Report Card

Back in January, I posted my goals for the year.  Here's what I said about them then and how I did.
1. Run a marathon - my basic goal is just to finish, my "B" goal is to finish under 4:30, and my "A" goal...let's just say that the shorter the time, the happier I'll be. That said, I'll consider it a success if I cross the finish line after running (going) 26.2 miles.  Check! Finished the LaCrosse Marathon in 4:53, good enough to check off the "C" goal and leave me excited for another marathon.

2. Participate in an adventure race - I have one planned with my brother and would love to do others. We'll see what the year holds. Check! Check! Check! I did The Deuce, a Team-Virtus non-race, in March; the Berryman Adventure 12-hour (14.75 hour, but who's counting?), and the Castlewood 8-hour.  Adventure races are my new favorite thing.

3. Complete a sprint triathlon - I know it was only a virtual one, but the virtual half ironman showed me that I am perfectly capable of finishing a tri. The swimming was the biggest thing getting in my way, and while my swim was slow, I got it done. I have my eye on one in Carlyle. Fail.  I did no "official" trialthlons, though I did finish my friend Mike's Private Half-Ironman.  Triathlons are NOT my new favorite thing, but I'd still like to try one that I've actually trained for.

4. Ride a century - I'd like to continue doing one of these a year. Haven't even looked to see which one might catch my eye.  Fail. The first year since I started riding that I didn't do a century...and this year I could've done it on a road bike instead of hybrid.  My longest bike ride was the 56 in the half ironman.  I did get to do a lot of bike riding this year, but very few rides that were over 30 miles.

5. Improve my mountain biking skills - this goes hand in hand with #2, which doubles my motivation. It's also completely attainable because (a) "improve" is mighty general, and (b) there's lots of room for improvement. Definitely check! There's a long way to go, but I've also made a lot of progress.  My handling and confidence are way better; now I need to work on strength and getting comfortable with speed.

6. Go to the gym/strength workout at least 1x week - Strength training is a huge gap in my exercise agenda  I was doing great with this throughout the summer until I fell and hurt my shoulder.  Once I was out of the routine I never went back and got re-started.  Fail.

7. At least 1/2 hour of yoga 1 x week - See above. I'm about as flexible as a frozen rubber band. Total fail.  I think I did part of a yoga DVD once. 

8. Continue to set PRs - also very attainable because I intend to keep competing in new distances and therefore set PRs by default. :) That said, I'd like to reduce my 5K time.  PRs set in the 5K (took 1:45 off) and the Pere Marquette race (46 minutes faster, though that was largely due to much better race-day conditions). 

9. Join a running club - the support and camaraderie would be great. I don't know why this is such a big hurdle for me. I'm a much better "virtual" joiner than real-life one.  Check!  One of the best moves I made all year was completing this joining goal.  I joined Team Revolution (a women's bike group) and the Metro Tri Club, and the friendships and training and fun I've had as a result have made this one of the best years of my life.

10. Make a new recipe at least 2 x month - I cook "real" meals most every night, and one of the biggest stumbling blocks for me is coming up with something new. I have stacks of recipes I've clipped from the newspaper and magazines. I'm going to start pulling one out, making it, and then either getting rid of it or writing it into my cookbook.  Fail.  Maybe one new recipe.  Plus, I bought an acorn squash to try something new and it's now rotting on my counter.  Double fail.

11. Start working towards my Master's degree - I've been saying this for 9 years now. I never thought I'd be someone who didn't go back to school, but life gets in the way. I have one less excuse this year because I have a tuition waiver from hosting a student teacher.  Incomplete.  I was accepted to grad school this fall and will start in January.

12. Keep "Fun Kate" front and center - It's too easy to say no to new things or goofy things. I want to keep and cultivate a spirit of fun and adventure. I've really been conscious of this since it hit me that I only have 2 years left until both my older boys are (hopefully!) away at college. I want them to remember me doing things with them, not just watching them. Check, mostly.  I've definitely spent a great deal of time out of my comfort zone this year and wrapped myself in the adventure spirit.

Of course, I have lots of other things I'd like to see happen in 2011...lose weight, get finances in better shape, get organized, etc. I'm sure I'll be seeing those in 2012, 2013, 2014.... Yep. 

Slow-down Saturday

I definitely overdid it last weekend, and it took me until about Wednesday before I felt like myself again.  All I had planned for this weekend was to go to a one-hour orienteering meet, my first solo venture.  It was going to be a very relaxing weekend, sleeping in both days, can't remember the last time that happened. 

And then something different came up for Sunday. 
And then Robin emailed about riding at 7 a.m. on Saturday.
And then Lindsay emailed about running on Saturday.

And you know I have a problem saying no. What to do, what to do?

I ended up skipping the Saturday ride.  It sounded like so much fun, except that if the trails weren't frozen enough we'd be riding the roads, and the thought of a road ride in 30 degree weather (especially if I was dressed for the trails) just wasn't that appealing.  Meanwhile, I never get to see Lindsay anymore, and the thought of sleeping in since we weren't running until was pretty sweet.  I actually considered meeting Robin's group at 7 and riding until it was time to meet Lindsay at 9, but my boss just yelled at me for overdoing it, and last weekend suggests that maybe she was right.

So we met up at 9 at the local singletrack.  It was still chilly enough that there was ice in the puddles.

