The Year I Let My Secret Out

I don’t know where to begin to adequately “recap” last year. Let’s start with the numbers…

Total Run Distance: 3710.5 KM (2305.6 mi)
(up from 2010 miles in 2010)

Total Bike Distance: 1320.8 KM (820.7 mi)
started July

Total Swim Distance: 77,680 m
started July

Races: 20
Marathons – 3
30K – 2
Half Marathons – 5
10K – 3
5K – 3
Triathlon – 2
Duathlon – 1
Other (City Chase) – 1

Personal Records:
Marathon – 3:34:54 (3:58:56 in 2010)
30K – 2:35:30 (2:42:34 in 2010)
Half Marathon – 1:40:06 (1:44:48 in 2010)
10K – 43:08 (49:19 in 2010)
5K – 20:40 (22:35 in 2010)

I kicked off last year with a new mantra that I adopted from Aron (originating from RunningLam): “I am just waiting for the perfect race to let my secret out.”

I worked hard, trained well, gained confidence and gradually learned that it was about more than “the perfect race”. The pieces started coming together and I managed to break through barriers I hadn’t realized were there. 2011 became a year of doing things I never imagined possible. I finally let my secret(s) out.

I ran 20 races including 3 marathons (all PRs, 1 being my secret marathon), 5 half marathons (2 PRs and 1 being my first time as a pace bunny), 2 30Ks (1 PR), 3 10Ks (1 PR) and 3 5Ks (all PRs). I don’t think I could have asked for a better racing year and I achieved things I never thought possible. *All results and reports are listed on my Races page.*

The highlight of the year was undoubtedly the day that hubs and I both qualified for Boston – an achievement made exponentially sweeter since we were able to share it.

I lost some of my running mojo over the summer months, but discovered an unexpected and sudden interest in triathlon and took up cycling and swimming. I absolutely loved my first duathlon and first and second tri and looked forward to taking it to the next level. The tri-nablers rejoiced…

Meanwhile training for my fall marathon was not going well (or so I thought) compared to my spring cycle and I did not expect a very good performance in October. I ended up having a great race and earning my second BQ finish, fast enough even with the new qualification standards. Turns out I didn’t necessarily need to run 60+ miles every week in order to run a strong marathon, and the added cycling and swimming and supplemented my training well.

My last race of the year ended up being my pacing gig as a 2:00 bunny, which was an extremely fun and rewarding experience.

The year ended on a very high note when I was able to secure hubs a spot in Boston 2012 (I had gotten in with the rolling registration process, while he hadn’t). Nothing could make me happier than knowing that we would be able to run our first Boston together afterall.

So that’s a wrap for 2011. I can’t wait to find out what surprised 2012 will bring.

Happy New Year!

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35 thoughts on “The Year I Let My Secret Out

  1. Wow! You had some huge pr’s in every distance–way to go! I’m hoping to drop a chunk of time off my races this year, though I’m not as speedy as you 🙂 … excited to see what your 2012 will bring!

  2. Your year was nothing short of amazing! It has been so much fun to watch develop this past year. Lord knows what you will accomplish in 2012–you will rock it, I have no doubt!

  3. seriously it has been so much fun to watch your year unfold. I mean that mileage is amazing, but really more impressive was how you handled all your races and how much fun you had. that is a lesson we can all learn and keep pushing to improve
    congrats on an awesome year

  4. You had such an amazing year and I am sure 2012 is going to be even better.

    Thanks for this – “Turns out I didn’t necessarily need to run 60+ miles every week in order to run a strong marathon, and the added cycling and swimming and supplemented my training well.”

    Kind of makes me feel better …

  5. What an amazing year! I absolutely love the ‘letting your secret out’ thing as well. I am sure 2012 will be equally as exciting and cannot wait to read about it…you are definitely a source of inspiration!

  6. I have missed a few posts and didn’t know about your secret present for your hubby.

    How wonderful for you two!! I can only imagine how thrilled you are and will be on that big day!

    Congrats! (And way to go for the entire year…talk about inspiring!)

  7. You are an inspiration, Marlene! Your big jump in your PRs is amazing. I know you worked hard for it, but it’s so nice to know that it is possible! Wishing you all the best for 2012!

  8. I knew it seemed like you were racing all the time. 20 WOW!

    You had an amazing year! Seriously. You simply dominated in everything you did. And ended it with that Boston surprise!! You two are inspiring!

    Following you is a little like the start of my favorite series after the season break. I’m watching wondering, “what will they do this year??”

  9. You had an amazing year Marlene! I can’t wait to see what happens in 2012! 2000+ miles for 2011 – that is amazing! I don’t know how you do it all, but it is amazing!

  10. Marlene,

    I’m so glad to stumble upon your blog (from Tall Mom’s 1,000 Miles spreadsheet) because I got to watch your progress throughout the year and it has indeed been an amazing journey. You inspire me!


  11. You’ve had an amazing and fantastic year Marlene. You’ve improved on every distance, all your hard work definitely payed off.

    I’ve said it before and say it again: when I grow up, I want to be like you. You have so much determination to reach your goals, I love, love, love it.

    Can’t wait to see what 2012 will bring you. Think I’ll stick around to see 🙂

  12. you seriously had the best year ever!! so proud of you and all your accomplishments, it’s been so fun watching you kick ass. hope 2012 is just as good to you!!

  13. It was so inspiring and motivating to watch you realize what you’re really capable of. Your marathon training + experience was a lot of what motivated me to stop thinking it would be “too hard” to reach that BQ goal – it’s hard work, but never out of reach! 🙂

    Can’t wait to see what secret you’ve got up your sleeve (in your running shoes?) for 2012!

  14. You had the best year! I am so proud of you and have loved reading about all your adventures. It’s been really inspiring to watch you — and I’m hoping to get my running mojo back soon. It’s hard not want to run after reading about all the stuff you’ve been up to. And it’s hard to think that 2012 will be better than 2011 but I just know it will be for you!!!

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