Running Goals for 2017

I love writing out goals.  I love the anticipation of what is to come and somehow putting it in writing motivates me to work toward making it happen.

As I looked back on my running goals for 2016, I realized I had some big goals! I wanted that 5k pr AND the half pr AND the marathon pr AND… the list goes on.

One of my lessons of 2016 was to focus on one thing at a time.  You can’t get stronger and faster and improve in the marathon and the 5k all at the same time.  Well, that’s not entirely true. Newer runners might be able to as the margin at which you can improve is greater.

Those of us who have been running and training for several years are closer to our plateau and need to really focus on those specific goals one at a time.

That is how I got my marathon pr… I focused on it, trained with race specific workouts and shaved ten minutes off!

So with that in mind, I’m going to break my year into seasons of focus.


My focus for the winter is to maintain a good base and throw some short intervals back in, with a focus on the 5k.  I have one 5k on New Year’s Day and will likely need to throw in 1-2 more but I’d love to improve raw speed and get that sub-20 5k. Goal: 19:45Verona final push


January- March

I’ll quickly transition into half marathon specific training, with an emphasis on longer tempo runs to prepare myself to finally break that half barrier I’ve been stuck at for the last 3-4 races. Half marathon goal: Beat 1:35!  From other races, I know 1:33-1:34 should be within my reach.  By the end of 2017, goal is sub 1:32.



After the March half, I will likely add in a ten mile race and/or another half marathon.  As those races wrap up, my goal will be a short season of rest and recovery! So important.



Early summer is usually about speed again.  I’ll add a few more 5ks to my schedule to keep practicing this painful distance. Goal: 19:30

By late summer, there is a chance I will be ramping up mileage for a fall marathon.

Wait, what? Didn’t I say I’m done with the marathon? I don’t know what is wrong with me but right now that idea of training for another marathon just sounds like SO much fun!!  My husband, of course, is not surprised.  He never bought the whole “I’m done with marathons” thing.  But we’re still discussing it, as I know it requires the whole family on board.



Likely a tune up half marathon and possibly a full marathon.  If I go for it, goal: Beat 3:23.  I think 3:15 is doable with the right training and if all things come together on race day.

Beyond racing, I want to keep running because it’s fun and I really love it!

My non race goals are actually the same as last year:

  • stay strong and injury free (NO injuries this year!! Woohoo!!)
  • do more trail running (with friends)
  • incorporate 1-2 running weekends with friends (hope this works out!)
  • find a few kids races and/or family fun race events

I also want to experiment with an overall higher mileage year round to help build the aerobic engine and make these goals a bit easier to reach.

So that’s the plan! I’m excited to get started!

What’s one of your goals for 2017?

Do you focus on one goal or specific distance at a time?








21 thoughts on “Running Goals for 2017

    • Ha! True… but the half is the first goal. If I don’t hit it in the spring, I’m going to stick with it for the fall. If I do hit it, I’ll have a few months to convince my husband another marathon is a good idea!

  1. I love how you’re breaking the year into specific distance goals. With that kind of focus, you’ll be nabbing some nice new PRs.

  2. What marathon are you thinking of doing? I’m considering a marathon in 2017 but I am not sure which one… I like racing in warm weather.

    • How warm is warm? 🙂 I’m considering a fall marathon… possible Philly or Richmond in November. It will be coolish, possibly 30-40 degrees…but I’m not positive I’ll do it. I need to make sure the whole family is on board again and I want to see how the half marathons go first.
      Laura recently posted..Running Goals for 2017My Profile

  3. I like how you broke up your goals by the seasons!!! If your looking for a fast and flat fall marathon do Kiawah! ( or even Charleston marathon- but that one is in January, Kiawah is in November)
    SC has some really beautiful races, mild fall/winter temps and are mostly flat which makes them ideal
    Anyways, I’m looking forward to following you along in 2017. With your determination and goal driven mindset, I foresee some big PRs in your near future!!
    Melissa Cunningham recently posted..Another post college PR!!My Profile

  4. Glad to hear your goals! I hopes that you will get as good as possible. In 2017, i wish that i can get the better achievement in the Boston race.

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  6. These are great Laura! I have set my 2017 goals, one of which is running my first Ultra marathon. Have you heard of Byrdband running products? I am going to use it to perfect my arm swing and stride length.

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