With barely a week left in '09, I guess it is my time to reflect back on the year that was.
In all honesty, '09 was a year with some major up and downs for me. The year started off with ITB in my right knee which dropped me out of the Shamrock Marathon, March saw the judge finally sign off on my divorce (never a fun experience), and then late October my mother passed away after a long illness. To say the least, my life has been struggle at times.
But there have definitely have been some bright spots.
I met this new group of runners that call themselves the Charlotte Running Club and they breathed some new life into our running community. This was something that is much needed across charlotte and probably something that I needed as well.
On the racing, you sometimes get a few chances to win a race or two. But this year, I actually won some championships. I won the RRCA 5k NC Championship in the spring at Beach Blast and the USATF-NC and RRCA-NC Marathon Master's Championship in the fall at OBX. I count myself lucky for being in the right place at the right time. Isn't that what life is all about.
A special note about OBX, I was hoping for a better time, but I am a survivor and on that day it was all about surviving.
Good thing I had a better marathon in the spring when I ran 2:39 in a late spring marathon called "Run the Red" in Pennsylvania.
Then there were the 5k races where I dipped under 17 minutes in two 5k races in the fall. I have not been under 17 minutes in 2 years.
For most people, this might just be enough but I am not one that likes set idle for very long.
During the summer I picked up a new road bike and started riding on a regular basis.
Took my first trip to Lowes Motor Speedway for a time Trial in July and by September had lowered my 10 mile split to 24:52. And while I enjoyed the time trials, I was also riding for distance. I pushed my longest ride to 70 miles.
Keeping all of this training moving was constant challenge and to make it even more stressful, I was in a tight battle with Steve Spada in the RFYL GP series. For the last 2 years, the 2 of us have battle race in race out and never being more than a few seconds apart.
Steve's a touch competitor and he pushed me to work harder.
At the end of the year I did in '09 were to run the USATF Club XC Championship. I never ran XC in high school or college so sprinting across an open field on with a huge group of middle age runners was not something even on my todo list. But there I was on a cold field in the middle of December sprinting through the grass, breathing harder than I do in any road race, and getting covered up in mud. It was quite an experience.
So for the year, I did 2 marathons, 3 – 10k, 1 – 15k, 2 – 4 mi., and a bunch of 5k races – totally 22 races in all. More or less, the number of races that I did was on par with previous years. And, it was down a little from the '07 when I did something like 38 races.
A long the way, there were times when I was so tired that I wondered why I do it. But there were other times, when I really enjoyed the moment and knew exactly why I push myself even when I didn't have to do it.
With my thoughts