2020 Targets – A Step too far?

I have had a couple of fallow years as far as running and fitness are concerned. I keep trying to get back into it but the motivation hasn’t been there . Excuses are easy to come by when the motivation’s not there.

So to kick off the new year I’m setting myself three main fitness objectives from now . I don’t generally like New Years resolutions which tend to be ‘broken’ but targets I can manage. I will also start today (28th December) as I have never seen the point in waiting!

  • Five Million Steps: Works out at an average of 13699 each day, every day. I’m currently averaging around 10k so this would be quite a stretch.
  • 12 Half Marathons: will focus on completion rather than time. Focussing on beating my PB each time I go out is one of the things that has stopped me running in the past
  • 1000 miles run in the year: Guess this is a bit of an ‘easy’ one in that if I do the other two this should just complete itself

I’ll look to put up a monthly update on here to track progress to keep me honest!

My Running Year

I was never much of a runner. When I was puffing around the football field, I would run 3 miles or so in an attempt to get fit. After my neck injury, I started off the year barely able to run a 5k. I definitely would have never tried a race or a park run. This year has changed everything 

Go Hard or Go Home

(Image © TattyDon)
Having started running to combat the worst period of depression I’ve had (See…Why I Run) I got addicted! I ran my first half (since I was 17 years old) in March  and my fifth in December picking up a PB of 1.35.54 on the way. I achieved 18th position in a 10k (Cattle Creep) and completed the Silverstone Duathlon series. At the start of the year I set myself a target of running 100km a month which seemed unachievable at that point. I changed that to 100 miles per month by the end of January and have only missed out on completing that in the last month. Injury having forced me to retire December’s effort at 73 miles. Added to that, I am fitter than I’ve been since I was a kid. I have lost 2.5 stone in the last eighteen months and finally look in the mirror and don’t feel negative. 

I really appreciate the support everyone has given me. My regular ‘race support crew’ and Redway Runners. You guys have been great in terms of motivation, support and advice. I have made loads of friends through the club and some really close ones.  The ten mile run on a Friday means that I can roll up at any Half now and just do it. No training needed. That’s a quite incredible step forward for me. Finally, finding a twitter group in #ukrunchat has linked me to some incredible people. Supportive and inspirational runners, most of whom I will probably never meet.  Thanks guys!

Looking forward to next year, the injury that has resulted in me missing out on my main target this year has made me reassess target setting a bit. Hopefully it’s a small one but makes me realise that four week based targets require a great deal of luck. 

To have got so near this year and yet miss out takes away from what I have achieved personally. If I had sat down on January 1st and looked at the stats above, I wouldn’t have believed them. I thrive on targets though and so I’ll set them down although this year I will be flexible about reassessing them if I need to. My main one for next year, of completing my first marathon (targeting sub 3:45) is probably the best example of that. I’m already aware that Im missing the training for that so need to reassess when I’m fit. Beyond that, my broad targets are to spend the first four months focussing on the Marathon, the next four focussing on Duathlons and possibly a Triathlon (quite a stretch as I can’t really swim at the moment…) The last four months is about running for fun! 

Without running I’m not sure where I would have ended up this year. With running, I have become stronger, more confident and believe in myself more than I have done for years. 

Performance Against Targets 2014

1 Log 5 million (fitbit) steps by the end of the year: 

  • With one day to go, 5.8m steps. 

2 Run 2014 km in 2014:

  • 2197 km completed  (1365 miles)
3 Run 100m every month:
  • Missed it in the last month (103,103,108,118,115,124,140,122,111,136,102,73). Average Mileage per month though was 114

4 Do Three Half Marathons: 

  • Five Half Marathons completed (1:41.57, 1:41.34, 1:35.54, 1:37.42, 1:42)

5 Do a sub 2 hour Half Marathon: 

  • All five sub 1:43. PB of 1:35.54 

6 Complete a Duathlon: 

  • Silverstone Series completed (3 races) 

Specific targets for 2015 

1 Log 6 million (fitbit) steps by the end of the year

2 Run 2015 km in 2015

3 Run a sub 1:30 Half

4 Run my first Marathon

5 Run a sub 3:45 Marathon

6 Place Top Ten in a 10k

7 Complete 3 Duathlons and 1 Triathlon