Friday, January 23, 2009

fluke test

Guess what I'll be doing on Sunday, May 31, 2009?!

Yes, Gentle Readers, I've done it. As of today, I officially plan to run a second marathon, if only to ascertain that my successful completion of the first one in 2006 wasn't a fluke. Brad and I just registered to run the San Diego Rock 'n' Roll Marathon. San Diego is the one city in the country where I have visited, but Brad hasn't, and what better excuse for a vacation? As Brad says, it's exactly how he dreams of spending a vacation: running 26.2 miles (Ha!).

For over two years now, I have hungered, itched, yearned, wished, longed (get my point?) to run another marathon, which I promised myself that I would not do until I finished my Ph.D. (2007 - check!). I really wanted to embrace this challenge in 2008, but Brad wisely talked me out of it arguing that our busy travel schedule that year would certainly make training difficult and stressful. Of course, he was right.

But I have finally talked Brad into another marathon and I found a fun one that meets all of my minimum criteria:
  • Big race and lots of people.... I definitely need many other runners around me and a supportive crowd of fans.
  • Appealing location (San Diego, need I say more?) and a flat course
  • I desired a race during the first six months of 2009 simply so that I could train through the winter, which are my best running months. I definitely prefer cold weather running. I will take snow over heat any day (just when running, though, not any other time). I struggled through long runs of 15+ miles in the July, August, and September heat when we ran the Marine Corps Marathon in 2006 (although, of course, the MCM is very dear to my heart and I would love to run it again one day, along with the Chicago and NYC marathons, which are on my "must run" list, but also occur during the fall months).
  • The San Diego Marathon's big perk is that it's a Rock 'n' Roll race, so there should be a band at every mile, which will hopefully help me pass the time faster because Brad and I will NOT be running the entire race together this time. After MCM, we stopped running together because our paces are so different. I no longer slow him down and he no longer stresses me out by pressuring me to speed up.
  • A second perk of this race is its timing; I'll enter swimsuit season in marathon shape!
Although I'll be training in cooler weather, the only downside is that the temperature on race day will be warmer than I like: average of 60 degrees at the start and low 70s at the finish. For someone who doesn't sweat and is pretty much unable to release heat, these temperatures are NOT ideal. But, I'm prepared to run slowly and to dump water on my head at every single break station so that I can finish the race. Even running a late-fall marathon would in no way guarantee me cool weather on race day. Runners always gamble on the weather.

Gentle Readers, you will be subject to a few more running-related posts than normal over the next four months. When I start complaining about my loose (but hopefully not LOST) toenails, blistered and bleeding feet, sore muscles, strict sleeping and eating regimen, lost Saturdays due to long runs, and overall exhaustion, please don't hesitate to remind me that I not only VOLUNTEERED TO DO THIS, I DRAGGED BRAD DOWN WITH ME. I take complete responsibility for this decision.

After running the race on May 31st, Brad and I will spend our seventh wedding anniversary on June 1, 2009 basking in the glow of marathon completion and marital bliss. Oh, and also hobbling around and caring for each other's wounds. Now that's love.


Smiling Mama said...

Wow! Good luck. I'm so impressed!

Katie said...

San Diego is so gorgeous, you are going to love every minute running and relaxing there! How exciting!