Today is the day that I always look forward to- when I have all of my races planned out and my training schedule written down. Besides lacing up a new pair of shoes for the first time, is there any better feeling for a runner?
If you saw my weekly training recap on Monday, you might have noticed that I have "Gettysburg Marathon" as the title of my training. I decided to have a redemption race for the marathon that I never ran last year. There was a lot going on in my life at the time, and it just wasn't the right year for a marathon. 2017 is going to be that year and I will complete (at least) one marathon!
The Gettysburg Marathon is on April 23rd, which gives me a 20-week training period. Since this is a pretty long training schedule, I'm going to be breaking it up into different chunks with a tune-up race after each chunk.
First up will be the Chilly Cheeks 10 Miler in January. I've never done this race before, but it seems like a smaller race (last year there were 74 finishers). It looks like the race course is four laps of a 2.5 mile course, so it should be a great way to test my pacing!
In February, I'll be doing the Spring Thaw race at North Park. I did this race last year and finished the 15 miler. One thing that I really like about this race is that it has different distances available- 10, 15, and 20 miles- which you can decide on race day. This race is around the time I should be doing my first 20 miler, so if I'm feeling good on race day I'll do all 20 miles. If I'm having a bad day, I like the option of being able to stop after 10. Right now I'm planning on doing 15, but we'll see what happens! There are also pacers in this race, and I run on the race course pretty much weekly, so it will be another great opportunity to practice race pace and fueling.
Next up in March I'll be running a half marathon. I set my PR last year at the Shamrock Shuffle Half Marathon, and I'm trying to decide between that race again or another one in DC. I registered for the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler lottery but wasn't picked, so I'm hoping to do a different race in that area. Either way, if training goes as planned, I should be able to set a new PR with no problems.
Edit- this morning I registered for the Rock 'n' Roll DC Half Marathon! There's a HUGE sale today for all RNR Races in 2017..I was able to register for this race for almost half off! If you're thinking of running one of these races next year I would register today.
Finally, these all lead up to the Gettysburg Marathon! The course is completely different this year to run around the battlefields, so I'm looking forward to it. Looking at the route profile, it's a relatively flat course with some rolling hills throughout. It seems like a perfect marathon course!
There you have it- my race schedule for the first half of the year! I'm excited to be training for a full marathon, and these races fit in perfectly with my training to keep me on track. I'll be talking more about what training plans I'll be using along with some goals next week, but my number one priority is to get to the starting line of Gettysburg healthy and still loving running. I have time goals as well, but if that happens I'll consider this a success!
Have you figured out your race schedule yet?
What is your big goal for 2017?
Have you ever entered a race lottery? Were you successful?
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