Once again, it’s only January, and my racing calendar is already starting to fill itself up. After my disappointing (can finishing my first marathon really be disappointing though?) Naperville Marathon last fall, I am really looking forward to all of the races this year.
- F^3 Lake Half Marathon
- St. Paddy’s Day 5K
- Illinois Marathon
- Nancy Young Dolphin Dash
- Rock and Roll Half Marathon
- Late Summer/Early Fall Half Marathon
- Fall Marathon
- Noon Lions Turkey Trot
The F^3 Lake Half Marathon should be fun and exciting because who doesn’t like running along Chicago’s lakefront in January. I was spoiled last year when I ran in the Chicago Polar Dash Half Marathon because it was 50 degrees that day. I am not counting on that this year, but it still should be great. Plus, unlike the 10K I ran at Thanksgiving in Arizona, I will be fully recovered from my marathon. In fact, I am into week 5 of my current round of training. Also, since I was on vacation before the race in Arizona, my race week fueling was completely shot.
The St. Paddy’s 5K is a good time becauseI will be running it with my wife and some friends of ours. Hopefully, the weather will be a little bit better this year than last (in the 30s). It would certainly be great if it would possibly (fingers crossed) make it into even the 50s, so that the kids come too and stick around for the parade.
At this point, the Illinois Marathon is something I am really anticipating. With the way the Naperville Marathon turned out, I can’t wait for marathon #2. This will definitely be a redemption race. After putting in 18 weeks of training for last fall’s marathon, and running considerably slower than I am capable of (more on that later), I really can’t wait for a crack at #2. I will be more mentally prepared for it, and I am also going to have a much better game plan in place for the race itself. Although, I did think I had one for Naperville, it was not as thought out as it should have been, and it was certainly poorly executed.
Although I technically haven’t signed up for it yet since registration is not currently available, the Nancy Young Dolphin Dash is always a lot of fun. In fact, it might be my favorite race of the year because I sort of run it with my daughter. It is a 1 mile fun run and 5K for her school. She’s only in kindergarten this year, but it will be her 3rd 1 Mile fun run at Nancy Young. The weeks leading up to it have been great because of all the “training” that we do to prepare for it. She loves being able to pick out a “just right” running outfit. She also gets very excited to be able to run in the same race that I do, and I just eat it right up. What will really make for an interesting race is that it is only 2 weeks after the Illinois Marathon.
The Chicago Rock & Roll Half Marathon should also be great. I had signed up for it last year as well, but I had to take a did not start for it. I was still trying to recover from my calf issues that had been plaguing me since mid-April, and I was just not fit enough to run 13.1 miles and enjoy it. There was also the threat of my calves acting up, and who would want to try to finish running a race with burning pain in their calves? As long as I am able to remain healthy and keep my training consistent, it should be a great race. I will have two marathons under my belt, and I should be ramping up the training for the fall marathon (not sure which one yet) that I want to run.
There are a few races that I have not signed up for yet, and that will be a Late Summer/Early Fall Half Marathon and then a Fall Marathon. I am not sure which ones those will be yet. It all may depend on what happens with trying to register for Chicago since I have not run it before and would really like to do so. Though, with the enjoyable experience I had in Naperville, I just might do that one again or just try to find some other smaller event – perhaps even Milwaukee.
I will probably also run in the Naperville Turkey Trot 5K. Registration for that does not open up until May, and that may all hinge on the date of the Fall Marathon I end up running in.