Saturday, November 12, 2011

Decisions, decisions

I think I am finally all caught up on life, sleep, work, etc. It has been a crazy week since we got home but our trip to New York was well, well worth it!

Josh is out of town this weekend as he and his friend that he coaches with used our 15 passenger van to drive a bunch of kids (including our 13 year old, Ryan) to the Nike Cross Country Invitational meet in Boise, Idaho. A couple of my kids have little colds, so the rest of us are all just hanging out in comfy clothes and having a restful weekend. Right now we are all laying down in the front room watching "Princess and the Frog".

It took a couple of days, but I finally shook that "hit by a train" feeling. Long hours of travel, a tough race, walking all over NY city, and all the work involved in getting ready to go out of town and catching up once I get home, had me at a new level of tired. I am still feeling a little more tired than usual, but my body feels pretty dang good though now and I have been running every day, nice and easy.

As I have been resting and recovering as much as possible, I also have been researching, reading, and planning.  Here are some things I have been working on -

- A coach? I have been thinking about getting a running coach. I feel like I have a lot of progress I can still make in my running and I'd like to reach my full potential, whatever that is. (I know I am never going to be an elite runner or anything like that, yet I do enjoy being competitive and want to be as fast as I can). I love running, I love racing, and I want to push myself and be my best. Do I need a coach to do that? Would a coach help me?

I don't feel that I need a coach to hold me accountable or motivate me, as I am pretty dang motivated and expect more out of myself than anyone else will.  But I do think that a coach could help me make a training plan, adjust it as needed, and make the most out of my miles and training.  I would like having someone to ask questions to and get advice and guidance from, especially someone with lots of marathon experience.

On the flip side, I think I have done a good job so far educating myself and training myself... pushing myself, pulling back when necessary, listening to my body, adjusting training plans to fit my needs, building my mileage, increasing my speed, etc.

And then of course there is the issue of cost. Being honest, we don't have much extra money. At all. And it's hard justifying spending money on myself that isn't necessary. 

So could a coach help me? Significantly? Can I reach my full potential on my own? Is the benefit worth the expense? Hmmmm... any thoughts? I'd love some input!

- I have been reading "Advanced Marathoning" by Pete Pfitzinger and Scott Douglas and I am thoroughly enjoying it. I love all the science behind the training. I have read lots of books on running and training and this is at the top of my list. Right now if I don't use a coach, I do think I will go with one of the Pfitz training plans for Boston.

- Races! I am also trying to come up with a "race plan" for next year. I have had several people tell me now that if I want to run my fastest and be as competitive as I can in the marathon that I need to run fewer marathons. I do have a pretty good schedule so far I think. As of now for 2012 I have planned -
January - Goofy Challenge in Disney World
May - local 5K
June - Ragnar Wasatch Back as part of an ultra team (will run about 30 miles in 3 runs in 24 hours)
July - Star Valley Half Marathon, another local 5K
September - Top of Utah Marathon (leaning towards this one over Pocatello right now)
November - NYC again? It was an amazing experience, my family is there, I'd love to run it again, Josh would love to go again, and I would love to stay connected and involved with Team MEB and run for them again. If not NYC I would love another race in November/December that involves a weekend away together for Josh and I.

That would be four marathons in the year and some shorter races, which sounds pretty good to me.

That's all for now! Hope you all are enjoying your Saturday.


Tina @GottaRunNow said...

Kind of a hard decision, but if you don't want to pay the $, it looks like you're doing a great job on your own. And 2012 looks like it's going to be fun!

Penny said...

I think you are doing a great job on your on with your training.

What a great plan for 2012.

Terzah said...

I would love to get a coach too, but the same thing ($$$) is stopping me. I agree with Penny--I don't think you should worry if you decide you don't want to pay for it. You are doing really well on your own! And I can't wait to hear about the Goofy Challenge.

misszippy said...

I'll be interested to see what you come up with on the coaching decision!

It makes me laugh that four marathons is "cutting back" for you! That's four years worth for me!

{lifeasa}RunningMom said...

I am so with you on the coach....I would LOVE, LOVE, LOVE one but the $$$$'s are holding me back. I am sure I would love the experience and gain so much from it but I just can't justify it just because is is money spent just on me.....

BabyWeightMyFatAss said...

I would love a coach to but i think you can do great things on your own. Actually when I saw coach I thought to myself well Erin should just get her coaching certificate! (that's what they do right? lol) Because I think you would be great at it!

fancy nancy said...

I've always tossed around the idea of getting a coach to see what I can really do. Maybe when I do another marathon! This sounds like a great year...I love that 4 marathons is cutting back for you! You're amazing!!

Cynthia said...

Hard decision about the coaching. Maybe you can save up money for the year and get one for 2013, then you can choose a racing schedule from there.

I want to run the Goofy Challenge in 2013!

Have you ran Pocatello? It's on my list for next year but not 100% on it.

There's always Vegas RnR Marathon in December (I'm doing the half this year but thinking about the full for next year) There is also a small race in Washington State on new years eve, this will be their second year. It's the Yukon Do It Marthon in Port Orchard, WA, you guys could make a trip to Seattle :)

Jen said...

Okay I have to comment here because I am doing the Disney Half in Jan with my Dad. I would love to have the opportunity to meet you - even for just 5 minutes! Maybe we can have a plan to run into each other before the start line or even at the expo. Anyway, would be super-cool for me - I'm a big fan :)

Samantha said...

Private coaching isn't your only option. I belong to a USTAF affliated running club - we have weekly group track workouts that are coached by a woman who competed internationaly. The workouts are tough, build over time to a goal and are very different from anything I've found on my onw. We also do regular weekend long runs. She is a great source of advice and support. The best part - the annual membership is only $20!

Natalie R. said...

Erin--Firstly, the Seattle Marathon is always the Sunday after Thanksgiving, you & Josh always have a place to stay :).

Secondly, I have been attending a running class, pay as you go type of thing, and it has really helped me with my form and with different strength exercises in a class setting. The coach has explained terms I wasn't familiar with and really looked at my running on the treadmill, outside on pavement, on a single-track trai, etc. I have loved it and I only go when I have the $. I also second what Samantha said--look for a running club, we have several here in Western, WA!