I confess: I’ve been planning my 2017 running calendar for the last six months or so. Yes, I know that means 2016 wasn’t even half over before thoughts were focused on the new year and the future. This is nothing new for me, though. I am a planner; I enjoy researching, anticipating, looking forward to things. So while I had an amazing fall schedule of running in 2016 that was still staring me in the face, part of my heart already belonged to 2017 and all the other new, amazing, wonderful adventures, fantastic people I will meet and the races I will run.
Some may consider this a shame that I wasn’t solely focused on the year at hand, as 2016 was a pretty great year for me in so many ways. In terms of running, I have been fortunate enough to:
- qualify for the Marathon Maniacs by running my third marathon in a 90 day period (January 2016 in Louisiana)
- attain a marathon PR in Louisiana of 4:15 (January)
- attain a new marathon PR in Dusseldorf of 4:05 (April) – which is still my PR to this day
- reach Silver level in Marathon Maniacs by running eight marathons in a 365 day period
- travel to Germany, France, Chicago and several other places to run
- win a lottery placement for the Berlin Marathon in 2017, the first marathon lottery I have entered
- run marathons in back to back weekends
While I’m still basking in these accomplishments, I am also excited about 2017 and the possibilities the new year will hold. So here is what my running calendar looks like (so far!):
January: Bermuda Marathon
March: Chattanooga Marathon
April: Paris Marathon
May: Ogden Marathon
June: Bay of Fundy Marathon
September: Berlin Marathon
November: Richmond Marathon
December: Cayman Islands Half Marathon
As you can see, this is a total of seven marathons. One of my goals for 2017 is to get four stars with the Marathon Maniacs, moving me to Iridium level, which I should get after Berlin for running nine marathons in nine different countries/states in a 365-day period. I’m also eager to find a race in October and would love to hear suggestions. I’m also toying with running Tulsa Route 66 Marathon a second time the week before Thanksgiving, as it would be my first as a Maniac (and they treat Maniacs really well!) and a chance to visit some very dear friends again. Sometimes, it’s the possibilities that are overwhelming; the choices are just too many. I find myself second guessing if I have planned it out the best way possible, chosen the best races for me and will want to continue running marathons a year from now. When the dates creep closer and I find myself on the doorstep of my next race, I have been able to find a great comfort in simply lining up and doing what I have trained for: running 26.2 miles.
In truth, I’m not sure how long I will continue pursuing this distance, but for now, I love it and plan to keep finding new places to explore and enjoy on foot. Twenty-six point two miles at a time.
PS. I already have Houston on the books for January 2018. I am a planner.
What races are on your 2017 calendar? Do you have any suggestions for an October marathon? The choices are almost endless and I’d appreciate any thoughts on which race/s to consider!