Saturday morning is the official start of group training. I’ll miss it. My schedule will shift though so I can join the group next Saturday (and hop aboard the evening run on Wednesday).
I cannot wait to see what new lessons group training has in store for me this year.
I learned a lot about myself last year — perseverance, small steps building up to big things, and the flush of meeting what I originally assumed would be an insurmountable goal. I also experience the pure joy of seeing people show up along the route and support me as I completed the task. Great memories.
This year I’m already running 13 miles comfortably (and pain-free) before training begins, as I did Thursday at a very comfortable pace (and relatively fast for me). I’m eating better and supplementing my diet with protein shakes for strength. I have a year’s worth of experience to build upon.
The plan is to control what I can — pacing, practice, and rest — while trying to let go of what I cannot, namely injury or the unforeseen.
I’m also excitedly looking forward to forging new friendships and continuing to enjoy those I made from last year’s group. If you are new to running, or considering it, most runners I meet are driven, good people to know.
And if you aren’t sure what race you will run this coming spring, I thought I would end this post by sharing a great list of races coming up for those with a varied level of fitness going into the new year. You should go check out the Spring 2012 Marathon Guide.