Posted by: roblanger | May 24, 2010

Recovery and Beyond

Recovery from my goal marathon has gone surprisingly well. Certainly, it’s been better than what I experienced after Around the Bay, and that was only 30km.

So, now that I’ve achieved my goal of qualifying for the Boston Marathon, what’s next? Well, in the immediate future, I have a race next weekend in Nova Scotia; The Cabot Trail Relay. I participated in this event last year and had such a blast that I wouldn’t have missed it for anything this year.

But, back to what’s really next. I’m the kind of person that believes in the Japanese philosophy of kaizen. In a nutshell, this is the concept of continual improvement, primarily applied in a business context, but there’s no reason it can’t and shouldn’t be applied on a personal level either. So to keep me motivated and improving, I need a new BHAG.

For those of you who’ve never come across this acronym (pronounced bee-hag), it stands for Big Hairy Audacious Goal. My raison d’etre for this blog was to help me achieve my previous BHAG of qualifying for Boston. Having accomplished this goal, I now need something even bigger.

I have two thoughts in mind. The first would be to go faster. How much faster? Well, I think if you’re going to have a BHAG, it has to be very fast, and in the case of the marathon, I think in my case, breaking 3 hours would take a tremendous amount of effort and good fortune. I know what kind of effort it took for me to stumble across the line in 3:13 so to even begin to think about shaving 14 minutes off of that time is pretty scary.

The second would be to go further. How much further? Well, I’m pretty confident that I could do a 50k ultramarathon given my current fitness. I’m not so sure about a 50 miler though. Now that’s a BHAG!

I’m going to take a bit of time before I decide on this one. Both will require a big commitment of increased training. I don’t want to cut into family time any more than I did during my training for Boston so this new BHAG will require some careful planning.

Any comments or suggestions would be appreciated.



  1. A sub 3hr marathon would require another 13/14 minutes off. How much did you shave off your marathon time the last time ?. That will give you an indication. And the other thing to consider is that things get harder as you get faster. So going from previous marathon to the mississ. marathon, lets say you took off 15 min (u know the exact number) is easier than taking another 13 minutes off for going sub-3hr.

    I am trying to see whether I can go from 3:32 to 3:20 in order to qualify for Boston. I am not sure if this is a reasonable/realistic goal.

    50Miler is also a good goal as it is about two mathons back to back. But most likely that would be a trail run which could be a new/good experience. I am thinking about doing one of these trail runs as well just to experience it and see if i like it.

    I hear complaints from my family every now and then about all the time I spend running rather than being with the family. Anymore increases will not be taken too lightly.

    good luck whatever you choose. They are both worthy goals although I think trail running maybe more fun although i have not tried it yet.


  2. Hi Essa,

    Thanks for the feedback.

    I’m not sure that my improvement from my previous marathon would help me. I shaved 1 hour and 43 minutes off that one! That was a different mind and different body, that just intended to complete the distance.

    The 50 miler I’m thinking about is in September in Haliburton. I haven’t done much trail running, but it looks like a lot of fun.

    I’m very fortunate that my wife and daughter never complained and only encouraged me to achieve my goal. I don’t want to take advantage of their kindness though, and I love the time that we spend together. My daughter is only 4 so these times are precious.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: