Just in the Nick of Time

Though there were many bumps along the road, and with a few shortcuts by reading more YA than usual this year, as of noon on New Year’s Eve, I managed to complete my GoodReads 2011 Reading Challenge.

I was worried for a while, but thanks to the Chicago Public Library; my favorite used bookstore  — Open Books; and reading free books on my iPhone, I was able to read 50 books this year and reach my goal!

As for next year, I’d like to focus more on quality over quantity. I hope to read more of those books I “should” have read years ago, books that I’ve been putting off reading because they’re so long or meaty, and books that will challenge me more.

But as for today, I’m off to celebrate a year full of accomplishments.

I did it!

More Stuff About Running

If you’ve seen my post from a few weeks ago, you know that I have caught a bit of the running bug. Or, as some people see it, I’ve officially lost my mind.

I’ve registered myself for not only another half, but also the Disney World Marathon. I know, I know, I said I had no desire to run a full marathon. But, I guess I just want to do it once, and I could think of no better place than in Disney World. (That, and I know that if I did the Disney Half, I’d only be disappointed I didn’t get the Mickey Medal, and I’d end up having to go back down to Orlando and do it all over again.)

I’m actually pretty excited about it. What I’m not excited about is training for the next 3 months, outdoors, during the Chicago winter. But worst case scenario, if I have to walk some of the race, I can. They give you 7 hours to finish, and my Chicago Half finishing time actually qualifies me for a starting corral. So, I get the impression that it’s a little less competitive than some of the other marathons. (That said, I still want/need to take my training seriously. 26.2 miles is a long freakin’ way!)

And speaking of finishing times, I’m still working toward another item on my list – to finish a 5K in under 30 minutes. To date, my personal best is 31:47, which I achieved back in June. I’m running in the Bucktown 5K tomorrow, and I’m going to see what I can do. I’m not too confident that tomorrow will be the day. I haven’t been working with my speed too much, and the cold air has really been bothering my lungs. But cross your fingers for me and check back later to see the results.

As for non-running related things…I’m still plugging away on my 50 Books in a Year goal, but I’ve hit some stumbling blocks there, too. Due to stress, headaches, and a more crowded morning commute, my reading time has decreased significantly and I’ve been stuck on book #35 for a few weeks now.

My goal is to spend a few hours reading today and finish this thing so I can move on. That will leave me with 15 books for the remaining 13 weeks in the year. Totally manageable.

So, reading and running. Those are the goals for the fall. And maybe a few other surprises as well.

Two Books in a Day

Today I finished a book I started last week, AND I started and finished an entire second book!

That nagging Goodreads reminder that I was 4 books behind target was making me restless, and I needed to do something about it.

So now, blurry-eyed from nearly 3 hours of straight reading, I am proud to say I’m only 2 books (5%) behind schedule.

Maybe I can finish one more by the end of the month and almost be back on track for June.

I don’t always accomplish everything I set out to do.

One of the items on my list that I am/was planning on completing this year as part of my 12 Things in 2011, was to read 50 books in a year.

This isn’t exactly a difficult task, but it is a challenge. And it’s a unique one. With some of my other challenges (like my scarf, for example), if I procrastinate on it, I can always pick it up some other time, finish it, and cross it off. But with reading 50 books in a year, if I don’t accomplish it by the end of the year, I have to start all over again. Even if I’m one book short, it was all in vain.

So, when I logged into Goodreads today, I felt a huge pang of guilt when I saw this ever-so-helpful reminder:

I realize it’s only May and I have plenty of time to catch up. And I may be adding some more YA books to the mix to help me pick up the pace. But, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t getting a bit panicky. I really want this to be the year of 50 books!

50 Books in a Year

I love to read and keep track of what I’ve read. I’ve kept a list of every book I’ve read since I was in college, and more recently I’ve gone digital with my list thanks to Goodreads.

This year Goodreads has launched their Reading Challenge, so I thought that it would be the perfect time to try to tackle one of my personal goals of reading 50 books in a year. (I read 32 last year.)

I’ve been kind of slacking in the reading category lately, so I’ll have to step it up. But you can track my progress here, or on Goodreads!

2011 Reading Challenge

2011 Reading Challenge
Caryhasread 37 books toward her goal of 50 books.