2021: The Stats

I love running stats! So much so that every year around this time I write a post about running stats. This may only be interesting to me, but that’s fine, as this entire blog may only be interesting to me, which also is fine.

Reading over my 2020 stats, I was reminded of my goals for 2021. Let’s see how I did.

  • get vaccinated (done!)
  • see a return to in-person races (yes!)
  • run more than 1500 miles (not quite!)
  • be consistent about strength training (mostly!)
  • train for a race (any race, it doesn’t matter the distance) (how about a marathon?)

So mostly pretty good! We did see a big return to in-person races. I trained for and ran a whole marathon, a thing I did not think would be possible a year ago.

My mileage didn’t hit my intended goal, but I blame a couple of down months where I didn’t/couldn’t run at all. If I had been healthy all year, I believe I could have hit 1500. This has been an unrealized goal of mine since 2017. I will continue the tradition and make this a goal for 2022.

Ways I Track Activity

I track my activity the same way I did in 2020:

  • Garmin: I replaced my Forerunner 630 with a 245 Music this past July. I loved my 630 but the battery was growing weaker and I had doubts it could last a full marathon. The 245 records my runs, steps, and sleep data, in addition to heart rate (which may or may not be super accurate) and things like respiration and VO2 Max. I also like the option of leaving my phone at home but still having music.
  • Strava: I still use Strava and have grown more attached to it this past year. My profile is still private – as much as I wish I could participate in “local legend” stats, it still feels weird to have any weirdo in the world be able to see where and when I run. Sorry, weirdos!
  • My own spreadsheet: I still track running and workout data on the same Excel spreadsheet since July 2018. I love my spreadsheet and updating it brings me pure, unadulterated joy. I also believe that having some kind of workout calendar is a great way to hold yourself accountable and serious about sticking to a schedule.
  • MapMyRun: I used to use MapMyRun all the time but don’t log in anymore. However, I visited it to get some of the following information.

In 2021, I:

  • ran 1,100.14 miles (2020: 557)
  • burned 108,033 calories running (2020: 57,414)
  • spent 173 hrs. 43 min. running (2020: 88h 48m)
  • ran 45,016 ft. of elevation gain (2020: 26,617)
  • ran 6 races (2020: 1)
  • did 115 upper body strength workouts (2020: 121)
  • did 45 lower body strength workouts (2020: 117)

I ran twice as much as I did in 2020. I also had a few foot issues, and while working on those, I didn’t do as much lower body strength work as I’m used to. Also, in 2020 I spent a lot of time not running which meant a lot of time strength training. So I don’t mind that drop.

Age Group Comparisons

There’s nothing better than age group comparisons in running, especially as you get older. As long as you maintain fitness, you’ll find yourself seeming faster and faster when compared to people your age. It’s one of the more fun aspects of aging.

In a typical year, running farther than 99% of women in my age group is normal for me (in 2020 it was only 90%, still not bad considering the year I had). In 2021, I also ran farther than every other age group. I honestly didn’t know I ran that much.

But only 95% when it came to how much time I spent running. (In 2020, this was 82%.) I assume this means I ran a little faster than most of my fellow 45-49 ladies.

Sure enough, I ran faster than 82% of women in my age group – same as in 2020! This surprises me, as I feel like I ran much faster in 2021 overall. Although, it’s safe to say, so did everyone else: 2020 was a strange year with hardly any racing or, I assume, running club speed workouts. I’m willing to bet everyone slowed down in 2020.

VO2 Max is a new stat for me, as I didn’t have this on my last watch. I only kind of pay attention to it. My VO2 Max is better than 80% of other women in my age group, which isn’t great but isn’t terrible. Like if I got an 80 on a test I wouldn’t be thrilled, but at least I didn’t fail?

I take more steps than 99% of my age group as well as every other age group, a relatively easy thing to achieve for anyone who lives in a big city and doesn’t own a car. This stat looks to be exactly the same as in 2020.

Finally, my sleep still averages seven hours a night, also not great but not terrible. Still amazed that some people appear to sleep for over 10 hours a night, although this could be a result of people taking off their Garmins at night so it appears as though they’re sleeping when they’re not. Otherwise… that’s a hell of a lot of time in bed.

In Conclusion

While I’m sure there’s more I could get into, I’ll end this for now! Although I do have a line graph from Excel I might add at some point… maybe some Strava charts.

2021 was an interesting year, filled with some negatives (periods of foot pain that caused me to stop running) and some positives (fixing some running mechanics I had been neglecting and running a sub-4 marathon). I’m confident I’m on a better path now than I was a year ago, and even two years ago. I have high hopes for 2022.

Do I dare write out my goals for 2022? Sure.

  • find a consistent source of income
  • run 1500 miles
  • race once a month
  • run a sub-1:42 half marathon
  • run a 5K or 10K PR
  • train consistently without pain
  • continue not to get covid-19
  • keep my dog alive

That’s it for now. Let’s all take a deep breath and see what 2022 brings.

Fine, here’s a Strava chart

More stats:





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