Sunday, January 5, 2014

My 2014: The Chase

For most of the year we are very busy and often don't see friends who are training for different disciplines or on different training cycles.  So, the holidays are always a great time to catch up with everyone.  You can always script conversations.  They are divided into 2 parts:  How'd last year go and What are you up too this year?  This past year has been really good to me, except for a horrific bike wreck.  I put my main focus on completing a half ironman and I am happy to say that not only did I survive it, but I finished 2nd in my age group.  I will spare you further details on last year, because I want to talk about 2014 today.

I was lucky enough to be asked to share my Spring training experiences for a 4th year now for the Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon.  For those reading my blog for the first time, I'd like to introduce myself.  My name is Matthew Beal.  My friends know me better as "Beal" and a few who don't know me, probably think my name is Bill.  A few years back I weighed over 330 pounds and almost drowned because I was too out of shape to swim to safety.  It was the wake call I needed and began living a healthy lifestyle.  Since that day I have lost over a 100 pounds and have completed in over a 100 races.  Marathons and Triathlons used to be things that were only dreamed about, but with hard work and dedication.  I now do them regularly.

My 2014 Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon blogger profile.

Enough about the past.  Lets talk about the future.  My plan for attack this year wasn't an easy decision.  I was targeting an Ironman in 2014 for the past 2 years, but after doing a half last year.  I needed a break.  Training 15+ hours a week crushed my social life.  I don't want to fall into that same trap this year and I want to keep my New Year's resolution of putting myself out there.  Unlike last year.  So, I will be pushing off the Ironman till 2015 and focusing on shorter races this year.  

2014 will be "The Chase" for me as I will be chasing the HFP Racing Age Group Championship this year.  I'm stealing the whole "The Chase" motto from the Ohio State football team, but it really fits.  We are all chasing something.  Some of us are chasing a goal, some a new distance, a personal record, weight loss, or a healthier lifestyle.  Regardless of what your intent this year is.  Chase it down.  Don't let anything stand in your way of what you set out to do.  

Ok, back to the HFP Championship.  There are 6 pre-selected events and I will need to compete in at least 4.  I will get points for where I finish in my age group.  The final race is in Akron this September and pays double points.  I can't think of a better way to finish off the year than head to my hometown and compete for a championship.  

I will be doing a lot of racing this year and have listed a schedule of events I plan to attend.  I will also be doing the 10K this year at the Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon as it will fit in better with my program.  So, much last like year. I will be talking about running, cycling, and swimming.  Focusing on  how those activities will help you for your race experience at the Cleveland Marathon.  

Who else is ready for 2014?  Are you ready to join me in The Chase?  If you're ready to lay it all on the line this year and work harder than you ever have before to achieve your goals.  Then join me in The Chase this year.

Fellow marathon blogger, Jessica McCartney joined my in The Chase today.  Check out her blog to hear how spinning has helped her running.  Also, I regularly spin at Psycle and Harness Cycle if you'd like to join the pain fun. 

2014 Race Schedule

1/18:  Harmes Garage Sale 5K
1/25:  Blue Balls and Glass Cutters 5K
2/15:  Chili Bowl 5K
2/22:  Snowball 5K
3/15:  St. Malachi 5 miler
3/22:  Barry-Roubaix 36 mile bike race
4/22:  Buzzard Duathlon
5/10:  Nordonia Hills Duathlon
5/18:  Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon 10K
5/25:  Clays Park Triathlon
6/1:  Deer Creek Triathlon
6/8:  Sunday in June 100K
6/14:  Maumee Bay Triathlon
6/22 Bay Village Triathlon
7/6:  Lorain Triathlon
7/13:  Caesar Creek Triathlon
7/19:  Ice Cream Odyssey 100K
7/26:  Bay Village Triathlon 2
7/27:  Fairport Harbor Triathlon
8/17:  Vermillion Triathlon
9/14:  Portage Lakes Triathlon


ClevelandJoe @ The Frolicking Fells said...

Great post - love the idea of "The Chase". I'm doing the Snoball 5K too - I did it last year and I thought it was a really great, flat, and fun race. My brother ran cross country and track for Bay and it was fun to run with him and hang out afterwards. My dad lives in Bay and I enjoyed running in the neighborhood in which I spent a lot of time growing up. The post-race food spread looked exceptional too(although I was feeling awful after running hard and PR'ing and couldn't eat it)

Anonymous said...

I'm in for The Chase, spinning all the way!
I'm happy to see there is a 2015 Ironman in your future. Maybe I'll learn how to swim by then.

mason said...


Anonymous said...

Impressive race schedule! Go, Beal! You've got this!