In an earlier post I listed a bunch of goal times for the events I am planning on doing in 2009 and that is fine, but I think that realistically I should have three goal times for every race - faster than I have gone before, about as fast as I have gone before, finish in one piece. That means that my training for an event falls roughly in the same categories. If I want to run a race faster, I have to train faster/harder. If I want run a race about the same as I have in the past, I have to train like have in the past. If I want to simply finish a race, I have to train enough to make it through while remaining (or getting) healthy. Some of the performance comes from experience and learning new tricks. I consider those improvements a freebee - to be considered but no necessarily banked on. This way the pressure is off, I continue to enjoy the journey and the times will come.
Overall goal for this year - faster.