I ended the year with 2290.1 running miles according to Strava (and 42,710 feet of elevation gain!). I’ve never set a yearly mileage goal, but it's fun to see what I end up with. It’s nice to be over 2016 miles – and also to know I have more to give since I had 8 weeks of no running mileage in 2016. Those weeks almost completely accounted for my cycling mileage total of 876, as I got a little obsessed with biking over 100 miles per week for a hot second (this quickly changed to 0 once I could run again, haha!).
I figured out my weekly mileage average - 2290 divided by the 44 weeks I was running - and it came out to be 52.05 miles per week. If you count the 8 weeks I was off running and take 2290 divided by 52 total weeks in the year, it's only 44 miles per week average, so I like the first calculation better. Now I might pay attention to this in 2017!
My race results (with disclaimers!) for the year are below. I raced quite a bit – 19 times to be exact! – so there would have been no way for me to be at peak for all of them, and in fact I trained through more of them than not since my fall marathons were my big goals. My performances early in the year showed that I was coming off an injury and didn’t have the mileage base I needed to run my best (looking at the big picture now, I’m not sure why I expected to race any better than I did on as little training as I’d had, but I guess I was hoping to ride on my 2015 fitness). Overall, I’d say that I was at worst reasonably happy with my performance in every race from September on (I never seem to be completely satisfied with anything I run!), so I’ve listed them in reverse order. PRs are bolded. I also added my Garmin paces after my friend Liz did it on her 2016 running review, as I thought that was a clever idea, especially for the non-certified races!
What was good
Why I have more to give*
|Dec. 10||Christmas Mile “5K”||19:08; actual 5K was 18:30ish (5:57 pace)||I averaged 5:57 pace on my Garmin and won overall female.||The race director announced on the starting line that the course was long, so I know I can and did run better than my official time. The course was mediocre (hair pin turn, two sharp turns you had to slow down for to avoid running into a brick planter or a tree, some elevation), so I know I can also go faster on a better course. The windchill was 18 degrees, I didn’t rest for the race, and I’d run a hard mile less than 30 minutes before.|
|Dec. 10||Christmas Mile||5:34||I raced a mile “for fun” and without panicking! The course was nice and I won overall female.||The windchill was 18 degrees (a little too cold to run fast!), most of the race was into a headwind, and I didn’t rest for the race.|
|Nov. 24||Joplin Turkey Trot 5K||18:42 (6:01 pace)||I ran in the 18’s on a certified course, the weather was great, and I won overall female.||The course had 160+ ft elevation gain, and I was 5 days off of a half marathon.|
|Nov. 19||White River Half Marathon||1:22:37 (6:18 pace)
||Everything! PR and strongest performance of my year! If I don't find anything to be disappointed about, things were nearly perfect. The course was perfect, the temperature was perfect (mid-30s), I ran a beautiful negative split, I won overall female, and I felt great. I beat my 10K PR in the final 10K and my 15K PR in the final 15K.||I’m not sure I do…however, I am going to try! I hope that running a larger event with other runners (and particularly other women) around me will help me run faster. I guess in theory not being 13 days off my second marathon within a month should also help!|
|Nov. 6||Bass Pro Marathon||2:59:04 (6:44 pace)||I paced well and ran a nice negative split and strong final 10K, the weather was great, and I won 3rd overall female. I ran my second sub-3:00 marathon 4 weeks after my first!||I ran 0.20+ over the course distance due a wrong turn in mile 20, which cost me a PR…and I am still very mad at myself about it. This was my ‘B’ marathon so I didn’t peak for it (although my coach did work to find the formula for another sub-3:00 for me, and he did well), and the course was mediocre.|
|Oct. 22||Ozark Rotary Trick or Trot 5K||18:46 (6:02 pace)||I ran a 5K in the 18s and beat all the men and women!||It was 74 degrees, a tiny 5:00 p.m. race, and I trained through it, including a double on race day.|
|Oct. 15||Waddell & Reed Half Marathon (for training)||1:33:04 (7:02 pace/ training run)||I had fun and ran at a training-ish pace until the final 5K. Unbeknownst to me until afterwards, I was 4th overall female in a huge race.||I didn’t race this one since it was 6 days after a marathon and I didn’t want to sabotage my recovery for my next marathon (I had a free entry or I wouldn’t have run it at all); I believe I'd have run about 10 minutes faster had I raced it, but I also might have bonked with Prairie Fire just on my legs. I almost caught the 3rd female at the end so kind of wished I'd run the final 4 miles harder instead of just the final 3...or that I'd run it at my marathon pace since that would have gotten me the win.|
|Oct. 9||Prairie Fire Marathon||2:58:53 (6:47 pace)
||Marathon PR and my first sub-3:00! 9th fastest marathon ever run by a female in the state of Kansas, and 3rd fastest for age group 35-39 (although only 4th overall in this race!).||I ran 20 miles of the race solo, the course was mediocre, and it was a tad too warm (55-60 degrees). I had a horrible stomach bug that landed me in Urgent Care 10 days before the race, which certainly couldn’t have helped.|
|Sep. 18||Tiger Trot 15K||59:19 (6:20 pace)
||PR and my first sub-1:00 15K, and beat all the men and women.||2 miles of the course were on horrible rocky dirt roads and those miles were significantly slower (30ish seconds) than all my others; without them I’d have easily been in the mid-58s. It was 70 degrees, I ran solo from mile 4 on, and I was 4 days off of a 24 miler. I ran faster in the final 15K of my half PR, so I know I’ve got more in me!|
|Sep. 5||Run for a Child’s Hunger 10K||38:43 (6:13 pace)
||PR and my first sub-39:00 certified 10K! I was 3rd female behind two pros.||It was Labor Day in Arkansas (hot and humid), the course had 220+ ft elevation gain, and I was 5 days off a 22 miler. I ran faster in the final 10K of my half PR, so I know I’ve got that in me for an official one!|
|Sep. 3||K-Life “5K”||20:31; actual 5K was 19:20ish (6:13 pace)||I accomplished my goal of winning overall by running at 10K effort, and also nailed my 10K pace as shown two days later!||I didn’t run all-out because I wanted to save my legs for my 10K two days later.|
|July 23||Bentley Fund 5K||19:36 (6:12 pace)||………………………..
