Archive for General Blog Thoughts

Training plan updated to take me to June and the Manitoba Marathon

Updated my training plan to take me to June and the Manitoba Marathon

Also created a new page to keep what my training plan was to run 3 half marathon races in the fall of 2013 and the 2014 Goofy Challenge.

Biggoofyrunner thoughts for 2014 – bring it on!

I have posted my year end review already but now I want to talk about my thoughts for 2014.  I won’t call them resolutions because anything I need to resolve to do I shouldn’t be waiting until the new year to start on…so let’s call them thoughts or ideas for now and some will become goals over time.

I basically have a few themes of things I need to work on and really they are pretty similar to last year:

  • Sleep – just in general I know I don’t get enough sleep and I am tired a lot of the time.  This leads to me replacing sleep with carbs.  I look for the quick energy of the carbs to push me through when I am burnt and it usually ends up being not very good carbs either that play havoc with my weight.
  • Diet – building off the theme above I need to work more on my diet.  I have not been as consistent as I should on having a good solid protein breakfast – this is a priority as is ensuring my work lunches have a good balance with fruits and proteins.  I have to do this while limiting salt and anything that can cause water retention.
  • Get my weight down / body fat percentage down.  Ideally I would like to get myself just under 200 pounds – maybe 195-197 range.  And I would like to try to balance out the running by bringing more weight lifting into the mix and settling out near 10% body fat if possible.  This would have huge benefits for my health in general and my running specifically
  • Running – this is a tough one to decide what my goals will be and a lot will depend on how well I do at Goofy in January.  If I beat my PR on the full then I will be wanting to drive even lower and things go really well would there be a potential of a BQ?  Buggered if I know right now but if I get my weight down and train very hard then maybe there is an outside chance.  Goofy will tell me more but I am thinking that 3:30 should be possible for me but 3:15 would take blinding focus.  On the more realistic side the half marathon PR of 1:46:11 still needs to fall as well.
  • Blog – I want to extend more what I do with the blog and get better with how I use it and social media.  I am constantly learning new things and will continue to try different things to see what works for me.  I also want to build up (our sub site for Disney inspiration) – write up more stuff that isn’t specifically running related and slowly evolve into more writing about the kids and life in general.


I’m only going to get a bit deeper into the running thoughts here – the others will evolve naturally over the year as long as I work on them.  The running requires a bit more of a plan.  And for a plan I need to have some races booked or at least being looked at so I can build my training plan accordingly.  So far I only have one race book after the Goofy Challenge but I have several thoughts about other races.  I will try to go through those below and explain why I think they would help me get better.

Races for 2014:

  • Goofy Challenge in January at Disney World – already booked – this is my 4th one and should be my best yet.  This event is a big part of why I have gotten back into running.
  • WPS Half Marathon – 10th anniversary of the race and my 3rd – already signed up.  May 4th (Sunday).  It is good to have a spring run to keep me going through the winter after the Goofy is done.  I think my half PR needs to get reset on this race.  There’s some motivation.
  • Fargo Marathon? Not sure on this one but it is May 10th (Saturday) – would be an easy drive down and a good flat race and would help keep my levels higher putting me in a better position for the Manitoba in June.  Similar to what I indicated for the WPS half a spring race will keep me driving through the winter.  My motivation nosedived this past spring and I think having a marathon on the ticket earlier in the year would help prevent that from happening.
  • Manitoba Marathon – not signed up yet but expect to do it – June 15th – will be there to push hard up to the race and maybe set a new PR – If I don’t do it at Goofy in January it MUST happen on this race.  Would hope then to be going into summer is super shape and then build on that with pool resistance exercises and additional running through the summer.
  • Treherne marathon?  This one is up in the air – it is in September and with the heat through the summer I’m not sure I will be wanting to do full marathon training in that (that and I want to spend as much time in the pool with the kids as possible).  The race also has lots of back country loose gravel roads and not sure I want to do that – will depend on where my head is at after the Manitoba.  Most likely not but maybe if I need to prove something.
  • Half marathons in the fall – the 3 races I did this past fall did wonderful things for my motivation and fitness levels – would like to capitalize on that again going into Goofy training for 2015.  I will sort out the races later in the year and which ones I pick will depend on the next couple points below…
  • A fall marathon?  This might be nice – if I am really doing well it might be nice to set a new PR before going into Goofy in 2015 so that I could just enjoy that race without putting a lot of expectations on it.
  • Wine and Dine half marathon in November?  Would love to do this with the wife as a fun trip just for us – easier for us to train for and would be awesome to be in Epcot really late at night….will have to work on the wife on this one…we will have the annual passes after all…and it is within a month of our anniversary….
  • Goofy 2015 – will want to do this – 10th anniversary of the Goofy – my 5th Goofy in 2015…too many numbers easily divisible by 5.  This appeals to my OCD tendencies.  To make it worse, Goofy 2014 includes my 8th marathon, Manitoba will be my 9th and if I don’t do any more this year that would make my 10th as part of the Goofy Challenge.  Ooohh I got goosebumps thinking of all those 5s…or if I do those races and 2 more that would be 5 in 12 months…still wouldn’t qualify me for Marathon Maniacs but would be a great year.  I should stop typing this before I commit to something before I am ready…

Just a thought on mileage for the year – Google Earth shows a straight line from my house to the parking lot at Epcot at 1695 miles with the shortest road distance at 2005 miles….could I hit one of those distances in 2014?  With the right training plan it should be more than possible.  I will just have to decide which one – 1695 is definitely more realistic though.  I did 1400 this year and missed over 200 training miles and took about a total of 5-6 weeks completely off from running so 1695 is achievable for sure.

