Planning for 2010 started on 8/22/09 when I qualified for the ITU Age Group World Championships, to be held in Budapest on 9/11/10. The rest of the training year will point towards that race.
This year's plan has the usual suspects, but I've dropped two out of state races I did last year. I also added two early running races in February and March- it will be good to get the competitive juices flowing at a point when I've been inside for a few months and still have a couple of months of crappy weather. Finally, there's still a hole in my plan. I need one more olympic distance race somewhere around late July or early August.
So here goes...
February- Last year I did the Cape 10 mi race "for the heck of it." I used the first few miles as warm up and had no pressure for a quick run. I ended up descending every mile, finishing at a 6:30 pace. Oh yeah, I hadn't run more than 6 before that. This year I'll try to put in a better effort. There are a few folks that beat me last year that will make good targets (Jeff, Ange, Mary....). I went 1:15 last year, so if the conditions are comparable (doubtful), maybe a 1:10-1:12 is possible. One week later is the Polarbear 5k.
March- I'll do my first snowshoe race ever, a 5k at Pineland. I have a good pair of under-used running snowshoes that I love. There are a whole bunch of trails near the house that I love to use on the weekends.
May- The tri season will kick off with the Polarbear sprint. It's the first chance for tri egos to see how the winter training went. Two weeks later is a fantastic bike time trial, Crank the Kanc. It's a one-way race from Conway to the top of the Kancamagus Highway. The first 17 are rolling, the last 5 UP. Red-lining for about 70 minutes. It's a great data-gathering race. I can compare the power files to 2008 and 2009.
June- In my mind, the season really kicks off with the Mooseman Olympic distance race. I was 5th in my AG last year, and 13th overall. It can be a very competitive race and you never know who will show up. This year, there's more competition for Mooseman due to the 70.3 the next day and the popular Rev3.
July- Urban Epic is a good race to do, even though it's just a sprint now.
August- I'll try to defend my title at the Bethel Tri. Winning overall last year from wire to wire was a thrill last year.
September- World Championships. 'Nuf said.
As for specific goals for the season, I'm having some trouble. I made Team USA, and I know I don't have a chance at the podium in Budapest. Top half of my AG would be good. So there's no "next step" race on the horizon. Locally, I'll always want to do well against my local rivals (Jeff, Rob, and 70.3 man Bob T.).
While it's not very specific, perhaps my big goal is to wear the uniform with pride. Having my name on my ass means there's a target on my back. Let's face it- people will want to knock me off simply because I have USA on my chest. They should. I certainly did the the same the last two years. So now it's my turn to be the target. And it's my job to move that target as far away as possible.