2 On The Mill

Well, after a weeks hiatus I am slowly getting back into this. I got up at 4:30 this morning instead of 4:05 but I felt good and felt like I got a good nights sleep. I still am working a lot and will be for the next week or two. Things are going good with the project though so my spirits are up.

I wanted to go for a run today when I went to bed last night, but it was going to be really cold and really windy and so was not very appealing to kick it back off on a morning like today. I then opted to get up and get to the gym and do some weights since I have taken the week off with that as well.

I had a good weight lifting session and felt full of energy, which was nice. I did want to run though so I cut my weight training a little short and headed over to the Dreadmill. I put in a couple miles, and for the Dreadmill they were good miles too, at a 9:18 pace. I felt strong and felt like I could keep going, I was just out of time..... plus - talk about boring! I don't know how you guys (Jim!) do 7 miles! I guess if I had a TV I could, but without that it is just too boring!

This was an important run to me. Even though it has only been 1 week, I still always wonder - is it going to be too hard - am I going to get discouraged - I can't run this far - how in the heck did I ever run a Half Marathon! But, as was proven today, I can take a week off and it won't hurt me, in fact in this case I think it did me a world of good and kept me from getting sick. Our bodies need rest and recovery time - note to self - Our bodies need rest and recovery time - have I ever said this before? - Our bodies need rest and recovery time!

Till next time - See you on the road!

Starting to feel better

I am starting to feel a little better following my last post of lack of energy. I have still been working almost every waking hour, but have been resting and sleeping a little later. It is absolutely killing me to not be running though :)

I did get out for 1 mile on Saturday with my daughter, and then another 1.25 walk/run with my son. I can't let these times go. :)

I will probably get out and do a couple miles a couple times in the next few days, however I am not going to be able to run this coming Saturday as we are taking a road trip to Savanna, GA. My wife's brother is stationed there while he is getting ready to go back to Iraq, and this Saturday is when he gets released for his last few days of freedom before he gets shipped out in the next few weeks. This is his second tour of duty in Iraq, the first time was when the war started. His wife and kids are coming down from Indiana Friday and we are making the journey to Savanna Saturday morning.

Well, enough for today. Got to get to work - still a lot of work on my projects, although it is going good. Hopefully I will be back to where I was running in the next couple weeks. :)

Lack of Energy

This is cross posted on my other blog at blog.2big.org

No, I am not making the statement because I am confused why, I am making the statement just because I am tired. I have a terrible lack of energy.

This morning I was at the gym and just couldn't seem to get much done. I started to lift my normal routine and just couldn't seem to get through it. I finally gave up and went and walked on the treadmill to try to awaken my body. I went back to the weights and after just one more set gave up and came home.

This week my runs have also been tiresome with lack of energy as well. I originally figured that I was seeing the results of pushing my body so hard in my half marathon this past week, but figured that would be subsiding by now.

Like I said, it is no surprise that I have no energy. I have been getting up and 4:05 AM each morning, running or working out, going to work and working 9 and 10 hour days, coming home, taking care of some household business (running the kids here or there) and then working 2 - 4 more hours before going to bed between 10:30 and 11:00. All to do it all over the next day.

Now, many of you might laugh at me and say "You call that work?" I am an Application Developer so yes, work for me is sitting in front of the computer all day. Not much of a physical activity, but unless you have worked in front of the computer all day, you would never understand how physically draining it is. I am sure the mental part of it is what drains you physically, but it is tiring none the less.

I have a hugh project that is coming due, that I have a lot of work left on. I had a mini due date this past Tuesday, then another bigger due date today. I have one of the main due dates on Monday which is going to be tough, and then it is roll out of the application from there. All while continuing to work on back end stuff. To say the least I am stressed.

To add to all this, I think my body is reacting from a weight loss standpoint. I have not seen any weight loss over the past couple weeks while I have been going through all this. I am not eating as good as I could be, but I am not eating bad enough that I shouldn't be losing weight either. I think it is my body just telling me that I am not getting enough rest. I wish I could respond to it and give it the rest it needs, but it will have to wait till after these deadlines.

