1,100+ miles and 2014 goals

 Last year I ran 201 times with an average distance of 5.4 miles each time. I ran a total of 1,103.05 miles over 183+ hours and burned more than 110,000 calories (from just running). I also ran in four different countries – United States (over a handful of states), Turks & Caicos, United Kingdom, and France (it’d be really cool if Nikeplus can keep count of this for me). I completed three full marathons, two half marathons, and nine other races ranging from 5Ks to a 10-miler. You can say I had a full year of running (at least for me, it’s relative of course).

Around 1,100 miles (that’s 2.2 million steps running, average is around 2,000 steps per mile running) is the distance from New York to Central Florida, where my in-laws live (I could have run in that if I had a year!), New York to Minneapolis, Minnesota, 37 trips to my parents’ house in Central Jersey, and if you could drive (or run) to Bermuda, I’d be there as well (it’s less than 800 miles away). 183 hours (10,980 minutes) is over 7.5 days. Man when you calculate it out to days, it really doesn’t sound as impressive. However, 183 hours means I could fly to Bora Bora over eight times or roughly 3,660 songs that I would have listened to on my playlist, and way too many other things I could have done had I not been running (please don’t remind Josh of this!).

When 2013 started none of these were goals of mine, the only goal was to break 1,000 miles in the year and run the NYC Marathon. However, while trying to accomplish these goals, I’ve had the chance to grow and learn more about myself. Prior to all this running years ago, I wished for the time and opportunity to find a hobby outside of work. I tried many different things from yoga, random volunteer projects, reading, and more. Nothing stuck with me until I started running with the Alzheimer’s Association. Running, exercising, and overall health consciousness has become more than just a hobby, it is a way of life and I’ve met some lifelong friends along the way.

When 2014 started I hadn’t really spent much time thinking about resolutions or goals. However, when I commuted to work the first day in the new year, I promised myself I would try to not let things stress me out as much. Sure, I was thinking specifically of work but also personally. Last year, I didn’t finish a half marathon because of a number of factors but stress and anxiety leading up to the race was a big proponent. I spent weeks leading up the race freaking out (really couldn’t think of a better word!) about breaking my goal time, pacing, and fueling. I cannot let that happen again. For most of May and June last year, I was in a running funk. The thought of lacing up my shoes was not fun and even though it’s arguably one of the best times of year to run, I didn’t want to. By June last year, I had already completed two full and two half marathons. All I was doing in the first six months of 2013 was training, racing, training, and more racing. I was eating, sleeping, running all on a training schedule, no wonder I was in a funk.

In 2014, there a number of running and exercise related goals I have my sights on:

  • Build a stronger core
  • Tone my arms (in fact, I am about to purchase two SPRI Soft Mini Xerballs!)
  • Try new activities that I think I might like – Crossfit, trapezing, rowing and spend more time on ones I like – rock climbing and bouldering, go to more spin classes
  • More swim lessons? (I really need to figure out this whole breathing thing)
  • Run a couple of half-marathons (no real goal on how many, just whenever I feel like it. My first one this year is in a couple of weeks.)
  • Run in at least one marathon (maybe in May? Will I use my guaranteed entry for the 2014 NYC Marathon? I guess I have to decide by March 18th.)
  • More importantly though, regardless of the race, I will run for fun, and for me (not for time, with that hopefully those PRs will rake in)
I am also contemplating different ways to build on my passion for health and exercise — coaching certification, nutrition classes, volunteering in this space? Any recommendations or thoughts would be greatly appreciated!
What are your 2014 goals?

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