When you end your racing year by DNFing at a race that you spent all year working up towards, it puts a bit of a damper on things and makes it tough to look back at your year in a positive way. Time to look back some of the positive running things that I accomplished this year!
April: I squeaked out a 50K PR (and set a decent sized course PR) at Chippewa, to continue my year and a half streak of running a PR every ultra:
June: I ran my fastest Grandma's ever despite some nasty heat and it not being my main goal so I went in with just a mini-taper. Sure, this was partially due to my streak of awful Grandma's that I've finally started to break but I was smart enough to stop and use my inhaler on the course and when the I hit my wall, I didn't crash and burn nearly as bad as I usually do at Grandma's. I finished with a rocking good last mile, too. My final time was eight minutes off a BQ, but I was still quite happy since that hadn't really been expected.
July: So. Much. Adventure!! Our Montana trip brought some good solo runs along with a fabulous run with Leslie and Rudy in Glacier National Park that was the most beautiful run I've even been on and included a glacier overlook.
I ran two races while in Montana and while my 50 mile did not go at all how I wanted (I took a wrong turn and had to drop down to the 50K but still had to redo a loop in order to do an extra out/back section so ended up with 42 miles total), it was still pretty and a good long run. The second race was a brutal, brutal 20 miler that I've been trying to get into for a couple years - The Bridger Ridge Run. I had a blast and while my quads were toast by the end from the crazy steep descending, my legs held up great for a being week after a full of elevation change 42 miler.
August: I legit outright won my first race ever (first overall as opposed to being the first woman) and had to beat Jarrow to do it! A lovely little 7K local race, mostly on the SHT, to support my friend running for the House. A nice little boost of confidence and fun heading into Wasatch.
September: A couple weeks after Wasatch, I finally got down to the In Yan Teopa 10 miler and took third woman on tired legs. Mostly due to the part where I passed person after person once we hit the glorious technical single track in the last couple of miles.
And that's not even counting all the amazing runs I had with my awesome friends and Cedar the Trail Dog this year, just adventuring in our own back yard.
I also hired a coach this year and while he ended up being perhaps not the best fit for me, he still did a lot of great things for me throughout the year. I got back to lifting on a regular schedule and starting doing actual speed work for the first time in years. He definitely helped increase my base pace and reminded me how good intervals and thresholds feel.
This fall, I also finally bought a fat bike after drooling over them for a couple years. I severly sprained my ankle (I was on crutches for four days afterward) and so discovered mountain biked and from there knew it was time for a fat bike. I've been having a lot of fun playing on the trails in a new way and it's making my legs stronger even as I've eased off of running for a couple months of mental and physical break from specific training.
So this WAS a good year and that's what I've gotten better at remembering. I'm unsure of what my goals are for next year (So many options! I want to run all the races and go all the places!) but I look to be solidifying some of them ASAP (considering how one entry fee increases in less than two hours). A happy 2017 to you all - may the new year bring you as much Adventure as you're seeking!