I normally take a look back at the first half of the year but the main focus of the first 5 months was the Series and I'm waiting for the August issue of the magazine with its report before I do my final wrap up so for now lets look forward.
As you may have read at the beginning of the year my only real plan after completing the series is to get back into strong marathon shape again for the first time in years since all the injuries began about 4 years ago. Just recently I have finished planning out my race calendar for the remainder of 2018. Beyond that I have no plans right now and a lot will depend on how well these next 6 months turn out.
Ok, to begin with , my first step in the plan is already a bust. I am signed up for Grandfather Mountain Marathon but I'm in no way ready to even think about it with my longest run of the year at 13 miles last weekend, not counting the half marathon in March. I could probably finish a long slow run walk but it would just be a beat down and I need to be building right now, not tearing down. So I'll just be training for now for the upcoming races on the schedule.
Here's the long and eagerly awaited plan.
August 26th: the New England Green River Marathon.
This is a point to point starting in Vermont and ending in Massachusetts on a gorgeous rural course. It is a Boston Qualifier and it will take a miracle for me to get in shape to get the time needed but I'm going to give it my best shot to get ready. Even if I don't it will be a good building block to get a qualifier for the 2020 Boston. ( The qualifying period for the 2019 Boston ends mid Sept.).
September 8th. Not set in stone just yet but I may return to Goldsboro for the TitanUP 5k again. Small low key event in the old hometown where I easily won my age group last year.
September 29th. The Virginia 10 Miler. This is a big target race for me. Two years ago I placed 4th in my age group. I have always had a fantasy of a podium finish in this classic and tough event but to do so I'll have to have a very strong effort. Which means the real hill training starts NOW !
October 6th. Another maybe depending on how I feel at the last minute is the Selma Railroad Run 5k. super flat and fast course and I haven't been in several years. If Lynchburg doesn't beat me up too much I may give it a shot.
October 20th. The Ironclad Half Marathon in Kinston. I've had my eye on this one for a few years. Peer pressure from some MTC friends made me pull the trigger on entering this one. A good test and hopefully a podium finish. No time prediction for this one.
November 4th. City of Oaks Half Marathon. In years past this one has never had much appeal to me but, not because I didn't think it was a good event . Mainly because I have raced in Raleigh so many times over the years and trained so many miles over most of the course I preferred going somewhere else with so many options available this time of year. But I decided this was the year to go for it and take a shot at winning my age group. I won the 10k last year and maybe if I run as well this year in the longer race I can win again.
December 15th. Jacksonville Marathon (Fl). If I do get the BQ in August then I'll go all out and try and improve my time. If I don't then I will probably run this a bit more cautiously just to get the BQ and then go for a faster time later. The weather is usually conducive to fast running on this flat course and I've heard nothing but good things about the race. I need to run about 3:51 to guarantee entry into Boston and I feel confident I can do that barring any unforeseen circumstances over the next few months.
That's it for now. Stay Tuned and wish me luck !