The First 2 Miles

The first two miles always seem to be a struggle to me. I know it is not physical, but it sure is mental. I take off, and it doesn't matter how far I am going I don't think I can do it. After the first mile it gets a little better, but I don't get completely past that mental block until I hit two miles.

This morning was no different, that first mile seemed to drag by, then the second mile got a little better. It is magical, once I passed the second mile I was confident I could go as far as I needed to. This mornings run was a 4 mile run. My run this morning went well, I just didn't feel like I had a lot of energy. I am thinking this is due to the added stress lately at work and the 10-12 hour days I have been putting in. Hopefully that will subside in the next couple weeks.

Following my Half Marathon on Saturday, I went for a 1 mile run with my daughter, Payton on Sunday. I was hurting pretty bad and it took everything I had to get moving. Once I got moving I was in pain but I was fine. I couldn't pass up the opportunity to run with her, like I have so many times in the past. Following our 1 mile I went back out with my son, Brady for just over 1 mile of a walk/run. This was another nice time like the week before.

I took the next two days off to let my body recover and also because my ankle was starting to hurt again. I decided I would not put even one more mile in with my shoes. Tuesday evening I went and awarded myself with a new pair of shoes. I think I am also going to get a second pair of shoes as well so I can alternate between the two and see which ones I like better. I will let you know more about my shoes soon, and keep you posted on how I like the two shoes.

Well, I need to find myself a 10k to run in the next few weeks. I need to get a seeding time before March 16th so when I register for the 65,000 strong Peachtree Road Race I don't get so far back in the pack like last year that it takes me 45 minutes to cross the starting line. There is one this Saturday but I am just not sure that I want to do another race so soon.

Until next time...... thanks for following my Quest to a Marathon!

First Half Marathon - 1:55:46

OK, that is not the official time, but I started my watch when the gun went off, even though it took me about 20 seconds to get over the line. There is still a lot up in the air, but as you will see in the picture that yes in fact that is me (in the white and black) crossing the finish line, and there is the clock..... what more can I say? Whoooooo Hoooooo!!! (OK, so you can't quite tell? Click the picture I uploaded it in full size so there would be no question) I will put a picture up in a little bit when I was walking out the door so you can see the same black and white - that will be proof for sure since nobody else wears white and black.

First off, I have to start with the weather, we couldn't have asked for better weather. It was a little humid but you couldn't tell because with the 50 degrees and cloudy skies it was just perfect.

I started the morning at 6:00 AM, that is one of the good parts to a local race, I didn't have to sleep in a hotel, or get up really early to drive. The drive took me about 5 minutes.

I had a cup of coffee, a half a banana, half a piece of wheat bread, and a small cup of Oatmeal..... oh yea, and some more water.... like I haven't drank enough of that over the past 24 hours!

My wife got up to give me a good luck kiss, even though she is not a morning person. She decided that she and the kids would get there to watch me finish since it wouldn't be a whole lot of fun to see me stand in a pack and then have to find something for she and the kids to do for ALMOST two hours.... not two hours - but ALMOST two hours. :) She took a picture of me as I was headed out the door. Watch on arm, cell phone and license on my arm, and gu in my pockets. I was ready to run!

The other beauty of a local race was that it didn't take long for me to find some people I knew. This helped me pass the hour wait I had till running time. Some of them were running the shorter races, but at least two people I knew were also running the half.

Well, to get this part out of the way since I am SOOOOOO excited and thankful for this. My ankle didn't give me one bit of trouble, not even a twinge the entire time!!!! Not a peep from the legs, ankles, or feet the entire race other than being just flat worn out in the last few miles.

