Monday, December 10, 2012

Goals set and goals met

It's the end of the year again. It's time to kick back with a glass of whatever you're drinking while you ruminate on where all that time went. And for you ambitious, endorphin-driven types (don't deceive yourself - if you're a runner and if your vocabulary includes races, paces and PRs, you are most certainly one of those), it's time to evaluate your results against the goals you set for the year, and set new ones.

2012 has been an unbelievable year of running for me...the kind that I could only dream of in the past. I started the year off with the modest goal of staying injury-free. No marathons, no BQs... simply keeping myself out of injury zone. After a frustrating 2 months, I decided that monthly, even weekly plans don't work for me. I needed a daily plan. Go out for a run, and if something didn't feel right, STOP. Body sense, strength train, eat right (alcohol and chocolate are healthy, no?). It served me well. I was able to improve over the course of the year and eventually work up to a weekly plan, with speedwork and long runs thrown into the mix. I went for the shorter distances. 5K to half marathon. And despite workouts much harder than I've ever done in the past, managed to stay healthy, improve incrementally, and set goals and PRs year-round. I'm learning when to push hard and when to back down. I've made mistakes and will continue to make them. But each mistake makes me just a teeny bit wiser (I hope).

I have to thank the incredible people who have supported me. 'The best running club in NJ' - RVRR with its strong, tough, talented runners has been my biggest motivation. My running buddies who are also my dearest friends and the best cheerleaders a girl can ever ask for. My Chi running instructor David Stretanski ( who took away my fear of injury and made running seem so effortless. My physical therapist Craig Schendlinger who pounds every knot out of every inch of my body whenever I need it (his signature elbow in butt maneuver can bring a grown man to tears. Runners flock to him like flies to honey...he is a miracle worker). Dr. Jordn Metzl and his Iron Strength workout...he promised to turn me into an animal and I think he really meant it. My ever-patient, amazingly supportive husband. My father's spirit in me, nudging me on every run, every race, every time I'm tempted to bail in the middle of a grueling plyometric workout.

I'm learning to go with the flow, to let my body dictate my goals and to have fun with running. While I had to give up my dream of a BQ, the USATF-NJ Grand Prix championship was within reach. Second place woman in 2012...while that only means the faster, stronger women in the state that I am in awe of were ineligible because they didn't compete in enough races during the course of the year...I feel gratified when I look back at the journey, filled with disappointment, frustration and finally redemption.

Goals for 2013? Still the same...stay injury-free, eat healthy, enjoy running. And be grateful everyday, for the wonderful running community I'm lucky to be a part of.     


Bilki said...

Kavitha,What a Great year so far... All t best for your Goals set for t next year.Need to admit that im fortunate to have such a prolific writer as my batchmate.All t best for days ahead!

Beth said...

Congrats on a great year! Sounds like you have a great support team in place which makes all the difference. Enjoy every run!

Mahesha Chayapathi said...

Wow. Great year. Very inspiring to read your achievements. Good luck for 2013.

Mahesha Chayapathi said...

Thanks to RVRR news letter, I had the pleasure of reading some of your awesome blogs. Very inspiring to read your 2012 race reports. Wish you to have even bigger 2013. All the best.

I Run for Fun said...

Thanks, Mahesha. All the best to you as well!