Thursday, December 29, 2011

2012 Race Schedule (Tentative)

2011 was the year of no racing. I seriously questioned my desire and even the necessity of racing - my thoughts and others were collected in a series of 7 posts titled "Why We Race?" If you haven't read the series, check it out - a virtual who's who of running bloggers weighed in with their personal thoughts! 

Apart from our hometown Bonfield Express 5K, which I ran with my son and his friend, this was a year that I supported my family instead. The kids once again participated in the Chicago Kids Triathlon, while Laima successfully completed her first Half Marathon in Oakbrook Terrace. Maybe because I was still involved in these races, I didn’t really feel like I was missing out too much. For 2012, however, I know I’ll be racing again, mostly on trails. Laima and I have already registered for a race mid-summer. We’re hoping that gives her enough time to fully recuperate from knee surgery and get fit enough to enjoy a half season of racing.

Following are three events I’m looking at for my triumphant return to competition. :)

April 29 Bear Trax 20K (Lapham Peak State Park, WI)

I haven’t registered yet, but I’ve heard good things about this races. The 20K is a mix of wide, well-groomed ski trails and the single-track Ice Age Trail. Not sure starting off my racing season with a 20K is the smartest idea, but if I want to be in shape for my ultra in the fall, there’s no reason to delay.

June 17 Warrior Dash (Channahon, IL) - CONFIRMED

Laima and I have signed up for 3.19 hellish miles that include firepoles, cargo nets, barbed wire, mud and other obstacles. Sounds like fun! I’ve wanted to try one of these adventure runs for a while, glad we finally signed up for one!

September 15-16 The North Face Endurance Challenge (Kettle Moraine State Park, WI)

I ran the 10K of this event several years ago and it has blossomed into an event that spans the weekend and has races of every distance from a kids’ run to 50 miles. Laima is planning on running a half marathon this weekend, while I will tackle my first ultra, a 50K. I’m hoping we can rent an RV and camp out for the weekend, hang out with Karno and do some family bonding. This is a definite maybe!

Apart from those, there is always a chance we’ll sign up for some other races. Laima is really keen on trying the Muddy Buddy, the Soldier Field 10 Miler would allow us to finish on the 50 yard line of a historic venue, and the Waterfall Extreme 10 is close to home and on a trail I really enjoy running.

The big thing is the ultra. There is no doubt that physically I’ll be ready, just not sure how I’ll hold up mentally. But I want to challenge myself and that's how I'm aiming to do it this year.

How are you stretching yourself this year?

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  1. Sounds like a great race schedule - love the definite maybe plans:)

  2. You've gotta do an ultra.... just to say at cocktail parties... "yep, I've done an ULTRA"

  3. Welcome back to the world of racing!

    Sign-up for the Ultra now so you have the goal in front of you. It is amazing how knowing the date is approaching makes starting those long runs easier!

  4. "...for my triumphant return to competition!

    Brilliant. I hope the press provides streaming coverage!

  5. I fell off the couch when I saw the post title. Good to see you back in the mix, dude.

    I agree with Jeff - sign up for the hardest one first and work towards it/schedule around it.

  6. That bear trax logo is enough to get me into that race.

    As Jeff and Patrick said get in on the hardest one and then work backwards for training and racing.

    Congrats on getting back into the racing world.

  7. The North Face Endurance Challenge is a fun and well organized event. I still need to pick a distance for 2012. Last year I camped there - Ottawa lake has nice facilities and is at the start line. Great mountain biking in the area also. There are also some events that take place there 4 Feb 2012 and 12 May 2012 if you want to check it out before the main event.

  8. I'd love to do that North Face Endurance Challenge race. Really, everything you have on your schedule looks awesome.

    My thinking was that this year would be less racing than last, but a large portion of what I did this past year was stuff that looked fun that just came up. I've been enjoying the process of pencilling in some question marks, but I think I'm about to sign up for a spring 50K. Heaven help me.

  9. Sounds like a great lineup. Especially the 50k! Go for it. And a 20k is pretty cool too--don't hear of that distance too often.

  10. warrior dash...... must do that one day. I hear they are awesome!!

    man / horse!! c'mon!

  11. That bear claw one looks awesome!
    ULTRA!! I am doing one in 2013.... My 2012 is booked! It sounds like you 2012 is going to be great!

  12. Happy Running and Racing 2012. Seems you are planning to have some serious fun.

  13. Welcome back to racing! I've heard good things about the warrior dash races. The ultra sounds like a great challenge (for you, not me) :-).

  14. That looks like a fun and challenging set of things to do in '12. I think my hubby is going to tackle the Warrior Dash this year. 2011 was my year of no racing as well, but I'm going to hit 2012 with a bang, and hopefully with one of every triathlon distance from Sprint to Ironman!

  15. Looks like great schedule with some interesting races. Look forward to hearing how you get on, especially the Ultra. Good luck with the training!

  16. Hope your Warrior Dash is better than mine was. Mine was in Dec 2011 and despite being an obstacle course that was "tough, grueling, and challenging", I somehow managed to finish it only 5 minutes slower than my 5k race pace. Which just means it was too freaking easy and to be honest, it was.


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