Sunday, October 28, 2007

Another Year, Another Marathon

It was already late afternoon when I remembered where I was this time a year ago - running my 2nd marathon in Washington DC at the MCM. In about a month, I'll be running my 4th, and then hopefully 5th marathon next January, if all goes well. My training has finally hit the 20-mile mark, and I hit the road at 7:08 am this morning to begin that long, lonely, painful journey, while the rest of suburbia slept on.

It was comfortable enough that I wore shorts, but cool enough that I needed two layers up top. After my run, a shower, a half bagel, and a cup of hot chocolate, I crawled back in bed and pulled the covers over in order to warm up my core body temperature, something I had read about somewhere. I'm pretty sure I also fell asleep instantly.

This time last year was also my first RBF meetup, and what a fine group of distinguished runners it turned out to be, with (ladies first)
Bex, NBTR, Susie, Michelle, and bringing up the rear (but never in a race!) Peter and David. Peter ran NYC last year, and David will be running it next week!

Speaking of next week, while
Susan and David are traipsing around the 5 boroughs, I'll be doing my cut-back long run in the Dallas Running Club Half (previously simply known as "The Half", until half marathons started popping up all over the place, and you couldn't tell anyone you were running "The Half" without them asking you "yeah, but which one?"). After that, it's one more 20-miler and then the long awaited taper. I can't wait!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Heaven Help Me

In an instant, the tides have changed. The cool, crisp yet sunny fall weather has given way to overcast skies, wind, and rain.

Sunday was the last of the pleasant days, I'm afraid, and even that showed signs of change. I had read the night before of something called the Orionids, a meteor shower that peaks every year on Oct 21, near the constellation Orion. Since I've been running into (ha ha) this Orion dude a lot lately, I thought it would be a great opportunity to catch some falling stars. It was decidedly less exciting at 5:45 am Sunday morning, bleary eyed, trying to stay upright in a strong forceful wind that kicked up every fallen leaf and swayed trees back and forth all around me. I didn't see a single meteor, but I did do 13 miles before 8:00 am.

Monday brought more wind, plus rain. Maybe my mind is playing tricks on me, but I've started to feel a tickle in my throat and just a touch of stuffiness in my nose. In response, I've been loading up on juice and fluids, and regretting the number of times I've driven past the "flu shots available" signs without stopping. I've even given Airborne a try, which for me to do so means I'm desperate. I just don't want anything to interrupt my already irregular training! Tomorrow's 5-miler will be a game-day decision.

Lastly, I'm going to need help over the next few months. I received an email a while ago asking for volunteers to help with an upcoming race. Seemed like a good idea at the time and a chance to give something back to the running community. We just had our first meeting. Just about every volunteer is the head of a committee (seems like there are no committee members, just heads, hmmmm ...). Somehow, I ended up as the 5K Run for Hope committee "chair". This is for the MS Society. I'm half excited, half scared silly, and fully humbled by this. I've yet to determine exactly what needs to happen, but I suspect most of the hard work will be done by the local running store that handles a lot of these races. It's all for a good cause and should be a fun experience. If anyone wants to come along for the ride, there's plenty of room ... don't be shy now!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Keep On Truckin'

I've been in town for almost 2 weeks now - yay! In that time span, my beloved Longhorns have sunk into the toilet, leading to my new-found interest in them Cowboys, and I've been trying to keep up with running.

While some runs are still a struggle, there's more good runs than bad runs now, and I'm really happy about that. I was up to 18 miles last weekend for my long run, and it went easier than expected even if my time was off a bit at 3:15 and change.

Here's some good news I found today. I'm a big fan of GU, and totally won over by their Expresso Love flavor. New for the holidays ... Mint Chocolate.
I've got to get me some.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Is It Friday Yet?

I think I hit a new low this morning as I boarded my 6:50 am flight in Chicago, and it was already my 2nd flight of the day. I was in transit from Indianapolis to Washington DC, where I landed, went to the client, spent 2 hours enduring a royal a$$-chewing on behalf of the mother ship corporation, left, and flew back home. At least I can take comfort in knowing that the problems pre-dated my involvement, but being the person called upon to clean up someone else's mess didn't do much to make me less of an easy target.

My trips this week weren't all bad. I had an 8 mile EZ run on the schedule for Wednesday, and my hotel in Indianapolis came with a free pass to the gym next door. Since I neither own a treadmill nor belong to a gym, I rarely run on a treadmill, and completing 8 miles on one last night is probably an indoor distance record for me!

By the time I finished, I was famished. After a shower, I drove around looking for something reasonably acceptable and ended up at Panera Bread, where I had this conversation when placing my order:

Me: How big is this crispani thing?

She: Um, it's pretty big. I think it's enough to like feed 2 people.

Me: Oh (pause)

She: (sensing my hesitation) ... but I think you can probably finish it ...

Me: Actually, I was thinking it's not going to be enough!

I ended with a BBQ chicken crispani, a bowl of chicken noodle soup, and an ice tea. For the record, I couldn't finish the darn thing.