Saturday, January 8, 2011

First step

So last week, while I was off work, I decided that I couldn't take the inside of my house anymore and went for an all-day run. What a great idea! I started out from my house around 9 with only a general idea of where I would go. I took my ID and a credit card so I could stop and grab lunch somewhere that allowed sweaty, stinky runners in the door.

I stopped at Starbucks along the way and had my morning coffee which I had iced because I wasn't sure I could stomach anything hot.

It was a beautiful sunny day and I trotted through traffic up to Lake Hefner. I had NPR playing in my ears so I could get caught up on the news I had been ignoring for many weeks. Somewhere around the dam I realized I'd heard the same news story 3 times and took the headphones off.

Lunch turned out to be a stop at the 7-Eleven for some Cheese-Its and a bottle of water. I always find my mid-run cravings funny. I NEVER eat Cheese-Its, ever. I don't like them. But for some reason on mile 13 of that run Cheese-Its were all I ever wanted in life. They tasted great then even if the thought of it makes me hurl now. Oh well, just another reason to refer to myself in the third person. Even I don't understand me.

Somewhere along the way I got myself back in order and overcame the horrible stir-craziness that I had gotten myself into after being off work for 2 weeks. Running is good for that. Oh yea, I also hurt my knee somewhere. Yes, that's right, I'm injured now. Hear that screaming? Me neither because I didn't (and still don't) really care. That long run did me good and if I have to be injured because of it I'll take it. Besides, it's just a pain behind my kneecap, I've had that before and I'm confident I know how to get rid of it. This may make me a seasoned, i.e. old, runner. Either way I think I like it.

Thanks for listening

Saturday, January 1, 2011

What I (still) love about running

I'm not the same person that you met a few years ago when you started writing this blog. Am I better or worse? I don't know and I don't think I get to make that determination anyway. Life happens. It just does. Sometimes I can proactively drive what happens in my life and sometimes I'm the passenger strapped into the roller coaster holding on for dear life. So how can I say that I'm better or worse? I'm just older and different.

I still love to run. When I stumble upon a few spare hours during the week my first option is still to go for a run. It's the starting and ending point of most things I do during a week, month, even year. My running goals have changed, sometimes even disappeared, but the desire to push myself beyond what I think I can do on a given day is still there. Running make me, well, me!

I have been a bit of a lethargic runner lately, however. Getting other parts of my life settled had taken priority over PRs and distance goals. I think I'm ready to end that now and take a swipe at some of those mountains out there.

So I searched around that old area of my brain that contains the things I've always wanted to do and stumbled upon something that I think is achievable in 2011. Lest you think Willie actually had his first original thought, let me tell you that I was inspired to think about this goal by a very close friend who let me know it's a FANTASTIC idea.

I'd like to run 12 marathons in 2011. Yep, that's it, 12 marathons, 1 per month in 2011. I chose this goal mainly because I remember 2008 when I ran 8 marathons and how wonderful it felt to just get out and run that many races with that many different people. That year of traveling and running led to so many wonderfully unplanned things that I can't even count them. So who knows what running 12 will bring me.

I'm still working on the schedule but I've got the first few month pretty well settled.

On January 30th I'll run the Miracle Match Marathon in Waco Texas. I've never run this one and it's close.

On February 20th I'll run the Austin Marathon again because, well, it's Austin and I LOVE 6th street for post-race celebration.

On March 20th I'll run the A2A Arbuckles to Ardmore Race for Mercy again.

On April 9th I'll run the Davy Crockett Bear Chase marathon in Groveton Texas.

On May 1st I'll run the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon for the 5th time. This is my hometown marathon and I now own a house that's on the course so I might as well run it since I wouldn't get out of my driveway on race morning anyway.

It's not scheduled yet but I will run the Andy Payne marathon here in Oklahoma City sometime in May also if they have it.

My big travel marathon for the year will be Estes Park, Colorado in June. I've always wanted to run this race because it's arguably the most beautiful area in the country that doesn't have a beach attached to it. The elevation will also be a challenge and I like those challenge things a lot.

I've got a few ideas for the latter half of the year but I'll hold those for another post. As I write this I'm already excited about the possibilities this plan could hold. New friends, new places, and a wonderful sense of accomplishment. I'll be sure to write about it.

Thanks for listening