I turned 44 today. Only one more year until I move into a new (hopefully less competitive) age group. (You might be a runner if birthdays make you think about age groups.) I celebrated with a tempo run of 5.17 miles for 5/17. (Good thing I wasn’t born on December 31. I suppose I could handle a 12.31 mile run, but I’d rather not.)

I don’t really want to do a year in review, since I already covered the first 6 and a half months in my 2016 wrap-up, and I’ll save the other 5 and a half months for my 2017 wrap-up. I will say that at this time last year, I was working my way back from my ankle injury, so my mileage was a lot lower, although my pace was faster. I think I was trying to make up for the low mileage by pushing myself harder, and in hindsight, maybe it was too much. This year, even though the paces for my training runs may be a little bit slower, I think my legs are in better condition. My average pace for the 2016 Teal Diva, right before I turned 43, was 9:21/mile. This year, right before I turned 44, it was 8:42/mile.

I ran my 5000th mile at the age of 43. And, of course, I was 43 the first time I ran the New York City Marathon. So I guess it was a pretty big year. Here’s to 44 being even better.