I started the race back in the pack a little bit trying to force myself to take off slower. Well, that was my first mistake. It took me quite a bit of dodging to get around the slower runners which was quite frustrating. The first mile I felt like I was crawling, I was just sure I was going to see at least a 10 minute pace by the end of the first mile. Imagine my surprise when the watch said 8:20, and that was with 20 seconds to cross the starting line. CRAP! I did what I didn't want to do, I started too fast! Well, the past is the past and I did my best to just try to get into a comfortable cruising speed that I could maintain throughout. I just kept at what I thought was a comfortable pace, and the second mile came in at 8:11. Now I knew my body was just messing with me and was going to get the good laugh at the 10-13 mile mark.

I continued on with the first half of the race and felt really good, I opted for water at all the stops that I took anything. I used my first gu at about mile 5 1/2 as I was coming up on the water stop. My first 6 miles had been at an 8:30 pace, a full 30 seconds faster than what I was shooting for.... but I still felt good. I knew I would pay for it at the end of the race though.

I made the half way turn and knew I was under an hour, not just under an hour, but well under an hour. I was elated! I used my second gu about mile 9, and things were still going good. My pace started to decrease in mile 10 as I figured it would since I had not run the first half where I should have. It was closer to the pace where I needed to be for the Sub 2 so I knew it was still well within line of my goal.

Mile 11 was a difficult mile, it was one of the three hills that were the worst of the entire race. These were the hills everyone was talking about. They don't seem near as bad when you drive them... go figure.

Mile 12, and mile 13 absolutely killed me. After running the race I had so far I was not ready for the hills in these two miles. I ended up having to mostly walk up the 2 hills, one in each of the last two miles. I just didn't have enough to get me to run those two hills. I guess this is why everyone I talked to that had run it before had told me it was a difficult course and that the hills were a killer..... because they were! I didn't recognize any of the other hills, they were there but didn't bother me, but these last three were enough to do me in. My pace showed it in these last two miles especially where they were 10:11 and 9:53 respectively. Now, does it bother me that I had to walk these hills? A little, but not enough to keep me from being elated and wearing my medal with honor!

Coming up over the hill they threw me for a loop. I saw the starting line and was excited, it is almost over! Well, at the beginning of the race the start/finish line were at the same place. But once the Half Marathon and 10k were run they got it ready for the 5k. To do this they had to move the starting line up. So, when I saw the starting line and was happy I was almost done, I found out that they had moved it and I still had another .2 to go.

My legs were tired and felt like jelly, but as far as pain the only pain was pain of actually running a half marathon, not of injury. Muscle pain feels good after a good hard run!

At the finish line, my wife, and kids were there to cheer me on. They brought me a towel and my son gave me a hug. My wife and daughters pulled away when I tried to give them a hug. When I got back to my car I noticed I had a little bleeding as is common amongst us men with perky and well defined pectoral muscles - how do you like that explanation? :) When I got home my one daughter said - yea I noticed that but I didn't want to say anything because other people were around. :) I am happy to say as I sit here typing the worst pain I am experiencing is pain from my nipples :)

Well, that is the story of my First Half Marathon...... and I am pumped!

My splits can be found on my log

Update: The official results are in. The results on their website and active.com point to the 2007 results so I am not sure when that will be fixed. The race results for the men were in the Gwinnett Daily Post this morning and show me at 1:55:48 and 186 out of 280 men, and 242 out of 448 total finishers. I was 32 in my age group.

The day

Well, the day has arrived. The day that I have been dreaming about for years, and training for for many months. If you would have told me a year ago that I would have been here today even running the 10k I wouldn't have believed you, much less the half marathon!

One year ago today I weighed in at 242 lbs, not my highest at 258 at the beginning, but still way too overweight. Today, my official race day weigh in is 172 lbs. Not quite where the guy in the picture is but I am well on my way.

Pray that my ankle holds out, and that I too hold out. I will catch back up sometime after the race. Race time is 8:00 AM, and I plan to finish just BEFORE 10:00AM :)

Thanks all for your support along the way! Without the support it would have been a much harder road to run. :)

And a good luck also goes out to Marion who is running her first Marathon today in Myrtle Beach, the Myrtle Beach Marathon. She will be already running by the time I leave the house. Good luck Marion!! Her blog is at shutitandrun.blogspot.com.

