Now that the Ragnar Race has ended and I've taken a nice break, it's about time for me to think about what's ahead. On Sunday, I went out for a run because it was World Running Day, and ran 8.19 miles in 1:01:16, a 7:28 min/mile pace, which was pretty decent. Since then, I've been busy unpacking my things because I was moving from my place in Cedar Bluff to the east side of Knoxville. Over here, there's a lot of places I haven't run, so as soon as I'm done unpacking and making my room livable, I'll get out and explore. Due to my sister borrowing a car, I've had a hard time doing anything around here, but it'll all end when I start running around and getting acclimated to the surrounding area. My roommate told me that it'd be dangerous to run around at night, so I'll have to refrain from that from now on, but it'll be good to run around during the day while my break lasts.
As for the next goal, I've chosen the Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon as one that I would like to train for. This time, instead of getting first place in my age group, my goal is to beat everyone running the race. After running the Ragnar, I saw that I could run pretty fast without exercising and training for it, so now with my new found confidence, I feel that I could take myself to the next level and train to run a sub 6 minute per mile for the whole marathon. It's going to be a lot of work, but it's not going to be impossible. I think it'll be rather exciting. I don't know how I'm going to train for it this time... but for now, I'm going to build a good foundation of miles run in order to prepare for the training program that I'll specifically design for me.
On a side note, I signed up for the Western States 100 and I really do hope that I get to be one of the lucky ones that gets drawn to go. Since I've qualified for it, I am eligible to sign up for it (which I did) and out of everyone that signs up for it, only 10% of the people gets to be chosen through the lottery. It sounds like a long shot, but I figure 10% is better than 0% so I'm going for it. I know that if I get chosen, I'll have to work hard to get in good enough shape to run that 100 miles and compete with a field of elite runners and others that have qualified. Should that happen, my marathon training will still be in effect, but I would also add a lot of other long runs. I've already prepared myself for running the Frozen Sasquatch 50k on January 5th, so I'll see where I stand with that (it's only about 5 miles more than a marathon so it shouldn't be a big deal) but maybe I'll have to find a 50 miler or something to run soon after the Knoxville Marathon, if I get lucky and get chosen to run the WS100... oh life is so fun when you're going from race to race. We'll see how it goes... Hey, I might just do the Smoky Mountain Relay and see if I could do an ultra leg or something... should be fun. We'll see how everything falls into place when December 8th rolls around... by then, they'll have announced the chosen people for the WS100 and I'll know whether or not my life is going to be drastically different... or just about the same.
The next goal does drive you forward, and without that goal, you kind of stagnate. Find that goal and you will thrive.