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2013 Race Season: Pause for Reflection

Posted by David Hardy
David Hardy
VTR Expert
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on Saturday, December 28, 2013
in Training

The end of the year is naturally a time when most of us spend some time reflecting on the year almost past and the year to come. As we near the end of 2013 I have given a lot of thought to my race results and accomplishments in 2013 and my 2014 goals.

 

If you have read my blogs you know that I completed my dream of finishing the Ironman when I turned 40 in 2012. To be honest, since I completed that race I have not had the drive or motivation required to do anything impressive. Now that doesn’t mean I did nothing in 2013. Check out my race season below. 

February Hyannis Half Marathon Road Race 13.1 miles 1:43:32 361st overall Hyannis MA
March Freeze Your Buns Road Race 5 K 0:20:18 13th overall 3rd age Nashua NH
March Leprechaun Leap Road Race 5 K 0:20:56 6th overall 1st age Nashua NH
April Good Times Road Race 5 K 0:20:15 17th overall 7th age Lowell MA
April Good Times Road Race 5 K 0:20:19 18th overall 4th age Lowell MA
April Good Times Road Race 5 K 0:19:58 22nd overall 8th age Lowell MA
April Firefighters Road Race 5 K 0:20:12 12th overall 1st age Lowell MA
April Good Times Road Race 5 K 0:20:30 14th overall 5th age Lowell MA
April Good Times Road Race 5 K 0:19:58 10th overall 5th age Lowell MA
May Good Times Road Race 5 K 0:20:36 21st overall 4th age Lowell MA
May Good Times Road Race 5 K 0:19:54 19th overall 3rd age Lowell MA
May Good Times Road Race 5 K 0:19:37 14th overall 4th age Lowell MA
May Good Times Road Race 5 K 0:20:04 17th overall 5th age Lowell MA
June Good Times Road Race 5 K 0:20:23 25th overall 6th age Lowell MA
October New Hampshire Marathon Road Race 26.2 miles 4:11:59 80th overall Bristol NH
November Tyngsboro Trot Road Race 5 K 0:21:06 7th overall 3rd age Tyngsboro MA
November Wolf Hollow Half Marathon Road Race 13.1 miles 1:48:18 116th overall Nashua NH
November Thanks for Giving Road Race 5 K 0:21:17 27th overall 5th age Lowell MA

As you can see I did complete a couple of half marathons and the NH Marathon but was not close to my PR in any of them. I had a few decent 5ks in 2013 as well, but overall it was a very boring season and certainly nothing to get excited about.

As you reflect on the past season I think it is important to be honest with yourself. If you were unhappy with your results, what happened? If you truly want to have a better 2014 you need to know why 2013 went wrong. Ask yourself a few questions:

**How did the training go in 2013? Did you miss workouts or spend the required time training to meet your goals?

**Did you battle injuries?

**Did life throw obstacles in your way that prevented you from reaching your goals?  Kids?   Job?   Life Event?

**Maybe you completed the Ironman the year before and decided to play golf and hang out with your friends all year?     (oh, sorry that was my year)

Either way once you figure out what happened you can realistically look at 2014 and decide what will be different. Many of us get excited at the end of the year looking forward to a clean slate and the endless possibilities of the New Year. Being realistic about your life situation will help you make attainable goals for 2014. There is nothing worse than setting goals, signing up for races, and then realize on February 1st there is no way you will meet the goals you set the month before.

 

As I look forward to 2014 I have already made a few modest commitments. I will be returning to the triathlon world in 2014. My training partner and brother-in-law Mike wants to finish a half-Ironman in 2014 and I will be going along for the ride. We have committed to a duathlon in March and a triathlon in April as our first multi-sport events. I am always cautious about signing up for too many early season events due to limited outdoor training opportunities in New England. Look for a number of posts about our early season training progress as we start down the road of returning to triathlon.

In conclusion I am looking at 2013 as a bridge year….it may be a bridge to tremendous success in 2014 or it may turn out to be the bridge to nowhere. Either way I plan on challenging myself in 2014 by racing more often and entering more challenging events. Like a lot of people I am kicking around a few crazy ideas for 2014 but my veteran experience tells me to keep those ideas quiet until I have a few solid months of training under my belt. As you create your plan for next season don’t forget the most important thing….Have a good time and enjoy life! This is supposed to be fun!

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