My Year in Running: 2014

yearinrunning2014

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.

I know, I know. It sounds pretty dramatic and I may be overexaggerating a bit. But when I look back at my races and running experiences in 2014, it was an up and down year.

There were certainly the highs: hanging with the Runner’s World gang and meeting Shalane Flanagan, competing in two races (10K and 5K) in the same morning, finishing two half marathons in two weeks, getting a new half marathon PR, spending a fun weekend in Falmouth with some of my favorite running bloggers (and pals) at the ZOOMA Cape Cod half marathon.

And then there were the lows: nagging injuries (piriformis, second toe on my left foot), a boneheaded decision to run in brand new sneakers in a half marathon, and the fact that I didn’t really break any of the running ceilings I had set out for myself (sub-25 5K, sub-2 hour half marathon … both of which I missed by mere seconds).

But I think the most important thing about my year in running is that it helped me come to some important thoughts and decisions about 2015, which I’ll share soon. It’s all about learning and growing, right?

Anyway, in keeping with tradition (check my previous year-end wrap-ups: 2012 and 2013), here are some more thoughts and observations from 2014:

Races participated in: 10

Distances:

5K: 5

10K: 1 (which I admit I found pretty surprising … only 1 10K? I wonder if that was a result of all my half training)

10-miler: 1

Half marathon: 3

New-to-me distances: 10-miler

Hottest race: Nothing stands out like last year’s Falmouth Road Race … there’s a reason I didn’t race in August this year :)

Coldest race:  Flippin’ Fun Turkey Trot .. a trail run in the snow. Need I say more?

States run in: Massachuetts, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, Connecticut

Participation medals received: 5

PRs: Boston’s Run to Remember Half Marathon. Although I missed my sub-2:00 goal by less than 30 seconds, I shaved more than three minutes off my previous 13.1 time! Also, since the 10 mile distance was new to me, I guess that makes it an automatic PR too, right? I also set a few new course PRs along the way, too.

Best Race Experience: While I’m tempted to go with Boston’s Run to Remember, I think the true answer here is the Newport 10-Miler. I don’t think I’ve ever felt as strong or confident running a race, and the gorgeous, ocean views certainly didn’t hurt! There was nothing but pride (and pure joy) when I crossed the finish line having run a 8:47 min/mile pace for 10 miles! I really want to run this race again next year but, unfortunately, they moved the date from April to June … right on Mimi’s 4th birthday. Sigh.

Most Fun Race Experience: Definitely a tie here: Runner’s World Heartbreak Hill Half & Festival and ZOOMA Cape Cod 

ZOOMA Cape Cod ambassadors

Hanging with my ZOOMA Ambassadors

Best New Piece of Gear: I can’t pinpoint one specific item, but I’ve loved anything I’ve purchased from Athleta!

Proudest Running Moment #1: My performance at the Newport 10-Miler

Proudest Running Moment #2: Being asked to join Runner’s World at their inaugural Heartbreak Hill Half & Festival, where I got to hang out for a weekend with so many of the running bloggers I have followed and admired over the years AND got to meet both Shalane Flanagan and Sarah Reinertsen.

Shalane

 

How would you recap your year in running? Did you accomplish your goals? Surprise yourself at all?