The signs have shown up

Yes, that was the sign I was waiting for! They finally put it up today. This is the sign they put up at all the on-ramps to the Ronald Reagan Parkway a few days before they close it for the Run The Reagan.

I have watched this sign go up in years past, and just got aggravated because I was going to have to take alternate routes on that Saturday. I could never believe they would close this major road just so some runners, walkers, and bikers could use it for the day. What an inconvenience to the rest of us! Now, I am on the other side, one of those that will be using it so they have to close it!

Just another sign (literally) that the race is nearing. Man, even though I am stressed (just put in a 12 hour day) and worried about my ankle, I am absolutely pumped about this Saturday! It can't get here soon enough! I just hope it doesn't take me till 7:00 pm to finish the race.... considering it starts at 8:00 am :)

Stress is a four letter word

OK, stress isn't a four letter word, but it is not one of my favorite words right now either. However, My life right now could have a little less of it right now.

Work is really stressful right now as I have a big project that I have been working on for months that is due on Monday. I am a Application Developer and my life has been wrapped up in this current application while trying to learn a new technology to complete it. Needless to say this has caused a lot of delays, and stress. I have been working most nights, in addition to all day every day, including some weekends over the past couple weeks. This weekend will be one of those weekends that will require work as well.

Now enter race weekend. I am not sure how things work out the way they do sometimes, and why everything has to hit at the same time, but I guess it is to make us stronger. I had a very good run this past Sunday, and was feeling really good about this coming Saturday's race. Tuesday I went out for my 4 miler, and things seemed to go OK, but the first mile my ankle was bothering me a little bit. Not bad like last time, and it didn't bother me at all the rest of the run. However, it is feeling a bit weak still this morning. I am stretching and icing, and it doesn't feel horrible, but I am concerned.... and yes stressed on how it will hold up this Saturday.

Yes, I am fairly confident that this ankle pain is a result of me not replacing my shoes yet. I know I have too many miles on my shoes (based on recommendations) but I didn't have the extra $ back a month ago when I realized this, and by the time I got the $ it was too close to race day to try and switch to new shoes. I think I am paying for that now, when in fact I should have literally paid for them back a month ago. I know there is nothing I can do about this now, but I know what I will be doing once I get through the race this Saturday. So, now I am wondering..... do I run my last 4 miles on Thursday, or do I let my ankle rest till race time....... Hmmmmm, not sure what I should do.

Yes, I am getting the pre-race jitters. Everything is not going bad, but the stress at work with this new stress of my ankle acting up has got my head spinning. On a brighter note, the forecast has again changed and shows the rain holding off until Sunday. I think we are close enough now that this will probably not change too much, so I am happy about that. The forecast is calling for cloudy and 63 with 20% chance of precipitation. I don't think it could be much better than that. So what is the ankle forecast? I won't know till race day... :(

**Edit** I wanted to edit this post and include a picture of my shoes. I am not sure what they looked like when they were new, but they look like they are slanting to the outside. Based on the wear on the bottom of the shoes that is where the wear is also. I am sure this means they are way overdue for replacement, I just didn't realize they were this bad. I have probably close to 450 miles on them. I have logged 325 miles, and I trained for and ran a 5k and 10k before I started logging. I am sure based on how they look that they are the reason for my ankle problems and probably all the other little aches and pains I have been having recently. If only I would have done what I knew I should have done a month ago. :(

4 Down - 4 To Go

4 miles down, only 4 more training miles to go before race day. I put my 4 easy miles in this morning and it was a really good run. I tried something a little different this morning.

I usually don't eat anything before running in the morning, but have noticed lately that I do much better when I run in the afternoon a couple hours after eating. Most of my races have been in the morning so I have not eaten anything, but I have had a couple afternoon/evening races over the past couple months and I have always done better and felt like I had more energy. I always thought that I didn't do as well in the morning because it was dark, but I am now beginning to wonder if it doesn't have more to do with fuel.

