no?)
April 22 – 5 Peaks Race – Terra Cotta
May 13th – Seaton Soaker 25km trail
June 3rd – Cayuga Trail Marathon – Ithaca NY
July 8th – Potentially Limberlost again if I had some friends who wanted to join (HINT HINT)
July 22 – 5 Peaks Albion Hills
September 9- UTCH Harricana 65km trail at mont Grand-Fonds ski resort, La Malbaie, Québec
Again these are GOAL races and will be determined on how my training goes and body holds up. Really the ultimate goal this year is to get this knee back in good shape and get my mileage back up so I can get back onto a solid training plan, which will include MORE strength training and more km’s on trails than pavement.
I also got something other than bills and pizza flyers in the mail this week: My Parks Canada Pass for 2017 and very official Bruce Trail Membership (HOORAY and thanks Mum!) so I’ll be logging lots of miles with friends this year on ol’ Bruce who are looking to complete a full end to end run, and maybe even collect some badges along the way!
AHHHHHHH, 2017, I’m excited for you!