Despite yesterday's disastrous mis-adventure getting a new pair of running shoes (see New Shoes, if you're curious), I had a spectacular time at Run Club and an even better conversation with my coach about more than just goals, but what we've learned from the 2011 race season.
I feel renewed and refreshed. I feel motivated. I feel like nothing was a waste in 2011: it was the season I became an athlete.
I feel like I'm setting realistic goals for 2012. There will be fine-tuning in technique and speed. There will be flashy running shoes. There may be Carbo Pro and Gu.
I even have a good plan for the 2012 post-season (that craptastic stretch of time from mid-August to December 25th: My Shit Show).
Beyond my coach and the friends I train with here in Chicago, I have a lovely support group in Central PA that will inspire me. Reaching out to a handful of them this morning via Facebook was a blessing: 750 miles away from me and we'll still share stories of our triumphs and of our missing toenails.
I feel grounded again. This physical / athletic stuff has never been how I identified myself, so doing so in my late-30's (gulp) is such a kick. I've missed the excitement of reaching new speeds and distances during my period of rest. I'm anxious to run tomorrow (although, 93% of that excitement is largely about wearing my new crazy shoes).
I have a feeling that 2012 will be a pretty, pretty good year.