In Jan and Feb this year I basically took a few weeks off between the Goofy and when I started training for the Manitoba.  I won’t be doing that this year.  As soon as we get back from the Goofy we have 3 weeks before we go to Disney for a family trip.  That 3 weeks will be for running high speed shorter mileage runs and trying to get my weight down.  I will take a bit of a break at Disney World but we are staying at the Beach Club and I will be doing a few morning runs on the Boardwalk during that week.

Once we get back though training for the Manitoba Marathon starts…of if I am doing Fargo then I kick start the training program at about week 5.  This would certainly keep me at a higher level than dropping back to week 1.  As I write that it makes Fargo seem like an extremely good idea…will have to think more on that and see what that would actually look like from a training perspective.

In the next week or so I should be looking at posting my training plan for the first few months of the year and hopefully I can keep my motivation up.

OK – enough rambling – 2014?  Bring it on!

2013 BigGoofyRunner year in review!

Well…that about wraps it up for 2013!  It has been a bit of a doozy with lots of ups and downs but nicely everything is moving in a nice positive direction!  Basically I am heading into my 4th Goofy Challenge in the best shape I have ever been for one and seriously have the potential to bust my marathon PR of 4:15:01 that I set back in 2005 in the pre-kids time of my life.  I am also the most motivated and in the most positive head space I have ever been in going into any running race.

So with that in mind let’s look back on the year and do a bit of a review to see how things went.

I missed quite a few training miles back in the spring and early summer – mostly my motivation was in the tank but I found it again and have been able to finish the year strong while still making constant improvements.  I had 1580.75 miles planned / scheduled in 2013 including racing miles but only just hit 1400 in the end (as of New Years Eve).  Most of those missed miles were in the spring and early summer (and some in early winter when the weather turned bad and the treadmill gave up) but I managed to chew some of them back in the fall.  By the time of the Manitoba Marathon in June I was 225 behind on my miles but I made back over 65 miles between July and mid October before losing a few more in November and early December.  Even with the missed miles though I think I made steady progress right up until the treadmill died and weather outside turned sour – I regressed a bit during that period until the treadmill was fixed but I have made some of that back.

My weight has moved around a fair bit but I am ending the year down around 15 pounds from the beginning of the year and while I did not hit my goals there I am still doing very well.  All things considered I am happy with my weight but will keep pushing it down to get to my goal weight.  Considering I am down around 40 pounds from my starting weight of 257 from September 2012 – I am proud of myself here even though there is more work to do.

Races this year:

  • Walt Disney World Half Marathon – as part of my 3rd Goofy Challenge – 2:20:35 – slowed by crowds
  • Walt Disney World Full Marathon (6th full marathon) – as part of my 3rd Goofy Challenge – 5:25:54 – pretty rough heat that day
  • Winnipeg Police Service Half Marathon (WPS Half) – 1:56:13 – first time since 2005 I managed to get under 2 hours on a half marathon
  • Manitoba Marathon – 7th full marathon – 4:40:07 – got pretty toasty near the end as well
  • Run for Diabetes Research Half Marathon – Winnipeg – 1:49:54 – major improvement over May.  I was ecstatic about this one – with such a major improvement over May and where I have been for quite a few years now this race really changed my mindset and motivated the hell out of me.
  • Fort Garry Rotary Half Marathon – 1:47:50 – 2 minute improvement in 3 weeks – that is pretty good!
  • Winnipeg Fire and Paramedic Services Half Marathon (WFPS half) – 1:47:14 – still 63 seconds off of PR of 1:46:11.  But a good improvement from the race just a few weeks previous but not as good as I would have liked.  Got into Half Fanatics at this point! – #5180 (

Getting into Half Fanatics was a bit of surprise – hadn’t really thought about it much.  I had seen people with the gear at various races but figured they were out of my league but I did manage to make it in this fall (granted at the lowest level but still in!).  Very cool.  #5180 –

Also this blog is now just over a year old – first post was December 5th, 2012.  I started out using the site as more of a personal log which probably isn’t all that interesting for lots of people that would come to the site but hopefully I am improving in that respect.

I also got on Twitter this year (@biggoofyrunner) to help advertise the site more and to interact with other runDisney lovers and other running bloggers.  Without Twitter I’m not sure I would have found out about some great social media runners and been impacted by their amazing positive energy.  See the side links for links to some great sites.