This morning I got up at 4:05 (something magic about those extra 5 minutes) and made myself some oatmeal. Quaker Oatmeal, not instant oatmeal. I ate about 1/4 cup and then waited an hour before going out for my run. I was apprehensive because I too many times have run with too much on my stomach. The run went really good, my stomach felt good, and I do feel like I had more energy. I am going to play around with this a bit to see what I can do.

As for this Saturday, I will eat something, but I will be up at least 2 hours before race time so that won't be an issue. I will probably just have some oatmeal and maybe a banana. They are now again saying that we are supposed to have rain Saturday. We will see, I will take whatever the good Lord gives me and make the best of it :)

The Last Eight

Well, OK, not the last, but the last eight mile long run before my Half Marathon this Saturday. I will be putting in a 4 miler on Tuesday and then another 3 or 4 miler on Thursday.

I was going to post this earlier, but we took advantage of the gorgeous day and went to the park to fly kites and toss around a baseball a bit as a family. When we got there we couldn't fly our cheap kites because it was too windy. Who has ever heard of it being too windy to fly a kite? At wind gusts upwards of 22-35 mph, and probably even higher in the open fields at the park, it just wasn't going to happen.

I have not run on Sunday in a really long time, and have never run my long run on Sunday before. Today turned out to be my long run day because of my messed up schedule this past week due to being sick.

I set out for my 8 miler figuring I would try to run the 8 mile at where I wanted to be for a pace on race day. I know, I should have done this long ago, but this is my first time, and I really honestly didn't think about it. I never worry about pace running with the shorter distances, because if I go out to fast the race is over soon enough.... not so with 13.1 miles!

The weather was gorgeous at 61 degrees, and sunny, but it was very windy. This is the first time I have had to deal with this much wind where it actually affected my run, but I am glad because they say that the Reagan is really windy. It was gusts up to 22-35 mph according to www.weather.com. It was so windy the headwinds even messed up MY hair!

I took off for the first mile at about where I wanted to be, but then the next couple miles I was faster than where I wanted to be. Overall I pushed myself hard, and know that if I take off like I did today that I will not be able to maintain it too far past the 8 mile mark. If I slow it down a tad and everything goes well on race day I think I have a chance at a sub 2 Half Marathon which would be AWESOME!

My splits can always be found at www.runningahead.com when I take that watch with me, todays splits can be found here.

I was so happy with todays run, it gave me a lot of confidence. I ran the best 8 miles of my life at an 8:44 pace, and I still had more to give at the end. Probably not at that pace, but if I can keep my pace right at 9:00 or 9:10 for the 13 then I will be absolutely thrilled. That extra .1 can go at a 10:00 pace for all I care, but when I see that finish line it will probably be at a 7:30 pace if I still have it left in me :)

I got home from my race and sat down to log my time at www.runningahead.com and I checked my feeds to find that Marion over at her blog Shut it and Run had just posted her 8 mile run at almost 3 minutes better than mine. She did an awesome job, and she is still sick to boot! I gave her a hard time in her comments, but I do have to say that I am honored to come that close to someone that is in such better physical shape than I am in! Her being sick and the wind she had to deal with gave me a chance to shine in comparison! I will take it any way I can! :) She is running the Myrtle Beach Marathon this coming Saturday. Go Marion!!

OK, I know you can find them on my log at Running Ahead, but I got to list them...... I am soooooo proud. :)

Mile 1: 8:54
Mile 2: 8:37
Mile 3: 8:21
Mile 4: 9:05
Mile 5: 8:42
Mile 6: 8:53
Mile 7: 8:42
Mile 8: 8:30

Mile 1 pace is where I should have stayed throughout, and is still about where I want to be for the 13.1. Mile 4 is a steady climb throughout most of the mile, and mile 6 was one of the places that the wind blew my hair a bit too much! :)

Thanks for reading!

oh.... and today's run ALMOST caught me back up to the 1,000 mile pace bunny. I am down by .2 miles as of this posting.

