When planning for your running future, try picking a goal that looks beyond just the next race. “If you’re just looking at lots of short cycles, it’s hard to reach your potential,” says Jess Cover, a running coach at On Track Performance Coaching in Burlington, Vermont.
You can lose motivation once you hit a short-term goal, letting the fitness you’ve built lapse. Or you can train or race too much, burning out before you peak. By setting your sights on a macro-goal in the future, you can string together shorter training cycles and smaller victories in a way that builds toward a big win.
Runner’s World compiled a guide to pick and train for a worthy goal that is six, nine, or 12 months out.