After running the Walt Disney World Marathon weekend and logging 42.4 total miles, I slacked off for six weeks. There was no excuse that holds water. I was simply lazy. I lost my mojo.
1/14 – 1/20: 8.08 miles
1/21 – 1/27: 1.74 (seriously? Why even bother mentioning it???)
1/28 – 2/3: 7.84 miles
2/4 – 2/10: 25.72 (finally – a week that I am not 100% embarrassed about)
2/11 – 2/17: 9.56 miles
2/18 – 2/24: 12.99 miles
2/25: 1.63 miles
3/1: 7.21 miles (now we’re talking)
3/2: 8.18 miles (HE’S BAAAAAAAAAAAAAAACK)
3/3: 3.4 miles (ran the Coogan’s 5k and paced at 9:26. I’ll take it…)
So – I’m falling behind and as of today, I need to run an average of 10k each day from now until the end of the year. That’s one full loop of Central Park. Oy.
But…there are signs that I’m beginning to come around. I just hope to build momentum.
As far as my diet is concerned, I have not improved. I am a rudderless ship. Portion size has decreased – so that’s a good thing. I hardly ever have soda any more – another good point. But my diet is not measured and dialed in the way I need it to be. And I have been way too lazy about it. I need something to kick me in the ass and get me lazer focused on what to do regarding calorie intake and proper food selection when I go out. I know this. BUT: this is ME we are talking about.
After a 2012 that I look back on now and call a decent success, I spent December 2012 thinking about new goals for the new year. Of course, the concept of “13 in ’13” doesn’t have the same ring to it as my “12 in ’12” did last year. Besides – you don’t do the same gag over and over again…you go on to the next gag. So I sat down with a notepad, a pen and bottle of cabernet and scribbled some ideas down. Now that I showed myself that I could take a sustained beating throughout a one-year period, I needed to harness that realization that I have a high threshhold for pain and actually use it as the driving force to become what I joke internally as The Man of Brass (hey: The Man of Steel is already taken, and Brass sounds a lot like Ass….so I thought that would fit appropriately). (And crap – that joke is no longer internal. I’m as sharp as a bowling ball.)
The first thing I wrote down was that, whatever the goals turn out to be, I would have to push myself well past the limits I hit last year. The goals need to be bigger. The goals need to be tougher. Even more challenging. These goals need to scare me.
The second thing I scribbled was that, whatever these goals are, my efforts need to go toward helping continue to raise money for The Dream Team Project. A quote from the movie King Arthur continues to echo in my head: “deeds in themselves are menaingless unless they are for some higher purpose”. Since my daughter is my motivation to continue to set the bar higher to show her that there is no limit to what a person can achieve when his/her efforts are focused and pure, I want to continue to help kids.
Once glass number two was poured, the creativity began to flow. Hmmmm…..let’s see…..The Man of Brass…..he needs to become a better all-around athlete. He needs to take his old goal of simply finishing a marathon before they start deconstructing the finish line and throw it out the window. But just how far can I push it in less than a year? It was then I decided: I am going sub 4 hours in 2013. To a man whose fastest marathon time is 4:59:36, shaving an hour off of my marathon time in less then 12 months might be more than I could handle. But then I realized: it your dreams don’t scare you, they are NOT BIG ENOUGH. So screw it. I am running a sub 4 hour marathon in 2013, and I want it to be the 2013 ING New York City Marathon. I can going to smoke the five boroughs.
In order to hit that big goal, the one thing I knew I needed to do was to drop weight. I am embarrassed to say just how much I weigh currently, but it is over 200 pounds. Let’s just say that if I were on The Biggest Loser and they weighed me on that sick scale, I’d cry like I did when the Rangers won the Cup….and those were some big boy tears. I get a free pass for welling up when Mess skated around the Garden with the Stanley Cup. But the type of tears I’m talking about wouldn’t warrant that form of free pass. At all. So I knew that getting my weight down big would translate into the speed I need to hit my sub 4 hour goal. Just saying that “I’ll lose some weight” is not a measurable goal. So I needed to put a number on it. What I decided was that I needed to get to the weight I rowed at in college, when my novice heavyweight four at Iona College went to the finals at Dad Vails. That number: 185 pounds. That’s my real fighting weight. And goal number two was born: drop to 185 in 2013.
That second goal sucks, by the way. I’m drinking a bottle of cabernet while coming up with these challenges. That says it all right there. But, I digress….
As I train for a sub four hour marathon and drop this weight, my speed should increase. One thing I’ve wanted to do was run a mile in less than 7 minutes. I’ve hit sub 7 for very short spurts. Anyone who’s read my prior race recaps or Dailymile post-run posts knows that whenever I have hit sub 7 and tried to hold it, I normally crash and burn extremely quick (or else I need to find the nearest garbage can and heave-ho). Well, without the weight holding me back I should be able to crack that 7 minute mark. By how much? Who knows. So that became goal number three: run the Fifth Avenue Mile in less than 7 minutes.