Running with my kids

Today marks the official one week count-down to my First Half Marathon. I am really excited and looking forward to it. I know I am ready, the question is just how ready, how fast, and how comfortable will it be.

As of yesterday I looked at the 10 day forecast and they said it was going to be in the 50's with a 60% chance of rain. Since it was the 10 day forecast I didn't worry too much. I just checked and now it is saying 60's, and the rain isn't supposed to be here till Sunday.

This past week my running has been way off schedule. I started the week on Monday with a 4 mile run, which went good but made it very obvious that I was catching the cold that was going through the house. I started to panic, because the last time I got sick, I got really sick, and I was less than two weeks from race day. I took the next three days off, and started medications to try and give my body the extra energy to heal and get past this cold without it getting worse. The rest paid off and by Thursday I was feeling much better. I didn't run again till Friday when I put a 4 miler in. My normal long run is Saturday, which is today, but since I just ran yesterday I am not going to do my long run till tomorrow. I only plan on doing 8 miles since I am kinda in a taper for my first half marathon.

Today, because it is not really a running day, and because I have put it off so long, I decided to go for a run with two of my kids.

My 12 year old daughter likes to run, and is a good runner. I have run with her a couple times in the past, but because Saturdays are my long run days I have neglected to keep up with this. I made the decision last week, that I could not continue to let this slide, and that I would make time, even if it meant that my goals took a little longer. These times with my daughter are so special, and I have been letting them slide. I keep telling her that if she likes to run, and she runs now that she will have such an opportunity to really shine in Cross Country and Track when she gets to High School. I need to be there to run with her, instead of just giving it lip service.

My oldest daughter, who is 14 has no desire whatsoever to run, so I don't even talk about it to her, other than asking every so often to make sure she doesn't change her mind. My 6 year old son on the other hand does have an interest, but I have not taken him out enough either. When he runs we run for about 50 yards and then he tells me it is time to walk. We walk for about 100 yards and then he is ready to run again. It is so special, but I again have not taken the time to nurture this. Today this all is changing.

I started off with my daughter and we ran a mile in 9:15. I then went back out with my son and daughter, and we went just over a mile with our walk/run plan. I am going to make it a point to take them out as much as possible, and will look forward to the day that I can watch them run a race, or even the day that I can run a race with them.

I am still working on my wife :)

Finally Did It

Yea, I know what you are thinking...... it is about time!

I finally signed up for my Half Marathon next Saturday, the Run the Reagan Funny thing, I felt it necessary to sign up for the half-marathon coaching program - 1 week before race day - you think they can help me? :)

No, I didn't put it off because I wasn't planning on doing it, I put it off because I just was unsure about injury or something along that lines. I wasn't concerned about not being fit enough, because I always knew I would make it.

Last July I pulled a muscle that put me out for almost 3 months. Since I am really still trying to build my base I have felt small issues all along the way, and have been concerned about injuring myself again. I just didn't want to fork over the money (yes, I am tight) and then find that something was going to happen that would put me out of commission.

I was going to sign up after my last long run on Saturday, but then I started feeling this cold come on, and I had seen what it did to my son and then my wife...... so I got nervous. Well, I have taken the last 3 days off and slept a little later to try and give my body everything it needed to fight this cold in hopes that I could squeak by it instead of letting it settle in for a unwanted visit. I think that has paid off, because each day now I am feeling better.

I will be going for a run tomorrow (yea, I hate it when my schedule gets screwed up!!) and will see how that goes. I may just go for 3, but maybe up to 6 depending on how I feel.

Wish me luck!! and continue to pray for my body to completely heal! Thanks!

Yes, I am obsessed

Today was an unwanted day of rest. No, I didn't oversleep, and no I didn't injure myself. My son was sick last week, and my wife is currently sick, and yes, I am catching that bug...... with less than two weeks to race day!

I noticed that I was starting to catch this bug on Sunday. I woke up at my normal time and ran my scheduled 4 miles yesterday morning. My chest burned for the first mile of my run, but after that felt fine. Throughout the day yesterday it was painfully apparent that this bug had found me. All kinds of precautions had not been enough, so now I find myself in combat mode. So, on to why today is a rest day....

