New Year, Same Goals, Some Changes

So, I haven’t been very consistent with this whole blog thing.  Seems that life always gets in the way of allowing enough time to write.  Well, hopefully I can get back on track for 2017 and be a bit more consistent with my posts.  As you may recall, I had written a post about goals for 2016.  Unfortunately, I failed to accomplish a majority of those.  My health wasn’t the best in 2016 with the worst UC flare that I’ve ever had at the beginning of the year.  This delayed things a bit for me and caused me to have what I would call an “off year” for running (I finished with just over 1000 miles).  I don’t like to make excuses, but that was the reality of the year for me.  Therefore, a lot of the 2016 goals are carry forward to 2017.  I still want to run a sub-19 minute 5K, run my first official 50K, and hit 1500 miles for the year.  The work-related goals are being toned down a bit, as there have been other things I’ve decided to accomplish first.

This year has begun fairly decently with 114 miles run in January.  There will be challenges as I recently went back into a flare of my UC.  The special diet that I follow had me in remission for about 9 months.  Fortunately, the symptoms this time around don’t seem to be as bad as the last flare, and I am vowing not to let it set me back.  I may need to make some decisions in terms of medication to get things under control, but I’m trying a few other things first.  A few weeks ago I ran the Chilly Cheeks 11K as my first race of the year.  It didn’t go quite as well as last year, but I kind of figured that would be the case since I haven’t been working on speed much lately and was probably in a little bit better shape at this time last year.  I will be going back to Hyner View for the 25K again in April.  Hopefully this time around I will be able to get some training done.  Last year I was too ill to really train at all for the race.  I hope to complete at least one race per month this year.  Currently I am registered for a 10K trail race in February and the Boulder Field 5oK in September.  This will be my first official 50K, which is taking place 5 days after my 40th birthday.  Aside from that, there are a few races being organized by my LRS at one of my favorite parks, and I plan on adding some others along the way.

Last year I represented Pearl Izumi as a brand Ambassador.  Well, in the middle of the year they announced that they would no longer be producing any run products and would be discontinuing their Ambassador program at the end of the year.  This was a shock to a lot of us that loved their products.  Not being the type of person to delay the inevitable, I began a search for a new shoe.  After doing some extensive research, I decided to give a fairly new company, Topo Athletic, a try.  I was drawn to them by their moto of “Move Better Naturally”.  I’ve had my fair share of injuries and felt that a shoe that promoted a more natural running style would be a good solution.  I first ordered a pair of their low- drop, wide toe box road running shoes and quickly fell in love with them.  Of course, I then needed to get a couple pair of trail running shoes as well, and they were also great.  I ran in the shoes for most of the second half of last year.  When I saw that they were accepting applications for their Ambassador program, I figured I would give it a shot since I quickly became very passionate about the brand.  The great news is that I was accepted into the program and will be representing Topo Athletic for 2017 (and hopefully beyond).  If you’re looking for an extremely comfortable shoe that promotes natural movement, then check them out at http://www.topoathletic.com.  You can even save 20% by using discount code TOPOROBERTS20 at checkout.  As of this moment, there aren’t any local stores carrying the brand, but there will be some good news that I will share about that soon.

Overall, I am very excited to see what 2017 brings.  There will be some challenges along with some firsts.  I will also be moving into a new age group in September when I turn 40.  I am looking forward to making it a great year and hope that you have a great year as well!

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