Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Keeping it Real

I was back out and running this morning following my 30K on Sunday. Nothing fancy, just another slow 7.4 mile trail run. Muscles felt ok, but the back side of my right knee hurt a little after 5 miles; all in all, a nice run.

Thomas asked an interesting question the other day, “Are you sure you're prepared for a marathon?”. On an existential level, I’ll never be ready for a marathon. There’s just too much to worry about. However, I don’t have to run to the perfect marathon to be happy. Too many of us get wrapped around the axle worrying about our next marathon. Will I PR? Will I break 4:00 (or 3:30 or 3:00 or …)? Will I hit the wall? Will I … Why do we do this to ourselves? Although it seems like everyone on the planet is running a marathon in the next 6 months, the fact still remains that only a small proportion of the population at large can run that far.

The Carlsbad Marathon is a few days shy of 4 weeks away. If I were on track, today I’d have run 8 miles with 5x600m at 6:50/mi pace; 11 miles on Wednesday; 4 miles on Friday; 15K at race pace on Saturday; and 17 miles on Sunday. Don’t think that’s going to happen. At best, I’ll run 35 to 45 miles at varying distances trying to stay at the edge of my aerobic range. At this point, I’m only trying to get my body ready to enjoy a 26.2 mile fully supported long run surrounded by great people in a gorgeous setting. I think I’ve gotten to the point were I’m just happy to be running, performance is secondary. Now don’t get me wrong, assuming I can avoid another serious injury, I fully expect to get back on an improvement path and exceed the targets set in 2006; but for now, I'm just happy to be alive.

On a lighter note, I’ve got a few photos from the 30K. By the way, for those interested, my final time was: 2:46:48 – Average pace: 8:57/mi

Sunrise over the first mile of the course

Some folks thought it was cold at check in

Water Station set up

I'm on the left side of this picture just past the 6 mile marker. The other 3 people in the picture passed me at the upcoming water station. Note that two of these folks are dressed as if they are running with Mike in Canada while I'm out for a run on Maui.

The leader cruising along after 13 miles

Coming back through the same water station on the return. Not looking at all relaxed.

Non-Running Pictures

For anyone interested in Toulouse, France (there may be one), the local newspaper collected a set of GOOGLE EARTH photos of some of the major sites around the town. I thought it was cool.



Anne said...

Look at all those intrusive traffic cones just taunting you! I like the action shots a lot.

Dusty said...

Great pictures! So beautiful!!

I'm one of those w/out a marathon on my schedule. :) I'm in awe of you all!

I'm glad your body is on the road to recovery - good sign that you didn't mention your feet! :)

J~mom said...

Great attitude, Phil!!

I love the pictures, I hope I have my mileage in place to do that run next year.

Michele said...

Wonderful pics.
I do think that some of us (me) forget that just running a marathon is a huge deal in and of itself. It does seem like EVERYONE is doing it, just finishing isn't such a big deal. Thanks for the reminder. I will remember that going into Birmingham in Feb.

Love2Run said...

I love that 1st picture! Makes me want to just fly down that road (avoiding the cones of course)! I had a similar thought like Thomas but have tried to be quiet. You need to work out your injury issues 1st and foremost.

Bex said...

Nice photos - they're very sharp! What were the temps that day? It's funny that the woman in the photo was wearing tights and a headband while you wore shorts and a singlet. I saw the same thing in Hawaii - where the marathon started in the lower 70's and reached the high 80's by mid-day. I was in a skirt and sleeveless top - but there were many Japanese in tights and a long-sleeved shirt.

By the way, you have wise words about just enjoying 26.2 miles and not be so obsessed all the time about reaching time goals. There will always be another race to break one's PR ....

Ewen said...

Running the perfect marathon is no easy task!

I like your relaxed attitude to this one Phil. With one more long run I'd say you've done enough to get to the finish. For this one, you've a bit like a mate of mine, Plu, who ran the Gold Coast marathon off about 25k a week and no long runs. He still enjoyed it.

Thanks for the photos - even the leader thought the weather was a tad cool!

Addy said...

A belated congrats on that 30k! what a beautiful place and what an awesome time :) You're amazing!

Josh said...

Love those photos!