I fought with this notion last night that maybe I should just take today off, and sleep in a little bit, and let my body rest so my body had some extra energy to fight this bug. I quickly shut that down, and set out all my stuff for my scheduled 4 miles this morning. How could I let a little stuffy nose stop me from getting my 4 miles in? Yes, I confess, I am obsessed.

Well, morning came, and so did the 4:10 alarm clock. I started to get up and get ready for the run when I thought... what am I trying to prove? If my body needs a little rest, why not give it to it? I am completely ready for this race, taking a day off will not hurt me at all, and I am sick! I changed the alarm to 5:15 and went back to sleep..... or I tried. Yes, I did get another hour of rest, although I laid there half asleep thinking I should have gotten up and gone running. Yes, I am obsessed. I know it was the right thing to do, but it was so hard to do.

I am now trying to think of anything I can do to get this cold out of my system before it turns into a sinus infection. With less than two weeks to race day, this is going to be a challenge. I have been looking forward and training for this race for so long to end up not being able to run it because I am sick.

Fast Recovery &Thinking About Race Day

Following all my previous runs of longer than 8 miles I was always hurting the following bad quite a bit. The muscle soreness felt good, but was always making itself well known. I know this was because I was going distances that I had not previously gone so I knew to expect it.

Well, today I woke up, somewhat expecting that same soreness, but I had no signs of putting in 12 miles yesterday. I guess that I am starting to reap the benefits of the miles I am putting in and the distances I am putting in. Since this was 12 miles, and I have done 13, and 14 on other occasions, this is telling me that my legs are starting to get used to these distances. I am sure on race day that will all change :) but that is to be expected.

I am really starting to think about race day a lot more now. I want to push myself but I don't want to overdo it at the beginning and cause myself to pay for it in the end. I really don't know what to do, it is different than any smaller race where if you mess up and go out to hard you only have to pay for it for a few miles, nothing like 13.1. I really would like to hit the sub 2 hours, but I am trying to keep myself convinced that this is my first, and just crossing the finish line will be a great reward itself.

The Tortoise - A Long Run Account

This mornings 12 mile run has helped me blow past the 1,000 mile pace bunny. I have him by 4.7 miles now. Hopefully I can maintain, but it may take a couple weeks of back and forth with him. You know for the tortoise they say - slow and steady wins the race, well in my case slow and steady........ Finishes the race.

This mornings
12 mile run was a real test run for me as earlier this week my ankle hurt really bad, bad enough to have to stop my run at just 1 mile and walk back. My other runs this week went good so I was confident that this one would as well.

I started the run off intentionally slower because the last long runs at 12 and above I took off too fast and paid for it near the end. After starting slow I had hoped to stay strong throughout and speed up as I was feeling better, but I then could not speed up like I wanted to. My legs felt good throughout, and were not what held me back as in previous long runs. Today I think what held me back is that I think I am getting sick. My little boy has been home from school all week, and now my wife is sick. My heart rate was unusually high for the 10:19 pace I was running at and I just didn't feel at my best.

This was my last long run at this distance prior to my first Half Marathon, the Run The Reagan on February 16th. Next Saturday will be an 8 miler as I get ready for my race the following week.

As well as posting an 80 mile month for January, I have all just finished my longest distance week to date at 23.3 miles. Not much for many of you, but an inch above my last best week so I am happy.

Rain Glorious Rain

Down here in Georgia where the bread and soup lines are getting ready to turn into drinking water lines, it is a wonderful morning when you wake up to the pitter patter of a good rainfall on the skylight.

A good rainfall is a welcome commodity, but couple that with 37 degrees and I am overjoyed..... overjoyed that this morning is not a running morning!

There still was a smile on my face as I dressed for success (shorts and a t-shirt) and headed out the door to go to the gym for a good workout. It was amazing to see the added bodies occupying the treadmills as it looks like others were happy to see the rain.... just not on their running morning. :)