"Happy New Year" from Alexis

Happy New Year!  Tis the season for resolutions, and as cheesy as it may be, there is very good reason for it.  A new year means a fresh start.  As of January 1st, none of us have missed a workout, we haven’t overindulged, and a fresh twelve months await, pregnant with possibility.  I have been busy putting together my race calendar for 2013, and I have an exciting schedule of running races and triathlons lined up.  Hand in hand with the race schedule comes the training schedule, and when I sat down with my coach to discuss our approach for this year, he dumped a proverbial bucket of cold water on my head.  I’m opening the year with 10 to 11 workouts per week, and while that was standard fare at one point last year, right now it just means the off-season is officially over.  I did not work out quite as much as I intended during November and December, that winter weights program never materialized, and I did not get in the pool four times a week (or even once a week at times).  I did, however, enjoy my honeymoon, my family, and the holidays, and I worked out enough to maintain an adequate base.  At this point I am celebrated out, and I am looking forward to getting back into a routine of sleep, working out, and working. 

Getting in a swim workout on Tristan's and my honeymoon in Bora Bora

As I jump back into a full workout schedule, I am facing the brutal reality that I cannot do what I could in September.  I am not at my peak fitness, and while I may want to run as fast and bike as hard as I did at the end of last season, at this point I would only be inviting injury and over fatiguing my body.  Instead, I am listening to my body and training within my current capabilities.  I have to remind myself that I am in better shape than I was last January, and that if I stick with my training schedule and stay healthy, I will have an even more successful season in 2013 than I did in 2012.  Staying healthy requires taking care of my body which, in addition to training, means increasing my time with my foam roller, stretching, and regularly visiting Natacha at PhilaMassages to keep everything in working order. 

In my very first post I laid out some of my personal race goals, and I intend to tackle them in 2013.  First up: get a Boston qualifying time at the GO! Marathon in St. Louis on April 7th.  That means running a sub 3:35 marathon (8:12/mile pace).  The last marathon I ran was the 2011 Philadelphia Marathon where I finished in a heartbreaking 3:38:34 and was hampered by an injury to my left knee.  By running the marathon, I exacerbated the injury to the point where I was unable to walk pain-free for 2 months after the race.  This time around I believe I have a better base and a more holistic approach to training, which I am hoping will keep me running smoothly.  I will continue to update this blog, hopefully with good news, and always with honesty.  May everyone have a successful, injury free, and fast 2013!