2020 was an epic year of unknowns. Despite the unexpected nature of the year, I was able to not only continue running, but I also improved my performance. I will admit that I hate chaos or disruptions in my life. While I cannot expect perfection, I tend to cling to normal or as normal as I can when things are happening that are beyond my control. 2020 was no different in trying to continue to live a "normal" life even when every day was unpredictable. This is how my year worked out.
Jan-March 13, 2020
I started 2020 with excitement since it was my last year of my thirties. I choose "Adventure" as my word of the year in celebration. While 2020 wasn't the adventure I hoped for, I made the best of my situation. In the beginning of the year Atlanta hosted the Olympic Trials for the Marathon during the Atlanta Publix Marathon Weekend. I was blessed to serve as a course monitor for race. It was so amazing to witness the event and watch the racing greats run toward the finish line. The volunteer swag was an extra bonus too.
The beginning of the year also brought what would be my last in person races until December. I paced the Hot Chocolate ATL race in great weather, which was a miracle. I also paced the Publix Half Marathon for the first time. Both races were great and honestly looking back if I had known what was yet to come I would have hung out my running buddies just a little longer.
March14-Dec 31, 2020
The COVID-19 quarantine started the week before my school's spring break. Initially, I snacked and waited for whatever was yet to come. The last week of March I decided to sign up a Garmin virtual 10k plan. The purpose of the plan was to run, which was allowed me to clear my head, alleviate stress, and improve my fitness.
While I have an active running life, my eating habits have been my Achilles heel. Since you can't outrun a bad diet, I haven't run at peak performance in awhile. The training plan was an opportunity to examine my running life and diet. I was working at home full time on my own schedule, so lack of time and college junk food (#collegeprofessorlife) were not barriers. I also completed a few virtual races which added extra motivation for training. I am proud to say that I didn't miss any session unless it was weather related.
I completed the 10k plan just in time for the Atlanta Track Club Virtual Peachtree Road Race training program. I served a run lead for the program and mentored a group of participants. I also attended weekly Zoom educational sessions on topics such as hydration, injury prevention, and nutrition. To keep traditional alive, I ran my own personal Peachtree Road Race on July 4.
For summer and fall I signed up for the Garmin virtual half marathon training program to continue running and improving. The mixture of strides, easy runs, and progression runs increased my endurance and I lost a few pounds. Since all, but one of my fall races were converted to a virtual race the training was used to complete those races.
To sum it all up, I made the best of 2020. The lack of in person races and training programs actually freed up time for me to work on my own fitness. I also ran virtual races for in person events that I would have never been able to attend. My mileage for the year was 510.8 miles. My hope is 2021 will be better in all aspects and I will continue to train and invest in my own personal performance in the new year.