2017 Goals

What do I want to achieve with my running this year?  Despite injuries, I achieved most of what I wanted although there’s still plenty of room for improvement – especially in consistency.  So, in no particular order, here goes!

  • Sydney Summer Series – improving my map reading, route planning and distance I can cover.  This year is still very much a year of working on myself, especially now Nick and I run separately so while we compare our planned routes, we do them slightly differently since Nick can go further than me in the 45 minute time limit.
  • 3+ Rogaines: I think we will again only manage 3, but I’d like to do more.  If I can remain injury free, I’d love to get up to 30km in a 6hr rogaine and hit half marathon distance in a 3hr event.
  • Great NOSH Footrace: See if I can hit the <2hr time goal this year!  The first part of the race is now my local long run trail, so see if that helps at all.
  • Turkey Trot: Will try for sub 1hr 40min this year on the medium course.
  • Manly Trail Series: Would love to get along to one of these and see what it is like.

Non-event specific goals:

  • Increase my long run distance from 10km to 15km
  • Continue focusing on increasing my cadence – easier to do on road runs than trails though!
  • Explore the local trails and find some good regular routes.
  • Consistency: 2-3 runs per week, every week
  • Aim for 600km total distance for 2017
  • NO overuse injuries this year!

Phew!  I think that’s enough to keep me focused.  I’m really enjoying the Rogaines and the orienteering events we’re doing, so want to focus more on trails and increasing my distance.  I’m not as concerned with pace as it’s impacted so much by the quality of a trail and the elevation involved, t’s time on feet that will help me the most with the longer events.

Photos of a Run

Moved into our new home, plotted out an approx 10km trail based on maps from Wildwalks (awesome resource for finding trails and detailed directions!) and very limited local knowledge.  The run started pleasantly enough, saw some of the local wildlife, scrambled down a steep, but well defined trail and continued along the river edge.  The track rapidly deteriorated, turned into a slow bush bash along poorly defined track with the occasional tape tied to a tree letting me know I wasn’t completely lost.  Struggled to find the crossing for the first river, but after that it became a little easier, with the trail eventually becoming runnable again.  My “quick” 10km had turned into a two and a half hour slog.  Fortunately I had planned and taken water with me and some jelly beans.  Since I was walking, and I’m unlikely to take this exact route again, I took a few photos:

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Doesn’t get much better than this – shortly after this photo I came across a wallaby grazing by the trail!

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Gorgeous views

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The river

The trail rapidly deteriorated

The trail rapidly deteriorated

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Thank goodness for tape on trees

Finally found the first river crossing

Finally found the first river crossing

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On the other side and a bit of open space!

Bungaroo river crossing

Bungaroo river crossing

Finally back on defined trails again!

Finally back on defined trails again!

Another river crossing!

Another river crossing!

Still gorgeous scenery

Still gorgeous scenery

Nearly there!

Nearly there!

And I made it to the end.  Where my husband and girls were patiently waiting for me.  Never again!

Goals from 2016

So how did I go in 2016 for the goals I set myself at the start of the year?  Below is my list from early in the year:

  • Sydney Summer Series: Finished the season having made it to 12 of the 26 events.  Since your top 12 scores are taken into account for the final tally, this was my goal to get to.  I didn’t do well, but the aim was to get along and just keep going and improving my map skills, route planning, etc.  Ran most of them with Nick which had its good and bad points (for both of us!).
  • 2-3 Rogaines: Squeezed in 3 rogaines this year!  Two earlier in the year and the final one at the end of November.  We only made it to the metro events, so I’m hoping to get along to something a little further afield in the next couple of years.
  • Great Nosh Footrace (16k) <2hrs: First date was rained out by an absolute deluge and storm that destroyed parts of Sydney’s coastline.  Made it to the new date and had trouble with my achilles cramping in both legs again this year.  Along with the additional distance and elevation, I only managed the same time as the previous year.  Checking a few other people that I know ran both years, it seems everyone ran a little worse this year than previously.
  • Turkey Trot (12k) <1:40: Made it in 1hr 48m for over 13km of navigation.  This was a pleasant run together and was interesting seeing more of the trails in the suburbs.  Maybe make the time goal next time!
  • 2 Metro League: Made it along to one.  Didn’t really enjoy it.  Didn’t look too hard for another to get to.  Might try again this year if it’s convenient and we have nothing else on.
  • Goanna – medium: Did it!  Took a little while to get my head in the map, was a very slooooow run, but interesting area that I haven’t been into before.  Much more a bush navigation than most orienteering events I’ve done.
  • Parkrun – regular sub-30’s: Ha!  Haven’t managed a single sub-30 5km the entire year.  Only made it along to a few Parkruns early in the year and we haven’t been back.  A lot of other things took over our lives this year, but with a new Parkrun recently started where we now live, maybe we will get along this year.  Then again, maybe not.

Coming soon: Goals for 2017

Summer Series – Curl Curl

It was hot, it was humid, as usual we were rushed despite being on holidays. At least I had remembered everything – until the minute before starting I realised I had forgotten the Garmin!  Dammit – this completely threw me off, it helps me plan, lets me keep an eye on pace and make sure I don’t head out too hard, plus I love doing the post run review of distance, elevation, timings.  I had my step counter, so at least I knew the time and could try and make sure I was back on time.

Our plan was made, alternate finishes plotted out depending on time left and off we went.  Nice and steady for the first several controls, a guy just in front of me set a steady pace that worked for me until we split off after 4 controls.  Then, for me, it was up, up, up the hill.  I saw Nick at an odd location, but thought no more of it – he should have been well ahead of me still.  I continued up the hill and then the long slog to the next control out near the coastline. Overshot the next control – misread the description – and probably lost about 2 minutes here as I headed down, then back up, about 15m.  Some downhill next to push and try to make up the time I lost, replotting my course as I went, knowing at this point I was probably going to be late back.  Nick swung past me as we hit the flat again having taken a different, longer and higher scoring route.  Close to the end and I tried to push, but I was all out of puff.  Made it back 3:30 over time for a 40 point penalty on my already low score.  Not my best effort, but a good run for a hot day.

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Plotting my course later on Google Earth gave me 6.3km!  My longest Summer Series this season, including an extra 100m+ of elevation.  Nick covered 129m up and down, and my route looked a bit more than that.  No wonder I was tired.

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Post run review pointed out that I had forgotten to pick up a 30 point control before heading up the hill… This is why I caught up to Nick in the middle, it would have cost me maybe a minute to grab the control and even adding that minute to my late penalty it would have put me further ahead.  Ah well, better luck next time!

Of course, manually entering the run into Garmin/Strava has meant it doesn’t show accurately on anything, so it hasn’t been counted towards any of the sites that I link to.  Ah well, can only improve on things for 2017!

The Year That Was – The Numbers

And just like that, another year is gone.  2016 went out with a whimper – running wise anyway.  So what did my year look like:

  • Distance: 468km
  • Elevation: 6,286m
  • Runs: 70

Didn’t reach my goal of 500km for the year.  4 months of very low distances due to injury made sure of that.  I did, however, increase my monthly average km’s from 30km in 2015 to 40-50km/mth for the months I was fit enough to run.  And elevation increased from 3500m – the majority of my runs now include some hills, with a flat run being a bit of a treat instead of the norm.  I only increased the number of runs I did in the year by 10, again, being laid up for nearly a third of the year with injuries  didn’t help there.

For this year?  A goal of 600km total distance, a treadmill so I can fit in more than one run a week in winter, and head for 10,000m elevation – that one’s definitely a stretch.  Another post coming soon with goals for the year outside of these.