Monday, April 11, 2011

The One-Hour Mark

Today was the first time since early December that I ran for an hour. It felt good to run that long again. Over the past month I have been gradually increasing my long runs and have had no signs of the calf injuries that plagued me over the winter. Today's run was a mix of flat roads and trails in the hills. I hit my checkpoints faster than I expected to, mainly because of the cool weather. My legs felt great afterward, even at the faster-than-expected pace that I ran today. My speed has come back in all of my longer and shorter runs.

I'm starting to think that I may be able to do the Munich City Run half-marathon in June if I continue at my current pace. Earlier this year, I thought that it was a definite no-go because of my calf problems. I'll have to look closely at the calendar, but it appears that I'll be able to get in enough long runs to feel confident about being able to go the distance. The only down side is that I won't have any down time if I feel that I need a rest week. I really like to have some built-in rest periods when I train for a long race. I'll also have to build up my mileage faster than I normally like to.

My mind isn't 100% made up about running the City Run. As it gets toward May I'll evaluate how my training is going and take it from there. If everything keeps going this well, I should make it to Munich. I'd really like to do the City Run because it will be the only half-marathon that I'll be able to run this year. It would be nice to run the half-marathon that was part of the Munich Marathon in October. But I just don't see how that will be possible. I'll be in the States for three weeks in August and September, which is when I'd be doing a lot of long runs to prepare for an October race. It would be too hard and rushed to try and prepare for such a long race. I may do the Eibsee Run in late October, but that's a shorter run. Like with Munich, I'll play Eibsee by ear.

If I end up running in Munich this June, I'll bring a photo of my friend Dan with me. I usually bring my late running partner Bill's photo and pin it to my shirt. But Bill has been with me for my last three races in Munich. Dan died last year and was always interested in my running even though he wasn't a runner himself. This is going to sound like I'm ready to be put into the nearest psychiatric facility...when I get toward the end of a training run, I look up at a certain place in the sky for Bill to let him know how my run went. Today I gave two thumbs up toward "Bill's place" and saw Dan there instead. I took that as a sign that if I do the City Run, Dan should accompany me. Dan was my best friend when he was alive. Who better to get me over the rough spots than a best friend, right?

Stay tuned to see how my training is going and if I decide to sign up for the City Run.

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