So I thought I'd put down a few thoughts on each of my races from the past year to formally "put it behind me", and get ready for my 2014 Schedule.
01.01 Baxter Trail New Years Trail Run (8M) 1:01:07, 1st Overall (71 finishers)
This was just a fun 13K trail race with pretty low competition. It was fun and I was happy to win it. It was a good way to start off the year.
02.23 Charlotte 10 Miler 1:01:00, 1/27 AG, 7/154 Overall Men
Basically a tune up race before Boston. I was pleased with my fitness level to average 6:10 per mile (short course) and with my ability to fight off people down the stretch. Gave me a lot of confidence.
04.15 Boston Marathon 3:16:32; 875/1,691 AG; 4,430/10,368 Overall Men
The pinnacle of running. The experience is everything that everyone talks about and more. I finally ran a marathon where I didn't crash and burn the last 10K. I easily beat my modest goal of 3:20 and had a great time.
05.18 Over the Mountain 2:22:19, 1/22 AG, 11/142 Overall Men
My first tri of the year went really well. Smashed my PR on the swim, 7th overall bike time and then hammered the first 3 miles of the run in 6:06's. I easily won my age group and almost cracked the top ten.
06.15 Slide Into Baxter Sprint 1:04:45, 1/70 Overall
The local sprint tri. I've done this race all 4 years of its existence, but this was the first time I won it. It was the first time I won any triathlon, so that was awesome!
07.04 Wawasee Flotilla Road Race (8M) 47:23, 1/? AG, 7/? OA
The annual Fourth of July road race at my parents summer place in Indiana. Small race, but was pretty happy with my run fitness to crank out 5:55's for the 8 miles.
08.04 Stumpy Creek 2:23:51, 2/38 AG, 15/208 OA
A bit of wake up call for my swimming ability, as I couldn't make up for my swim time. Still, I felt OK as I had an "off" day and still took 2nd in the AG.
09.08 Ironman 70.3 World Championships 5:06:30, 97/237 AG, 599/1372 OA
The "A" race did not go as planned. I picked a bad day to have a bad day as they say. It was still a great experience, and not just a "learning" one. But now, whenever I race a tough course or conditions, I can say that at least it wasn't as bad as Vegas.
10.13 Rev3 South Carolina 4:37:59, 3/45 AG, 17/277 OA
I finished up the season on a positive note, grabbing some 3rd place AG swag. This is a tough course, so I was glad to lay down a decent time.
Now that I look back on it I had a pretty good year. When your worst race of the year is your "A" race, it's a pretty big bummer. But now that I've had some time to think about it, I'm pretty happy with how it all went down. It helped quite a bit when I found out that I again was a USAT All-American. I wasn't ranked as high as 2012, but still you can't complain about being in the top 5% in the country in your age group. USAT now does state and regional rankings as well. It was kinda cool to see that I was ranked third in all of South Carolina in the Male 40-44 age group. I was 10th in my age group in the entire Southeast Region. It surely sounds impressive, whether it is or not.
So all in all it was a great year. I raced the Boston Marathon. I won my first overall at a triathlon (plus an overall win to start the year). I raced in the 70.3 World Championships and the USAT Long Course National Championships. And I made my first triathlon team! It is definitely something to build on for 2014 as I will do my first swim race, 3 halfs, and my first Full Ironman. Bring it ON!