Friday, October 8, 2010

Call Me Lightning

This entry's title, which is a song by the Who, sums up how I've been running over the past couple of weeks. I can tell that I'm peaking because I'm going a lot faster on my normal routes but feel like I'm holding back. I'm peaking at the perfect time for my half-marathon on Sunday. Today's short (about 5 km) run was another fast one, though I felt like I wasn't exerting myself at all. For a lot of the run I felt very "in the zone." I feel the way I did before running my first half-marathon back in 1991. My time in that race was better than I expected.

I can't believe that the race is in two days. All of the training is in, and I'm as ready as I'm going to be. The weather will be almost perfect for a half-marathon. It's supposed to be sunny and about 10 C (50 F) at the start. If it was overcast, then it would be perfect. But I'll take the cooler temperature and sun over hot and cloudy any day. This afternoon I put my chip onto my shoe, topped off the gas tank, and put my favorite Eros Ramazzotti disk in the car's CD player. I know what I'm going to wear in the race and afterward. Tomorrow after work I'll get my clothing and other gear together.

I don't have any specific time goals. My half-marathons in cooler weather are in the 1:49-1:54 range, while the warmer-weather ones range from 1:55 to 2:00. If I had to set a goal, it would be to beat my time of 1:55 that I had in this summer's Munich City Run. If all goes well, that's a very real possibility.

Sunday's race will be dedicated to absent friends. As usual, I'll pin a photo of my former running partner Bill to my shirt. I'll also be thinking about two other friends who have died. Michael was stabbed to death in January 2008. I ran a couple of races up in Hohenfels with Michael. Even though I beat him every time, he was always very good-natured about it. I had gone to Munich several times with Michael. He and his wife always enjoyed being in Munich. Dan died earlier this year from pancreatic cancer. He was never a runner. In fact, he was overweight and didn't exercise. But he always took an interest in my running and races. If my legs start feeling like they're made of lead, I'll think about one of Dan's jokes to take my mind off the pain.

I'll post a report on the race after I get my results.

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