It seems that the second you cross the finish line of a big goal, immediately the question “what’s next” starts to be asked. This time was no different.
I have gotten this question many, many times over the last 11 days and for once I really don’t have an answer.
Running 50 miles was my favorite thing I have done so far when it comes to running, but I haven’t had the overwhelming urge to hit register on another 50 miler like I did the second the second I finished my first marathon. I definitely want to do another one someday, but there are less to choose from (compared to marathons) and the training is really, really time consuming. I have my eye on a few, but I kind of want to wait and see where my heart takes me before I commit to something big like this again.
A number of people have been asking about a 100 miler. Yes I qualified for the 2013 Western States lottery and yes a 100 miler has crossed my mind many times, but I think something of that magnitude needs to be gone into with a lot more ultra-marathon experience than I have right now. I am not saying never, but that isn’t something I will be looking into seriously for a while.
I do have plans though!!
First, I have a 50k coming up in June that I am really, really excited for. I have loved every NorCal Ultra race I have run up in the Auburn area, so I know this one will be no different. I also have some section (if not the whole thing) of the San Francisco Marathon in July!
In addition to those races, I am constantly scanning through the local trail race schedules and have jotted down a number of trail races I want to run just because I want to run races in my favorite parks and discover new places to run around the Bay Area.
While training for AR50, I found that I truly love to run long and I want to keep that up. I want to build up my long runs to the 20s and just go run for hours because I love it… but not necessarily 2 days in a row like 50 mile training.
Most importantly, I want to spend as much time running and exploring in the hills and on the dirt as I possibly can. I want to take advantage of the long daylight hours of summer and just have fun. I really rediscovered my love for running this year. I want to make sure that I keep that love around and that I don’t end up where I was last summer, tired and burned out.
So that’s where I am at at the moment. This doesn’t mean I won’t find a 50 miler tomorrow and sign up, but for the time being, I am looking forward to running long, running trails, exploring, running a lot of fun races and enjoying the summer. I feel like I am looking at running with a new set of eyes this year, and I can’t wait to be really back out there again.