Sunday, November 16, 2008

Disappointed, not dismayed

The inaugural Pasadena Marathon was canceled at 4 am.

I didn't find out until after my early rise, smoothie, and energy bar. At first I didn't believe the electronic signs along the freeway saying "Pasadena Marathon Canceled." I thought, "maybe the half marathon is still on." But when I pulled into the parking lot just before 5:30, the officer informed me that, indeed, all race activities for the day were called off by the city and Kaiser Permanente, the primary sponsor of the event. Kaiser is one of the country's largest not-for-profit health plan providers, so if anyone can be in a position to evaluate the health consequences of running long distances is particulate saturated air, I guess Kaiser can. They did anyway.

Coming home from Pasadena, I drove within sight of one of the raging fires plaguing the region. Memories of last October.

Now the reality is kicking in for me: I've rested two straight days, had an easy taper week, and need to run. I feel a 12 mile run coming on this evening. Smoke or no smoke. With Radiohead.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

The Day Before Tomorrow

Blogs are supposed to have some immediacy to them, no? Here's my day, my feelings right now, the day before my first half marathon. A race I didn't realize I would run when I started putting my feet down with purpose in early January. But it is a race I am destined to run. Tried to get a good night's sleep last night, because that is what everyone I talk with recommends...didn't happen. Too many thoughts about ancient rocks and evergreens.

But I have eaten normally today and tried to keep hydrated. The Santa Ana winds are blowing, making it hot, dry, clear, and in parts of the basin, smokey. I feel confident that I will run a good time tomorrow, for me that means under two hours, but all the logistics have me running around at the last minute for sunglasses that vent (haven't needed them for 11 months), nipple sized band aids (haven't needed them either), and a nice pair of running shorts with places for keys and energy boosts (actually, needed them).

I'll run without carrying water on the advice of a good friend who appreciates being unencumbered. No music either. I want to experience the entire race without the aid of the boys from Oxfordshire.

Despite all the stuff I need to gather, I have my bib number, clothes, and shoes. And my legs. I'm ready.

Thursday, November 13, 2008


This is my week to taper off before my first half-marathon this coming weekend. So my easy runs are easier, my tempo run is like an easy run, and I have consecutive days of rest.

I am wound like a spring.

When I first started running in January, I was doing it to survive. Now, my daily runs help me thrive. I've been so focused on my training, that I've neglected my blog.

Oh, well.

I will return to it as I refind my balance. As I unwind and gain control all at the same time. There is a time for tapering. Even if it is just in preparation for bigger challenges, loftier goals, and renewal.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Saying, Meaning. Saying, Doing.

Several months ago, I heard quite a few people say this: "America is not ready to elect a black president."

What they meant: "I'm not voting for a black man."

Here's what most of us said: "I'm not just voting for a black man."

What most of us did: Voted for Barack Obama.

Welcome to the real start of the 21st century.

Chicago is in the House.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Apologizing for Entropy

Grass is dying in my fair city. Someone feels the need to acknowledge it, to explain it, let us all know something is being done about it. I'll have to let city hall know that the asphalt in front of my house is cracking, that there are a couple of burnt out LEDs in the yellow light on the corner, and that, on average, it seems a bit hotter these days.

This morning ants busied themselves along the trail. An opossum hid low in the bushes. I went for a run.

No apologies necessary.