I need big goals. I train at my best when working to push my limits. Examples of when I got my training right, worked very and had life on track have always been when working towards significant targets. The main one's that come to mind are:
- 1st marathon
- 1st Ironman triathlon
- 1st sub-3hr marathon
There have been others. For my big goals to work, I also need a genuine desire to achieve that goal. It has to be more than just doing something a bit better or faster than before. It has be more than just going somewhat faster. An element of fear has to be there. That fear may simply be the fear of failure, or it can be as big as wondering if I can even complete the race. So far it has always come from initial throw away thoughts that spark a little further interest. At some point I follow up that interest and it develops into almost a need to pursue the next challenge.
At the moment triathlon doesn't fuel my passion. Running does. I want to go back and run a faster marathon. I want to see if I can really run under 2:50. The mistakes of this year's marathon training have been established, and I am sure I have a reasonable template to set a new PR. However, just doing that isn't likely to get me under 2:50. So at the moment I need something else to help.
That something else is the ultramarathon. Over the last year, my interested has been growing, and I feel I have a need to have a go at racing beyond the marathon. It will certainly put me in the territory of a significant target. The seed had been sowed some time ago, but the ultimate fertiliser was the Salomon Trail Run in Kew. I love training on trails, and seem to race relatively well on rougher terrain.
Where to now?
First up, I like the concept of a 50km ultramarathon trail run. Something that is more than running an extra 8km (give or take). So the Maroondah Dam Trail Run 50km has caught my attention. This will be at the end of next February, and to be truly ready might be a big ask if I don't sort out a few issues, but it the type of challenge I am looking for. Beyond this, there is also the a Championship series being offered next year, that I am considering participating in. My mind isn't made up yet. I need to see if I can really get everything on track in time for the first race. Then see if I can really recover and repeat. From there, I'll take a fresh look at the marathon.