Races I'm committed to
My key races for the spring are Umstead 100M and Miwok 100K, Miwok being more important to me. If I
tried to run it at my current fitness level, I would certainly time out. The same is true for Umstead, but with Miwok's lottery, travel costs, and stunning course, I'd really like to complete it on the first attempt. Needless to say, I'll have to focus heavily on preparation.
My "fun" races are the Hook Mountain Half Marathon and the Three-Days at the Fair 48-hour. I'm running the Hook because it's a fun race and a lot of my coworkers do it with me. It also happens to be the half-marathon where I have my PR - even with its tough course. Right now I don't plan on running it hard, but who knows. 3Days is an opportunity for me to just have a relaxing stress-free run at an excellent course. I may upgrade to the 72-hour option on that race; haven't decided yet.
NJ Ultra Festival is also a "fun" race for me, but because of a major work project that is occurring that weekend, my participation in it has become uncertain. I will certainly do my best to be there, but may have to show up late and just do the 50K instead of the 50M, especially since Umstead will be two weeks later. One thing about NJUF is that a lot of my friends will be there, and I'd hate to miss out on the party.
My "means-to-an-end" races are the Manhattan Half Marathon and the Gridiron 4M. These races will be the first two of nine that I'll use for guaranteed entry into the NYC marathon in 2012. More will be added, but most are not all that interesting due to their short lengths.
Races I'm thinking about
The are other races I may do, of course. Caumsett 50K on March 6th is on my mind since I've run it the last two years. Like last year, I am not planning on doing it. However, in 2010, the day before, the race, I thought, "I need a long run and this is a good way to do it." So I registered on race day. I suspect that if I do it 2011, the circumstances will be similar - but right now I'm leaning against it.
One thing I'm all but certain is Pineland Farms 50M in Maine on Memorial Day weekend. Here's a race that I've been sorely tempted to do in the last two years but haven't been able due to church obligations. Those obligations won't apply in 2011, so I'm pretty sure I'll do that race. It's going to be an amazingly fun race.
After May, I don't know. I would love to throw my hat over the fence and register for Cascade Crest 100M in Washington State, which is on August 27-28. However, it's way too early to know if I'll be ready for it because it's one of the more difficult 100-milers in the USA. Plus, it's an expensive proposition. I wish I had more time to think about it, but registration is in Mid-February and expected to close quickly.
I'm in the lottery for NYC marathon 2011 again; we'll see.
I've already said I'll enter the lottery for Across the Years again, but only for the 72.
There's a bug in me that wants to register for the Honolulu Marathon on December 11, but that's probably a pipe dream. More likely but still not even close to certain is a return to my first marathon in Las Vegas, which is now part of the Rock'n'roll series marathons.
Hell, when it comes down to it, there are a bunch of Marathons I'd like to do. Flying Pig, Grandmas, Chicago, Marine Corps, & Rt. 66 come to mind. But it's hard for me to justify so much travel and expense just for a 26.2 mile marathon. I'd have to attach it to some sort of vacation to make it worthwhile..
There are a bunch of local races I'll probably do just because they're so close. I've done Self-Transcendence Marathon three times and will probably be back for a fourth time (although Cascade Crest, starting two days later, would negate that idea.) And there's always Rick and his family who do the NJ Trail Series with a ton of races right in my backyard all the time. I love his races and will probably sign up for a few as they come. In fact, two of the races I'm doing this spring are his.
But at the end of the day, my decisions about what happen in the second half of the year depend entirely on what the first half of the year looks like. This is why I'm so apprehensive about Cascade Crest.. Basically, I ought to get proficient in trig (IE Umstead, Miwok) before trying out calculus (CC100). Unfortunately, by the time I do either of those races, CC100 registration will be closed out.
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