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The Great Running Experiment of 2014

Alright, friends. 2013 is almost in the bag, and it was a good one as far as running goes. I ran my first half marathon, set a couple of PRs for other distances, and completed a summer run streak (at least a mile for 81 straight days). When it’s all said and done, I think I’m going to fall short of my mileage goal for the year by about 50 miles, but that still puts my total for the year at about +150 over 2012’s numbers.

In life outside of running, 2013 has been a good one as well. I started grad school in the summer, in order to finally get the education degree I rebelled so strongly against in college. My wife and I added another little one to the fold, so if you’re counting at home, that brings the total for kiddos to 2. Both of these life changes were contributing factors to my mileage slipping off in the second half of the year, but I wouldn’t change a thing.

As I look ahead to 2014, I am trying to come up with some solid goals of running in the next year. The Tallahassee Half is already paid for, so that’s happening for sure in February. I’m excited for the race, but I’m not going out there to try and set a PR. My training has not been as regimented as it was last year at this time (see above). I will probably try to run a couple of other races around Tallahassee through the spring, and we’ll see where things go from there.

So there’s a mileage goal to be set, obviously. For 2013, I wanted to get 600 miles run, and I’m going to come up just shy. I’ll have to sit down with the numbers from this year and come up with a goal in the next couple of weeks. I’ll post it here once I’ve made a decision.

As I was putting away clothes in my closet this evening (super exciting, I know), I realized that I have a crap-ton of running shoes. My wife has known this for quite some time, but I have been in the throes of denial. In addition to the shoes, I have a crap-ton of other running gear- shorts, socks, pants, tights, gloves, hats, etc., etc. Some of this stuff is not even appropriate for the climate in this region, but I’ve got it, just in case Tallahassee gets a freak blizzard. Nothing’s going to keep me from getting out there.

So here’s the thing. Let’s call it the Great Running Experiment of 2014. I am going to try to make it through all of 2014 without spending money on running gear. It’s killing me to think that the shoes I’ve got are the shoes I’ve got for the next year, but after looking at the numbers (and yes, I keep meticulous records of the mileage and use for every pair of shoes in my little Imelda Marcos stockpile), I should have no problem covering the miles I am thinking I might run in 2014. I’m not calling this a goal, more of an experiment. We’ll see where it goes. I will be buying essentials (Body Glide, specifically) in order to get through the year, but I’m going to try my darnedest not to make any major purchases.

And so, all 12 loyal blog followers, I want you to be prepared for this to be my place of accountability. Think you can handle that? It might not be pretty. I’m a gear head when it comes to running stuff, so this will be coming as a major change. Feel free to post comments of support, send gift cards (that’s not cheating, right?), or take whatever steps you see fit to help me in this endeavor. Here’s to hoping I can make it at least until February…

What are your goals for 2014, running or otherwise?

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