Goals. I've spent a lot of time the last six months or so reflecting on this last decade of my life as I head into my 30's and thinking about what I have accomplished and what I want to accomplish. (With a lot of that reflection landing on running...this post has been rolling around in my head for months now. Literally.) There are days that I still sit back humbled and amazed that I've completed two half marathons because in reality I never thought I could do it. I've learned a lot and realized there is so much that I want to accomplish when it comes to running in my 30's.
In my late 20's I started running on and off depending on lots of various factors. I've done well considering I've been trying to learn a sport that was foreign to me and trying to be mom to two small kids. My focus for my 30's is to dream big and really work on improving my times. Up till now my goal has been to attempt and finish without any care to my time. I simply wanted to be able to say that I did it. For my 30's I want to say not only did I finish but I finished well. That I improved over previous performances. I want to become more dedicated to this sport that I love and hate all at the same time some days. This winter I will attempt my last two race weekends with the mindset of I just want to finish. Starting in August we'll have both kids in school all day and my ability to train will change dramatically. Andy and I will actually have the opportunity to run together! That never happens. I'm pretty excited about the possibility of being able to train together but also being able to run during the day while the kids are in school. Even better I'll be able to drop both kids off in the morning and then run on campus at Berry.
My running bucket list includes being able to say I have a medal from every major runDisney race. Which is no small feat and will take some serious time, planning, coordinating of schedules, and training BUT I feel it's completely doable. Within that Andy and I have several runDisney goals that we'd like to complete before our 10th Wedding Anniversary in 2016. So, here we go:
--Complete the Goofy Challenge...this means you run both a half marathon and a marathon on the same weekend. (Half on Saturday with the full on Sunday.) You are awarded three medals for this accomplishment...both medals for the individual races and a third medal signifying you did both races back to back. We are slated to run this in January and my goal is just to finish. I could care less about my time. Again, my ability to train and train well will improve later in 2014.
--Complete an Inaugural runDisney race...I'm slated to do this in February by running both the new Enchanted 10K and the Glass Slipper Challenge. (More about the Glass Slipper Challenge here.) This particular event weekend I'll be running with Andy's sister, Caroline. Considering that I will hopefully have completed a half and a marathon a mere five weeks earlier my goal again is to just finish. Since I've completed a half I'm really not worried about doing the 10K and half back to back for this weekend...unlike some days when I think I have completely lost my mind to attempt a full and a half back to back.
--Run a Disney race with my dear friend, Evan. We both have a deep love for racing in the parks and it's a goal of ours to actually race together as opposed to being at an event that we both happen to be running. We've talked about possibilities for the future and have a few ideas. I'm quite confident we'll complete this before we both turn 40. Right, Evan?!?! :) Maybe the Pink Coast to Coast Challenge? I'd love it if our friend, Erin, would join us for whatever we end up running.
--If Andy and I survive the Goofy this winter our goal for the winter of 2015 is to do the Dopey. (Completing a 5K, 10K, half, and full over four days with 6 medals to your name if you do!) We are tentatively planning on this with the goal of really evaluating this after we run Goofy.
--Coast to Coast/Dumbo Double Dare...runDisney has a highly coveted medal, the Coast to Coast, that they award if you run in events on BOTH coasts (DisneyLand and Disney World) in the same calendar year. Coast to Coast is tricky for us due to having season football tickets with UGA. The Disneyland Half Marathon is always Labor Day Weekend. This year they added a 10K and created a new challenge, Dumbo Double Dare, if you complete the half and 10K. Next year UGA will play Clemson at home Labor Day Weekend and so we will be in Athens. Which is fine...there are a few things I want to happen before we do Coast to Coast. I want to really be in a running groove in order to train ALL summer for a half. (Right now I much prefer winter running.) If we are going to fly all that way I want to be able to compete and compete well. I don't want to just 'finish'...I want a good time. Next I really want to know the parks before I run out there. Part of the reason I love running at Disney World is I know and love all the places I'm running. I constantly have memories running around in my head about past trips and experiences. Ideally, I'd love for us to take a family vacation out there and really explore the parks. Plus, I want us to take advantage of enjoying Carsland while AG is still in to Cars. The earliest we could attempt this will be 2015 giving us plenty of time to work on all of these things before heading west to run.
--Food and Wine Half Marathon...this is a night race and is done in early November. Due to when it is run we have to try and schedule it around football. It is possible that we might be able to attempt it in 2014. If they keep it the same weekend that it is currently scheduled then next year UGA will have an away game. Lots of moving factors with this one and we aren't planning on it yet...just keeping it in the back of our minds.
--Tower of Terror 10 Miler...currently this race is scheduled for the first weekend in October. I have a feeling this will probably be the last runDisney event we check off our list due to the date. The first weekend in October is always Berry's homecoming weekend, Mount Day Weekend, and we never miss it. As it is, next year UGA has a home game that weekend. Plus, it'll require training all summer for it and again, I have yet to get in to running in the summer.
--Ideally, Andy and I would love to complete a marathon to start our 30s. (We'll both be 30 in January before Andy turns 31 in February.) And we'd like to complete Dopey and Coast to Coast before our 10th wedding anniversary. Those are our three major race goals between now and 2016 to do together. I'm not sure if we'll tackle them all but I'm really looking forward to the challenge and the possibility of it all. Grateful that two years ago I took the plunge and decided to take up running because it has completely changed my perspective on so many things.