I've also done NaNo before, even though I didn't win. I've been trying to recover my writing ability for over a year now, not counting the fanfiction I worked on during my senior year of college. (Since I did take about a year off.)
Also, I don't write for a living. My job deals with code, not words. This can be useful, as it means that my writing is clearly distinct from my job. I also have no need to publish for money at all, the only reason I want to publish is because a) it helps to reach a large audience and b) it's some amount of external justification that my work isn't crap.