Wednesday, December 31, 2008


What are my triaspirational goals for 2009? Hmmm....

Continue to become a better and faster runner.

Become a considerably better swimmer, including integrating flip turns into my regular daily swimming!

25+ run miles/week; 10,000 swim yards/week.

Become a calmer and more confident and road-worthy cyclist. (I am hoping that the NYCC's C-SIG course will help in this regard - also, of course, it would be helpful if I would ever actually ride my bike!)

Find a core and/or strength-training routine or class that works for me (yoga or pilates would fall into this category), and do it at least twice a week.

Do the same two triathlons I did last year, and improve my times in both (that will not be hard, especially for the Florida race!).

Take some minutes off my marathon time in New York in November (I did 4:17 in Philadelphia, on what is a slightly easier course - sub-4:10 might be a good goal?), and finish the Antarctica marathon in March feeling cheerful and strong!

Stop eating cake and ice-cream as often as I have done in the last three months! (Or else start running 40 miles/week on a very consistent basis...)

Enjoy myself training and racing, that is the most important one...

It makes training make sense to have some serious goal races, but I think I like it better when I stay more flexible about what other racing I'll do - the half-marathon Grand Prix is a fantastic notion (five half-marathons over the calendar year, one in each of the five boroughs of New York!) but in fact caused me some grief (I enjoyed the Bronx race very much, but I was coming down with a cold when I ran the Manhattan one ,and the Brooklyn one, due to rescheduling, took place only two weeks before the Florida 70.3, which was inconvenient for all sorts of reasons), and I had to give up after the first three when that hamstring injury in September made it clear that running the Queens race that weekend would be distinctly inadvisable. They don't announce the dates for the races especially far in advance, so if you travel quite a bit and have some other races to work around it can turn out to be a considerable source of stress.

And I would like to do more open-water races, but they are very weather-dependent, so there is no point feeling disappointed when they do not happen!

I do not feel it was a year in which I made any great improvements, but I think that has to do with the nature of retrospection rather than true lack of progress.

I was far less nutritionally responsible in 2008 than in 2007, but on the other hand the mental-health costs of being very obsessive and stringent on the food front seem to me to outweigh that eating style's benefits to physical health. I wish it were easy for me to weigh about 15 pounds less than I do right now, but that is not the body type I have, and the honest fact of the matter is that almost every female of my acquaintance who is not incredibly thin privately believes that she should weigh 10-15 pounds less than she does - and if her weight drops, the notional ideal weight drops with it!

I do know that I made considerable progress on a number of counts (I did my first triathlon and my first marathon, I found a real team to swim with!), even if there is nothing so dramatic and striking as there was in the fall of 2007 (namely, a half-marathon PR of 1:54, learning to swim butterfly and having the adult swimmer's amazing pleasure of learning for the first time what it feels like to swim a real honest-to-god 100 IM!).

I have particularly enjoyed the camaraderie of training with friends real-life and virtual, including readers here who comment and e-mail - thanks in particular to my lovely New York running partners, to various family members who supported me during the Philadelphia marathon, to the coaches and trainers and teachers who made things fun and (last but definitely not least!) to Wendy and Brent for incredibly generous and high-quality advice and support in these endeavors (and indeed in life in general)!

Happy New Year! Here's to a great year of triaspirationality, in whatever forms it takes - really it does not have to involve triathlon, it is just a question of learning and yearning and stretching and striving to do things that you would not have thought possible...


Laura said...

I know I rarely comment, but I'm always reading, and just wanted to say happy new year :)

Leah said...

Happy new year! I've enjoyed reading all about your training this year and think your goals for next year sound quite reasonable and admirable. Btw, I did the Chesapeake Bay 1-mile OW swim last year and it's a good race. There's also some smaller OW races later in the summer here in PA. Might be worth checking out... and they're less prone to hurricane-induced cancellation!

Wendy said...

Enjoyment is definitely key -- and the year ahead holds so much promise!

Flip turns are fun! (Really.) But probably the most fun of all? YakTrax & PENGUINS!

Happy New Year, Jenny.

Dorothy W. said...

It sounds to me like you had a great 2008 and have some good goals for the upcoming year. They sound very reasonable and do-able!

ShirleyPerly said...

Wonderful to hear you'll be doing FL 70.3 again so I can hopefully meet you in person (I won't be doing the race but think I'll be in Orlando that weekend). Good luck with all your goals!