I had my last race of the season a few weeks ago. I always like to reflect on my performances when I know I am done for the year. Last year I wrote a blog post defining my 2012 season goals. Part of looking back on my season is to identify what goals I achieved and what goals I didn't achieve. I also want to plan my 2013 season races and goals based on my achievements in 2012. This is a brief recap of what I planned for 2012 and what I actually did:
- January - Arizona Marathon - goal was to PR with under 3:39
- Did not PR did 3:45
- February - Panama 70.3 - have a PR (personal record) for a half
- I didn't have a PR however I qualified for 70.3 World Championships which was even better than a PR and totally unexpected.
- April - Rage Half Ironman - goal was to have a really strong bike performance
- I beat my bike performance by almost 20 minutes over the previous year and beat my overall time by 15 minutes over the previous year. My run was slower than the previous year.
- May - Ironman Texas - goal was to PR. 2011 I had a PR here with 11:41
- I did not PR and finished 5 minutes slower than the previous year. There was significant wind on the second half of the bike course this year which we did not have last year. Although my time was faster on the bike even with the wind I worked much harder and had a slower run. My swim was considerably better over the previous year.
- June - Escape from Alcatraz - goal was to improve my time from 7 years ago
- While this is not a course I would ever be strong on its a fun race and a challenging one. I went into this race sick - I am not sure if that is why I was about 5 minutes slower but I also used a road bike rather than a tri bike which I used the first time I did it. I still want to tackle this one again. I am not done with Escape From Alcatraz!
- September - 70.3 World Championships.
- I did not expect to do this race when I planned my season but of course I went into this race with a finishing time goal. Living in Las Vegas enabled me to become very familiar with the course. I expected to do 5:30 for this course. I finished in 5:36 and was overall pleased with my performance. The weather was extremely hot and humid this day so being 6 minutes off of my time was OK with me in the end.
I need to focus on a few key areas going into next year:
- Improve my run off the bike - by pacing myself better on the bike I think I can improve my run off the bike. When I pace myself better on the bike I obviously have a better run.
- Pushing myself harder in the swim. I tend to be too lazy in the swim.
I love to run and like to swim and really don't enjoy biking. I am a strong cyclist and typically perform best on the bike. This is good and bad. I ride hard and I am a good runner but when I ride too hard I am just an OK runner. I need to ride more in the off season. I tend to gravitate to running and swimming.
Some good things to take from 2012:
- I improved my swim time in almost every race I did. I felt strong in the water and I think swimming with others rather than swimming alone throughout the year helped me push myself to a whole new level. As I said before I can be lazy in the water and just go through the motions but pushing myself has helped my performance.
- A few races where I paced myself on the bike I had a great run. My last race of the year I had a PR on my 10K run in an Olympic. I also got 2nd Overall Female.
- I performed pretty good in some really hot and humid races. I did 3 races with temperatures in high 90's and over 50% humidity. I did well in all of them. I didn't have any major disasters and all the races I did in the heat were Half or Full Ironman.
Next year I already have some goals and races planned!
- March - Escape from Alcatraz and 70.3 Puerto Rico
- April - Rage Half Ironman
- June - Ironman CDA
Of course I would love to qualify for 70.3 World Championships again. I live in Las Vegas and doing that race when you live here was an amazing experience. I would love to improve my time at Rage Half. I have done this course 2 other times so I want to keep getting better. I did Ironman CDA a few years back and did 12:25. I know I can do better than that but with this race the weather can be unpredictable. I have not come up with a goal for this race yet.
It is essential to plan your season and set goals for yourself. It is also important to reflect on your achievements. Pat yourself on your back for your wins and learn from your losses.