Lindsay bravely tested the ice.  Since it cracked we decided to avoid running on (in) it.
  We had a fantastic, easy run.  Rarely does any run feel easy to me, but this one was just wonderful.  Maybe it was because we were running that slowly, but I prefer to think it was the company.  Great conversation, and I was only insulted once.  I mean, only a true friend could ask "Do you think you can find a big enough pair [of underwear]" without sounding mean.  Perhaps you'll see what that meant tomorrow. 

<3 Trails <3

We ran for about an hour, never spotted the deer carcass, never tripped, and while we didn't have time to grab coffee at Starbucks or remember the books we were meaning to exchange, we both went home happy.

After spending some time on a sewing project (which you may or may not also hear about tomorrow, especially if you're my friend on Facebook or like SuperKate on Facebook), I went outside to play some football with my boys.  Boys vs. girl.  I'm sure I don't have to tell you I got creamed. 

I'm about to get tackled.
J is fast, and N is fast and strong.  It's like running into a truck, or having a truck run into you.  The couple times he shoved me while blocking for J, I about fell over, so then he started picking me up and (relatively gently) putting me on the ground.  Eventually, I gave up and just took a dive every time he came near me.

Not quite the Heisman pose
All in all, it's been a very good day.  While I was hugely outscored in football, I ended the game with all of my bones and joints intact, which is a victory as far as I'm concerned.  And it's been a very good year.  I hope the next one (and the rest of this one!) can measure up.


  1. I am a much better armchair QB than ACTUAL QB. But it's fun at least! :)

    I loved reading through your goals - I really feel like joining a club was one of my best moves of the year. It's made an enormous difference.

  2. overall, i think you had a really good year. focusing on the things you enjoy is so important and i think it's great! i can feel your excitement for adventure racing, mountain biking. i think i feel the same as you with the yoga ...boring! let 's hope for less deer corpses in 2012!

  3. Eh, you're not missing much - adventure races are MUCH more fun than triathlons ;)

    Yoga and new recipes or not, sounds like a great year. Looking forward to hearing what 2012 has in store (congrants on grad school!)

  4. Good for you for even setting goals. Don't think I did much of that this year. I did vow to do a duathlon and that was a fail. Boo.

  5. If it's any consolation, I was a total fail at yoga too. Haha :)

    Those are very impressive goals. You did well to meet as many as you did!

  6. Enjoyed the recap and will look forward to the list of 2012 goals.

  7. you've had an amazing year Kate! So impressed with your record of goals and accomplishments. :)

  8. I think #12 outweighs all other goals. Great year!

  9. I am way behind on blog reading (dang life!), and I sincerely apologize. I loved reading your report card, I'd say you passed pretty dang well... especially considering all that you do, which is super crazy :). I think I'd be recovering from everything and could never put in any mileage during the week - ha (that's me and my old age creeping up - bleh!). I love #12 - you do so many fun things and your kids will remember all the adventures you've done together with them, and remember the times you pushed yourself out of your comfort zones and be very proud of you (though, if they're like my daughter, won't actually SAY it :)). Very proud - and impressed - of you, Super Fun Kate! Looking forward to our full Ironman goal here soon, too :).

  10. You met a lot of goals. Your adventure racing is really taking off. I want to ride a century and should make that a goal of 2012. I am def. putting a tri.

    I love the pic of the shoe on the ice. I am embarrassed to tell you how much I love cracking the ice in those puddles. I go out of my way to do it. Like popping packing bubbles I guess.

    Your 2012 will be great.

  11. You did SO great this year on your goals!! AMAZINGLY great! The yoga fail is on my poop list, too. I was so determined to add it in, but it just didn't happen :-( I can honestly say that yoga is NOT my thing.

  12. It was a great thing to fix some goals to be focused and you did a very good job. Mission accomplished.
    You gave me a good idea, I am going to plan my 2012.
    The "icy pic" is amazing.

  13. Great report card Kate! Do you get any money for it? :-).

    You may not have done a official tri but you did cover 70.3 miles in one session, and got a shirt to prove it :-). Let me know when you want to do a real tri, Carlyle has a nice Sprint and Oly in May.

    A simple acorn squash recipe is to cut it in half, clean out the seeds, put butter and brown sugar on it, wrap the halves in foil then bake it or grill it for about an hour (at 350) until soft.

  14. eat therefore i run. are you going to revive the recipe idea? keep kickin! i like the whole adventure race idea - some day for me. i will never tri a tri again. swimming is not my thing. at least hundreds, of others all at the same time. i should have drowned twice in my only effort.

  15. You forgot #13: Beat your nemesis. FAIL!

    Still gloating. Let me know when the statute of limitations expire.

    I think your best chance in 2012 will be one of the longer running events, such as a 10-miler or half marathon. Let me know which of those you're going to do so I can skip them.

  16. Congrats on a great year! But, you know the year isn't over, right? You could still squeeze in a triathlon, a century ride, finish grad school, and make 24 new recipes. Well, maybe not. Again, great job this past year.

    Maybe a goal for 2012 should be to become an official member of a mediocre adventure racing team. I know a guy who could help you out with that.

    Can't wait to see what '12 has in store for you.

  17. Super great year! I did the yoga CD once too.

    Getting into grad school is terrific, never an incomplete! You are learning always just look at your own accomplishments this year!

  18. Wow! That was an amazing list of goals, and you did amazingly. 2012 will be even better! I totally think hanging out with you would be super fun. :^)


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