Some of you already know this, but I started running fairly regularly again in 2006 after a twenty-year hiatus. Then in 2011 I decided the half marathon event was more or less my thing. A little later, I stole adopted Mike’s goal of running 50 half marathons by that age.
Well, my 50th is coming right on up. I have four events left to go by August if I’m going to make my goal. Plus we have another relay event in June we’ve signed up for. It’s a little tight, but doable.
This weekend’s the Race to Robie Creek (my 13th time in this event, and my latest “last time on that damn hill,” but probably not if we’re being honest). I’m also signed up for the Boise Women’s Classic, May 5, and the Tutu Run, May 12.
That brings us to 49 half marathons.
Run For Your Life in August. Despite the heat, it was a PR
The Tutu Run (duh)
Race to Robie Creek – Approaching the summit
The Fit One Half
This is what it looks like finishing a half when you’re also trying to finish the Whole30 – BONK.
The scenery at the Leavenworth Half Marathon
Running with friends at the Leavenworth
The scenery along the Boise River at the Beer-n-Brats Half
I’m shopping for the big five-oh now. And between our relay and summer plans, I left myself about a two week window in which to schedule the dang thing.
Here’s the other thing, it’s going to get warm around here soon, and lumbering along in the summer heat is about the least amount of fun I can imagine. I sweat. A lot. My muscles cramp. I whine. I look like one of the bad guys in that Indiana Jones movie who witnesses the opening of the Ark. Full on melty-face.
Tomorrow, I’ll be running a half marathon, which means today is the last day of that period we call the taper.
If you’re not familiar with the taper, it’s the result of a whole bunch of running science that says it’s good to reduce your miles and intensity a few days before a big event. The length of taper can be as much as three weeks for a full marathon, two weeks for a half, and so on.
I’ve been running 6 to 8 half marathons annually for the past four years or so. Having an event on the calendar keeps me on a regular schedule. Otherwise, I really might just stop all together. BUT, if I’m doing what science says I should, I’m tapering about two weeks before every half marathon, which on my schedule, gives me a solid 14 to 16 weeks every year of taking it easy.
Tomorrow is the Race to Robie Creek, the self-proclaimed toughest race in the northwest.
It’s not so bad. We’ve done it. It’s actually quite a pleasant ascent through a rocky canyon, up a dirt road and over a mountain and back down to a little valley where nudists and tree-huggers and hillbillies live in harmony.
True, the rocks of that little canyon direct heat like a suntan reflector cone right down on that dusty road and the hoards of people ascending more than two thousand feet over 8 miles to the summit. That’s not so pleasant.
Then there’s wildlife. Not the gentle, hoofed kind, either. The kind that coil behind a rock or stalk you from a cliff face. My strategy for avoiding wildlife is that slow thing I do. Think about it. One of little known dangers of being a faster runner is the higher likelihood of getting picked off by carnivores. Because, you know, you’re first.
It does too make sense.