So that’s three goals. One that requires me to break out of this marathon rut that I’ve been in and shatter my PR (Personal Record) by one hour. Another that will require a complete lifestyle change (dropping the weight). A third that is a smaller goal that will prove to myself that I have a little speed in my legs. Now I needed a goal that I could use to focus me on a day-in, day-out basis. My answer: run 2,013 miles in 2013. Bingo. Ooooohh…that one is catchy.
That’s four. Maybe it was the Chateau Montelena but as the saying goes, “In vino veritas” (in wine there is truth)…and the wine told me I needed one more goal. One that pushes my endurance limit. It’s time to run past the marathon distance into Ultraland. An ultra event is any race that requires the participants to run further than 26.2 miles. Knowing how beat up a marathon makes me feel by the time the medal dangles from my neck, an ultra should really push my absolute limits as far as my ability to take a beating. I am
I wrote down my goals. Typed them up. Looked at them long and hard. And then published them. No going back.
The first hurdle of the new year: The Walt Disney World Marathon in early January……….
OK – I know I haven’t updated my blog in quite some time. So let me first give you a heads-up on what’s coming up this week. I’m going to share a review of the 2013 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend, where I ran a 5k on Friday, a half marathonon Saturday and a full marathon on Sunday (this act of lunacy is lovingly referred to as doing “The Dopey”). Since it is already March 2nd, I’ll provide you with a summary of my lack-luster efforts to this point. But first, let me share with you a new goal that I decided on at the end of January….
So my New Year’s resolutions were made official:
· Drop my weight to 185 pounds, in order to be able to take my running to the next level,
· Log more than 2,013 miles in 2013 in an attempt to prepare for quicker distance event times,
· Run the 2013 New York Road Runners Fifth Avenue Mile in under 7 minutes, and
· Run a marathon in four hours or less (hopefully the 2013 ING New York City Marathon).
An added goal for the year is to complete my first Ultra event. An Ultra event is any race that requires the runner to cover more than 26.2 miles. The first one I am gunning for is a race called Worth the Hurt. It begins the night before the 2013 San Francisco Marathon, where a number of runners begin at the course’s Finish line and run the course to the Marathon’s official starting line. The runners try to reach the Starting Line before the gun goes off on Marathon Sunday so that they can turn around and run the course again from Start to Finish. 52.4 miles. Is it really worth the hurt? If I can raise some money for the Dream Team Project by doing this, then my answer is yes. If for some reason I cannot score a spot in Worth the Hurt, I’ll run the New York Road Runners annual Knickerbocker 60k in the late fall – that’s a marathon plus an additional 10 miles plus. This one is easier than Worth the Hurt (because it’s shorter)– but it’s also very uneventful, as it consists of laps around Central Park….over and over and over again.
So let’s throw that up on the board, officially. Goal number 5 for 2013:
· Complete my first ultra.
As I continue to re-read the goals that I’ve set for myself, I realize that my ability to achieve all of them revolves around one main concept: dropping weight. Losing weight has never been my strongest suit. I like food way too much. Tasty food. Chocolate. Wine. Pasta. So my personal goals for 2013, in my humble opinion, will be MUCH more difficult to attain. But if I begin to drop weight, putting in an average of 5.5-6 miles a day will feel like less of an overall effort on a day-in, day-out basis. My speed will increase. I’ll have a shot at a sub 7 minute mile. I will be able to hold a sub 9 minute pace for longer periods of time in an effort to drop my marathon time to sub 4 hours. It all comes down to dropping my weight. And I have a LOT of weight to remove. But before I can develop my plan of attack, I have to dig in and find some damn self-control. Just say no to cookies. I need to say nay-nay to foods that I know are no good for me – which will result in saying adios to loaded burritos, zai jian to General Tso and his delicious chicken, and auf wiedersehen to WMD’s (Waffles of Massive Deliciousness).
At this point, in order to attain my goal of logging more than 2,013 miles this year I will need to book at least 43-44 miles a week. This is going to be rough.
It’s 31 days into the New Year…and I’ve gone a crappy job with regard to adjusting my diet to this point. I need to kick this into gear, ASAP.
If you’d like some information on The Dream Team Project or would like to make a donation to their amazing cause, please stop by the website: www.wdwradio.com/the-dream-team-project I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I really believe in what The Dream Team Project stands for. It raises money for the Make-a-Wish Foundation, helping to grant the wishes of children suffering from life-threatening illnesses. Being s former wish-granter for the NYC Chapter of the Make-a-Wish Foundation, I can tell you first-hand just how much of an impact this organization makes in the lives of children. Please consider donating to this worthy cause. Thanks!
…and if you’d like a bit more information on the WDW Radio Running Team, please check out the Facebook page at: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/WDW-Radio-Running-Team/163606410344409