While 2015 was all about an amazing year of races and goals and self growth, Looking back at 2016 was much more mellow. The whole year was around one big race rather than my usual sprinkling of races. Miss. FauxRunner made her racing debut – both in running and triathlon. And I took back seat as mom and coach. Since I voluntarily gave up on my season after April and the London Marathon and I took a long extended break, there are no “lessons learnt” or “What the future holds” etc at the end of this post.
“C/Fun” Races of the Year
My C/Fun races of the year were after my big race and I classified them such because it was just show up and go instead of training. Anything finish time that involved the finish line was a good time.
The Memorial Day 5k which is about 3 min drive from my house and I came away from it with this awesome photo. Win!
The PTS Allatoona Sprint Triathlon which I’d signed up a long long time ago and only showed up because Barry had signed up with me too.
Georgia Publix Half Marathon
All through winter I had slogged on soul stripping hill repeats. On the treadmill. Wouldn’t wish it on anyone. But it certainly paid off as I totally took on brutal hills and ran the last 5k of the race as my fastest of the race. While not a PR (I wasn’t running for a PR anyway), I came pretty close to it with an extremely strong finish and more importantly showed myself that I’m doing something right, even without a coach to push me! And I was certainly on track for the big race.
My big race of the year. My bucket list race. Could anything have been more perfect??!! It was the finishing lap of fundraising $5000+ for the Organization of Autism Research, the last of 2.5 years of constant focused racing, my dream destination. Even though my finish time was way way way off than what I had trained for, I have absolutely NO regrets about my training and my race day performance.
The Marathon is an experience like no other. It lifts you up, brings you down; fills you with joy, excitement and utter despair amongst the rollercoaster of emotions. It also humbles you on a very basic level and shows you what you are made of.
The fact that I was talking to people around me with a GoPro in hand did NOT mean that I was lollygagging the race. I was running it seriously, running it with a goal in mind. But this is ME. I’m always talking to people, always eager to hear their journeys. I want to remember a race for not only the experience I have with my training and my performance, but also the people who make it an experience. I know there are plenty of people amongst my friends and acquaintances who will scoff at that, but this is who I am and I know I’m richer for it.
And there you have it – a grand total of ONE major race earlier in the year and nothing after that. But there were many other experiences to make up for the loss of racing.
Hiking the Appalachian Approach Trail
“Because in the end, you won’t remember the time you spent working in the office or mowing your lawn. Climb that goddamn mountain.” – Jack Keroac
A small group of us started at Amicalola Falls Lodge, about 1.5-2hrs north of Atlanta and hiked up to the Len Foote Hike Inn on the Appalachian Approach Trail. The Inn is 4.8 miles each way and took us just under 3hrs each way. The actual A.T., as the Appalachian Trail is known, starts from Stringer Mountain, which would’ve added about another 3 miles each way.
5 @ 5 – Dark:00 Runs
Almost every Wednesday morning, I run with some crazy girls at 5am. Crazy because they are willing to meet me at 5am, and nice enough to go at my pace (and because they are ultra runners and have some wonderfully crazy adventures!). When I drive to our meeting spot, I see the morning sky and I’m always enthralled by it.
As I look at the nothingness that held everything, I always wonder …
What lies beyond Infinity?
Is it unexplored destinations?
Is it serenity?
Is it chaos?
What purpose do I have in this Infinite ever expansive universe?
Where is my place in all this?
We have logged so many dark miles, swapped so many stories and they’ve supported me so much in the crazy hours of the morning!
Miss. FauxRunner debuts
I might not have had any races after the London Marathon, but Miss. FauxRunner started off her triathlon career and her 5k running career with 2 races each.
She also ran her first official 5k in a race for an Indian Charity and came 2nd in her age group. She was thrilled beyond words!
While we took a few weekend trips nearby, our this was a big year for international travel.
The London Trip
We had a most wonderful 10 day trip to London, thanks to the London Marathon. I don’t know if I’ve fallen more in love with any city on my travels. London and its surroundings were all that I’d imagined and more. We spent quite a bit of time in London and only touched the touristy surface at Bath and Oxford. London and the rest of UK is on my definite list to go back and explore more.
The India Trip
We had yet another huge trip in October when we went to India for 3 weeks. It was my first time home in over 4 year and I absolutely loved it. And Miss. FauxRunner had a marvelous time eating all the awesome food!
So that’s my 2016 snapshot. Lot less racing focused and a lot more family TLC focused.
And oh – I had a major milestone birthday this September 🙂
How was your 2015?
The best, the worst, the milestones, the everydays?