Well, I guess I did not bonk at mile 1.
|I bonked at mile 2 and my final mile was slower than my half marathon pace. It was hot and humid, but I’m not really sure why I ran so poorly or felt so horrible. I didn’t rest for it, but it was only a 5K.|
|June 25||Sertoma Duck Waddle 5K||19:35 (6:18)||I beat all of the men and women, and won a gift certificate for free pet sitting!||I didn’t have anyone to run with, it was super warm and humid, I ran this as a progressive tempo during a long run, and I wasn’t rested.|
|June 4||River Run 10K||42:08 (6:43 pace)||This had the same final 2 miles as the Prairie Fire Marathon, and my Strava kindly told me that my best times on segments on that stretch were run in the marathon (that’s how bad the final 2 miles of this 10K were). I did still win my age group.||I felt like death in this race and called it my Epic Fail of 2016. I’d been in Chicago for work the week before, and I guess I just had nothing left to give. I learned not to race under these circumstances again - something is always learned!|
|May 14||Scout Strong Half Marathon||1:29:04 (6:44 pace)||I ran this more for place than time, and accomplished my goal of winning overall female. I also met a new friend who I've kept in touch with!||See “what was good.” Also it was SUPER windy.|
|May 7||Bradleyville 5K||19:16 (Garmin would not work in the remote location - course splits were 6:14, 6:18, 6:03 but likely wrong)||It was a miracle I pulled this time off on 6.5 weeks of running training…although I’m skeptical that the course was accurate because I wasn’t in good enough shape to run this on the crazy hills of that course or really even on a good course (it was not certified).||This course was the hilliest 5K I’ve ever run, it was warm when we weren’t yet used to warm weather running, I was 6 days off of the Prairie Fire Half, and I wasn't in the best shape.|
|May 1||Prairie Fire Half Marathon||1:27:51 (6:42 pace)||It was a miracle I pulled this time off on 6 weeks of running training and after food poisoning on Thursday evening before the Sunday race; I was worried I wouldn’t break 1:30. The temperature was nice and I ran a negative split.||Honestly this went as well as it could have considering; obviously having more training on my legs and not having food poisoning on Thursday would have helped. Also it was windy as per usual in Kansas.|
|April 2||Big Party Half Marathon – Pace Group Leader||1:39:15; paced the 1:40 group (7:33 pace)||Pacer, free entry, great charity, and running at base pace to help others! I ended up getting an age group award too.||Not racing was hard, and the course was a little short or I’d have been 1:39:5X (I was a good pacer, I promise!)! My bicep got sore from carrying the pace sign.|
|March 26||Easter Sun Run 10K||41:13 (6:35 pace)||The only redeeming factor for this race was that I won $100.||I was a last-minute entry; I’d run a 6 mile tempo run at 6:26 pace a few days before this race on almost no running training (how exactly I am not sure! - was my Garmin off that day?!), but I quickly learned I was not in good enough shape to run a solid race with no rest before.|
I’m excited to say this: 2016 will be hard to top. But I know I have more to give! Will I always say this after every race? Most likely! There will always be age-graded bests to chase, right?
My 2015 race results are shown here.
I encourage everyone to go out and be your best in 2017!
Here are also my favorite running-related photos of 2016. I probably don't have more to give as far as race photos go; I've given up on taking good running photos except during my warm-up!
|We all ran an event at the Prairie Fire spring races|
|Race face in the Sparky Kids Mile, haha!|
|I was warming up so this photo is okay|
|Albani had a photo finish half mile after I ran my 15K PR|
|My first sub-3:00, at Prairie Fire|
|Post-marathon emotion & exhaustion|
|Fall Prairie Fire Kids Marathon = happier photos|
|Bass Pro Expo|
|My second sub-3:00, although I ran farther than 26.2, at Bass Pro|
|Half PR + double chin|
|White River Half awards|
|Proof I ran in the 18s in a certified 5K|