While I will detail out several new goals, it is important to note that I will be running very few races. Unfortunately, the side effects of having a new home and new baby means we have less money for me to pay for big races. Instead, many of my goals will focused around some pretty awesome adventure runs. I'm absolutely certain I won't be able to achieve all of these since I simply won't have enough time, but I sure want to try.
I do plan to do a few races this year. First on the list will be redemption at the Antelope Island Buffalo Run 50 miler. While I did actually reach my goal of nearly 8 hours last year, I felt like I didn't run the race well, struggled for at least 15 miles, and didn't actually achieve my true potential. This year I'm hoping to go back and push more towards 7:30.
Second, and without a doubt the most important goal on my list is to get into the Wasatch 100 and perform well. I have a few time goals in mind, which I won't publicize here. Let me just say that everything I do this year will be to prepare me for that race and 'just finishing' or even going over 30 hours is not an option for me. I will be going into it with the intent to achieve a new standard of racing, for me.
Me training on the Wasatch 100 course this past year
Finally, I will, of course, be racing the Pony Express Trail 100 again. Different from this past year, I won't actually be 'racing' it. My brother, Brent, is hoping to run the 50 miler, his first. My plan is to run the first 50 with him, nice and slow. Then hang out at the finish line with him for a while and enjoy seeing people. Then I'll chuck him in the van and continue on running the rest of my 100. It means that track record of coming in third will be thrown out the window, and most likely won't even see a sub-24 hour finish, but that won't matter. The purpose will be to just enjoy Brent's race and then cruise in and enjoy the rest of mine.
This is where things start to get a little crazy.
My first goal is to head back to Zion with some friends and finish what we started. The Zion Traverse. I actually plan to put a twist on this one, but I'll save that surprise for after I complete it.
Second is to go after another piece of unfinished business - complete the full 110 mile run on Skyline Drive in central Utah. Whether alone or with Davy Crockett, this thing is getting done this year. I have a new plan on how to crew it and friends who want to support me, so this is definitely on the books.
This past summer the MRC boys stripped the FKT on the Utah Triple Crown from me. It's time to get that back. I have a slightly new strategy that I think will shave some time. I'm also a better runner and that will help as I won't be slogging along the last 6 miles.
Standing atop South King's
Additional long-goals will include a potential shot at the FKT on the Uinta Highline Trail with some friends, a LONG slog of a run in the Wind Rivers, possibly doing a run of Gannett Peak in WY (this one would take priority of the long Wind Rivers run), Grand Canyon R2R2R (this is always a goal, every year), and start on my lifelong goal of running the entire Great Western Trail from the border of Idaho to the border of Arizona.
Other than that the only other real goal I have is to run at least one ultra distance run per month.
Not bad, right? If it seems like a lot, it is. It's more than I can do in one year without my wife outright killing me. Obviously I have to balance work and family in there, but if I can plan and save correctly I should be able to get to most of this. Like I said at the beginning, I want 2012 to be a new standard of running. Time to start get to work.