I will admit that I'm obsessed with numbers. This is why I run with a Garmin. And why I don't ever turn it off at stoplights because discovering a half a mile later that I forgot to turn it back on when the light turned green is disasterous for me. I should look into help, I know. My number obsession is also why I will run circles in the parking lot just to hit an even 7 miles for a run if I have to. Sure, 6.87 miles would be good enough, but I want that even number. I've noticed other runners in my group doing the same. It's a bit neurotic but that's what makes running (and runners!) so much fun.
I log all my runs -- from the 3 miles with the dogs to the 20+ miles during marathon training. All the numbers are accurately recorded and tallied by the year. It is why I can tell you 2007 was a bad running year for me due to my second pregnancy (only 168 miles total that year!). And why I can also say that this year, 2010, was my highest running year to date (going over 1200 -- whoo hoo!). I know because I have been logging all my runs since 2005 when I really started to care about seeing some improvement.
I also keep a spreadsheet of my races. I'm not ever going to win a race (or even come remotely close!) but I like to see how I've improved and what my previous times were for every distance I've raced. I can tell you with pinpoint accuracy what I ran at specific races, what those race distances were and the year.
All of this is why I love the end of the year. It's a time to reflect on what my running has been this year and where I want it to go in the coming year. I'm excited by improvement I've seen this year, some great running friends and where I see myself going in 2011. As always, I'm planning on faster miles and more total miles run, but also to continue this running journey that I love so much. I've learned a lot about myself this year and can't wait to see what happens in 2011.
What about you? Have I just described your number obsession, too?