Great anticipation

With time away from the Northland’s wintery grip, I’ve had a chance to put in quite a few miles in the sun. And it makes me look forward to spring and summer with even great anticipation.

Even after completing a 50K trail race just more than a week ago, my sights are set on what races and events will be next. The number of options throughout North Dakota and Minnesota is quite impressive.

A few times each year, I spend a morning updating the race listing on this blog: the events include running, duathlon, triathlon and obstacle course races. There are event listings on other websites, some which are now getting to be quite comprehensive, and I’ve listed only major races outside the Red River Valley and central Minnesota. My goal is to aggregate many of the listings on sites, and include events in which organizers contact me, to provide another resource to people who are looking for ways to participate and be active.

Personally, this year it is difficult to determine which events I want to do, especially with so many options. There are a lot of terrific events, especially in May and June. Timing and race distances have to match up to offer an opportunity to prepare me for the year’s priority goal, which is running well at the New York City Marathon. The major options for the spring include the Fargo Marathon, Minneapolis Marathon, Grandma’s Marathon and the Liberty Triathlon. There are a handful of other events throughout the summer that are appealing. The Wild Hog Half Marathon in Grand Forks looks like a well-timed event for my NYC preparations.

Can I knock off a few other secondary goals along the way? Can I resume my hope of competing in some longer distance triathlons and still put myself to hunt for a personal best in the marathon?

That marathon goal is probably a bigger question mark than completing an Olympic or half iron distance triathlon. To position for a personal best requires a lot of discipline, training and some luck, especially when it comes to the weather.

As a single guy, I have a little more flexibility than many to enter races or travel for events. Still, I sometimes need to get creative since my plans include accommodating my Golden retriever, Coby.

Most important, though, I want to keep it all in perspective: how lucky I am to have a great job and work with talented professionals, live in a terrific community and neighborhood, enjoy the friendship of good friends, and benefit from the blessings of good health.

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