So yeah – like I said at the beginning of the post – the year has had some ups and downs but for my health, my running and my weight things have generally been positive with constant and steady improvements.  This makes me feel very hopeful and full of energy going into the Goofy Challenge in January and for 2014 in general.



I will also be putting up another post shortly where I lay out some of my thoughts and ideas for 2014 and going into 2015.  Really not plans etched in stone yet but there are lots of things I would like to do in 2014 and I will lay those thoughts out in that post.

Officially got into #halffanatics – #5180 – whoohoo!

Hadn’t really thought about joining before but after the WFPS Half Marathon on the weekend I realized I had actually qualified.  Seems like the kind of crazy thing I want to be a part of!  Signed up – #5180

Now how am I going to move up to the next level?  Hmmm

#wfpshalfmarathon – am I ready?

Winnipeg Fire and Paramedic Services (WFPS) half marathon is tomorrow morning.  I’m not worried about the distance at all – this will be my third half marathon race this fall and I have had half marathon distance (or longer) training runs pretty much every weekend since mid-August.  I did set myself a goal of getting a PR on this one though and I frankly have no idea if I am going to hit it or not.

The rest of the post is going to be a bit “stream of consciousness” as I try to work through my thoughts – I apologize if it is a bit hard to follow.

Race times for half marathon distance (PR and this fall):

Personal best – 2002 Manitoba Marathon half marathon – 1:46:11

September 2nd – Run for Diabetes Research half marathon – 1:49:54

September 22nd – Fort Garry Rotary Club half marathon – 1:47:50

October 19th – WFPS half marathon – ?


I have been training hard and in general my runs have been getting faster (even my long slow weekend runs are getting faster) so I think I have trained about as well as I can – I missed one speed run in the time between the Sept 22nd race and this one but most of my other runs have been longer than planned and I have done about an extra 30 miles in the past 4 weeks over the scheduled miles.  I am at the point where a half marathon distance weekend run causes no issues and I rarely even take water with me on those runs any more.

So distance isn’t a problem but speed might be.  I have done a lot of speed training in the past few weeks and that does seem to be helping my overall speed but I also wanted to lose more weight than I have in the past few weeks.  I came down 4 pounds between the Sept 2nd and 22nd races and hope for that or more before the race tomorrow.  That planned weight reduction would help hit a new PR for sure but it is looking like I might only be down about 2 pounds or so from the Sept 22nd race so I can’t really count on weight loss to give me a speed boost on this race.

This means getting a PR this race is going to be about the extra speed training I have been doing, fuelling better while on the move and having a more consistent pace.  I can’t train any more for extra speed before tomorrow morning but the second 2 items can be planned for but will require discipline.

On the last race I kept missing Gatorade at the water stops and ended up bonking near the end of the run – since I only missed my PR by 99 seconds on that race the bonking played a big factor in missing the PR.  So I am going to make sure I am carrying enough fuel tomorrow – on that last race I had a water bottle in my running belt that I never touched – I will put some actual fuel in that bottle instead and I will force myself to fuel a bit every mile or so – even if it is just a mouthful it will make a difference.  Also since I haven’t lost the weight I was looking to I am pretty sure I am better fueled going into the race which should also help.

Consistent pacing – on the last race I saw mile paces at the start way faster than my planned pace and then had some miles mid race that were way slow.  Then with the bonking it was all I could do to maintain my planned pace and I didn’t have enough left to push the last few miles faster and make up some time.  Luckily this race has all individual miles marked which will help me ensure my pacing is on track.  I will start doing the first 3 miles about 10 seconds per mile slower than my planned pace then drift up to the pace I want from there  until the last couple miles and then I will see what I have left in the tank.  I am trying to plan for a 1:45 finish time and if I can go faster then awesome, if I am slower or run into issues I will then have a 71 second buffer to work with to still beat my PR.

Weather is going to play a factor too though and what that may be is really unknown right now.  It will be hovering around freezing tomorrow morning (above or below depending on the forecaster) and there is a chance of rain and snow overnight.  I should be ok for gear for the cold but if it rains and it does make it below freezing there could be slippery sections of the race to watch out for – there are areas that will be quite sheltered so it won’t melt quick even if the sun comes out.  Snow itself wouldn’t be a big issue but depending on if it rains a bit before rain falls you could have hidden slippery sections to watch out for.  Basically I could have to make the decision tomorrow morning to go slower than hoped just to make sure I am really paying attention and reduce the risk of damaging anything.  I have to protect the Goofy Challenge in January so I can put up with a pull or a strain from pushing hard but any sort of real damage would be devastating.

I will have to watch the mental game as well – I think my head is in the game as of right now but who knows what morning will bring?  If all else fails I will grab the 1:45 pace bunny and keep on his/her heels.

Anyway – should do a last minute check of my gear and get to bed shortly!