Overall it hasn’t been a disaster but around February/March time, it didn’t look good!
January saw Janathon and over 120 running miles. And a bit of damage to my foot that I simply ran through before having a poor February trying to work out why it felt broken and a rubbish March with no running miles while I rested to try and repair it. Cycling took on a bigger role as the months went by, though, so overall fitness remained reasonable.
April saw a week off and the opportunity to see someone about the foot. A temporary shoe insert helped recovery and this, combined with a week of cycling everywhere, saw monthly mileage go beyond 300 for combined activities…suddenly my 2011 mile challenge looked beatable, instead of growing ever larger as a weekly target in front of me.
May saw a return to normality with cycles to work increasing along with running confidence. A fresh pair of shoes (Adidas…never thought I’d wear a pair of these for running!) brought all sorts of advances in running. Never have a pair of feet been so revitalised as by a simple, well advised purchase.
June saw Juneathon. Two races, several million cycles to work (or so it felt in the rain and wind) and 699 overall miles, including my targetted 50 running miles as a return to normal.
July saw my first ever 5k race (on July 1st, so not entirely rested after the cycling and last day of June run) as well as a recovery into normal cycling and enjoying the summer. And it all went downhill from there, really! Mileage decreased but joy increased as both running and cycling became less something I “must” do and became things that I simply had fun doing again. As far as the weather went, it being a cooler than normal summer suited me fine. And so things progressed through August.
September saw me bemoaning the imminent loss of my hilly country lane for repeat sessions, and through the autumn (while the temperatures returned to April levels) I continued to hunt for enjoyable runs around Rye. Still haven’t found any, but alternative hilly routes at least exist to keep fitness levels up.
November was a dull month of repetition; December has ended at a whimper. Lows have been a cold knocking me back as I tried to rest to lose it before my trip to Paris; highs definitely the run through Paris to the Arc de Triomphe. The last week has seen a couple of short jogs and a few short cycles. Nothing to excite in any way but to simply get out and maintain activity through a Christmas of decoration and floor laying.
And so to Janathon 2012 and some 2012 goals.
Injury free is the main aim. I’ll try to run through Janathon and Juneathon this year. A target of 3 decent runs per week surrounded by single mile outings should see mileage sensible at around 75 total, I think. A cycle each weekend will keep me honest, too, I hope. Nothing epic but something to make the legs remember they’re for more than plodding is the plan.
Instead of a total mileage challenge (2011 saw the 2011 mile challenge beaten with a comfortable margin, even if the figures don’t look epic-I didn’t count many cycle rides after October, so totals dropped as the challenge end came into view), I’m going for a quality challenge this year. Several goals make it up.
General exercise (either weights, press-ups and sit-ups etc, use of the rowing machine) made a resurgence towards then end of this year and I feel better for it. To this end, I’m targetting 150 runs (over 1 mile to allow some slacking with the Jan and June runs all counting, but to be realistic and allow rest after a few planned races as well as a couple of down weeks with colds and the like). 100 “general exercise” sessions, be they weights or combinations of press-ups, rows, sit-ups, chin-ups or whatever co-ordinated into a 20 minute or more pulse raising activity. 50 cycles of 5 miles or more (to exclude commutes to the station and back unless they include a detour, even if it is on the BMX, but to allow two cycles from a commute to work – 16 miles each way counts! Also to exclude simple outings to buy a paper unless a detour is included in the route). That should give me about 60 days off through the year which will be increased with a few multi-task days reducing the burden.
The plan is a stronger, fitter man with some time to enjoy working in the garden but also the ability to take on a challenge or two without wilting at the prospect. Races will be an opportunity to see how well I’ve done as a rounded “athlete” rather than to destroy myself in the pursuit of pb’s.
Happy new year.
And let Janathon commence.