Planning your year

Right now, lots of people are planning their training and racing for 2014. And with so many great races out there, sometimes it’s tough to pick just a few. So should you bother to limit yourself?


A couple weeks ago, I had a client ask me if I thought that running four half-marathons in a year was too many. For her, my answer was no. Here was my thinking:


  • She is an experienced runner who has run several half-marathons before this year, and even a couple marathons. The distance itself is not going to be a challenge for her.
  • I told her to pick two of the four that would be her goal races — one in the spring and one in the fall/winter. The other two would have to be races that support her goal races. By that I mean races that we put into her training knowing that she wouldn’t be ready to run her best yet. Maybe we would turn them into a workout, or maybe just use them as a more fun and interesting long run. But we wouldn’t use them as an all-out race.


For someone who is new to running or is trying a new distance, my advice might be different. But the important thing to remember is that how and when you do the races is going to matter just as much as the number.