This blog is now retired. My new site is at: Predictably Irrational.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Running Calendar for 2009

I am trying to put together a running calendar for 2009. I know of three races I definitely want to do:

Coach Bubba's 20K on February 21st.
I am already signed up for this race. I have run this race for the past two years and I do really enjoy it. It runs through an old neighborhood in Durham and ends on the American Tobacco Trail, which is flat but very boring. But I like it and my PR on this particular course is 1:59:30 so I hope to do something a little faster.

Run for the Oaks 5K on March 14th.
This is like a Raleigh tradition for me. It is, to me, the launch of Spring's running season. A favorite although I wonder if the course will be altered due to all the construction that's been going on downtown. I have this course memorized. I made my PR on the course, and my overall 5K, last year with a 25:30. I wouldn't mind getting even closer to 25 minutes this year.

Neuse River Bridge Run 10K on October 17th.
Tim and I ran this race together this year and I really enjoyed it, despite how cold and rainy it was. It's a small town race and New Bern is a beautiful small town. This year, I would like for us to spend more time visiting the city. We just didn't get enough of it this past October.

And that's pretty much the "for sures" that I would like to do in 2009.

The other races I would like to plan for is a long race - 10 miles to a half - in the Spring and in the Winter. I am following $Bill's idea to avoid training so hard during Raleigh's hot, humid, intolerable heat that we call Summer. So I would like to find up to a half to do anytime between April and early June and another 'up-to-a-half' around late November to December.

And I'm not a big race person. I prefer something lower than 1000 people, if that's possible! And maybe more, but certainly, the City of Oaks was cutting close to being a little too big for my taste.

But because I am currently not interested in a full marathon, I prefer a race dedicated to a half, or 10 miler, but specific to that mileage. Running a half in a full is like taking the easy way out and takes away from the accolades that I want. :-)

There are a few I am eyeing, but I seem to find more and more interesting ones along the way.

Right now, the ones that have peaked my interest are:

Downhill@Dawn, which is in Black Mountain in June. This is a half *and* it's running DOWN a mountain. The one issue I have is that it appears to be religiously based. I don't know what that means - starting at a, um, a christian "campus", but the race sounds so darn good (they shuttle you back from the finish!!!) that I can forego the religious connotation. I have to do a little more research...I don't want a Hotel California thing happening: you can check in anytime you want but you can never leave!

Mountain Gobbler Halfis a half in the mountains that occurs the weekend before Thanksgiving. This is ideal as we usually spend Thanksgiving in the mountains so either we stay close to Hayesville (where this race takes place) or we head back to our Hilltop Hideaway.

But this race would be not for time but for endurance and completion. Again, knowing very little about it, this race apparently is not for the faint of heart. It's not like I like hills or running in the mountains, so it would be an entirely different type of challenge for me, me thinks.

And the last one in serious contention is the Mistletoe Half in Winston-Salem in, guess what? December. My friend Frank did this last year and another friend of mine has done this several times. She said it was a great race that is faster that City of Oaks (which I did pretty well in this year) and it's very family-oriented. Frank said they don't even use chips! Which is not really a turn-on for me since I like precision...but the idea of it being a smaller, family-oriented race is a bigger turn on. And the timing is perfect.

So I'll do some more research and see which ones I end up selecting. I don't want to fill up my calendar with too much but I do want to have some great races to train for.


  1. I like the sound of the Neuse River 10k. I think that's about as long of a run that i want to do. Maybe i'll strive to run that one next year.

    I checked out the Downhill@Dawn info. The place where it starts, Ridgecrest, is a retreat location slash conference center slash camp for grownups. They would *probably* let you leave after it was over. (-: That race certainly sounds interesting as it's all downhill.

  2. That's good to know about them letting me leave :-).

    But I read the race course more closely and this is appealing:

    You will experience some absolutely incredible views on this Downhill @ Dawn Half Marathon. The wooded mountains are majestic. You will pass some beautiful streams and rivers and The Old Geyser park.

    But this makes me uncomfortable:
    The entire experience will be a time for celebrating the greatness of our Creator God.

    And I read the race report (on the site) from the christianrunner and she goes on and on about the greatness of god...and the prayer before the start of the race.

    The race results do not show very many participants, so I'm concerned that the antichrist in me will be visible.

  3. You are wayyyyyyyy ahead of me in planning your race calendar for 2009....I wish I was so organized.

  4. Kevin: well, I wish I could take all the credit for being organized...but I can't...

    I actually have been NOT doing what I should be doing and my coach finally said "you should think about your 2009 races and goals to motivate yourself"...which is what influenced me to at least pick out three. I still need to find those two big ones...