Monday, November 5, 2012

Oh hi! Remember me?

I'm still alive! And I'm still running!

I just have one wicked case of writer's block.

It started in August, when I wanted to blog about my experience at the Madison Mini-Marathon, but the words just wouldn't flow.  And then it snowballed with each subsequent event I participated in, because it became increasingly challenging write about multiple events in a single post without it turning into a thesis-length report that would bore everyone to tears.

I really don't want to bore anyone to tears!

But I feel like I have let you down.  And by "you", I mean all of my three loyal readers. You know who you are.  You are the few and the proud who enjoy reading about my varied and occasionally exciting running adventures, and I am sure you've felt bereft by my lack of posts recently.  Utterly bereft!

So, how I can sum up four months of running in a concise, enjoyable blog entry? Well, that's still the challenge I'm facing. But I'll give it my best shot.


*staring blankly at computer monitor*


Yeah, see what I mean?  This ain't easy.

To be brief: I ran some races, ranging from 5k to full marathon, in the last four months.

To be slightly less brief: I PR'd in the 10k distance with a time of 49:59.9.  And then the very next day, I ran a 1:59 half marathon at Fox Valley. I nearly PR'd in the 5k, running just 2 teeny tiny seconds slower than I needed for a new PR.  I also nearly PW'd (that's "personal worst", for those unfamiliar with my made-up terminology) in the marathon, when I ran-walked the uber-hilly, pitch-dark Screaming Pumpkin Marathon in costume, finishing after 1 o'clock in the morning. I am pretty sure I sleep-walked the final loop of that marathon.  Oh and did I mention that I only trained for FIVE WEEKS for that marathon?  Personal worst aside, getting to the marathon distance—without injury—in only 5 weeks of training is a major accomplishment.  I also ran a couple of fun, no-pressure events with friends.  And I am pleased with every one of those accomplishments, fast, slow and in between.

Running a 26.2 miles...  at night... in costume...  with swords.
(Photo by Steven Blanchard)

All of this brings me to the here and now, where I start to look forward to 2013 and plan my next great adventures.  So what do I want to accomplish next year? Well, I feel like I have pretty much returned to my fitness levels of 2011, with the exception of being able to run a fast marathon.  I want to run a fast marathon again. Another sub-4:00 would be really nice. And I think I'm at a point in my life where I can realistically put in the time and effort to make that a reality.

I am officially registered for the 2013 Illinois Marathon, on April 27.  That means I have a full six months to train my ass off (maybe not literally...), and do a lot of panicking and race-day planning.  When it's -20° with 25 mph winds in January and I'm whining because I don't want to do my long run in an arctic tundra, you all need to remind me that this is what I wanted. I signed up for this insanity. Voluntarily!!!

So, here goes nothing. Wish me luck!  And hopefully, I will shake this case of writer's block so I can keep you all well-updated on my progress toward my goal. Also, I can keep you well-updated on my level of panicking.

I'm going to institute a color-coded system, much like the Department of Homeland Security's threat warning system. Take this helpful government-generated graphic and replace all instances of "terrorist" with "panic". (Side note to the US Government, who is probably flagging this blog entry as we speak: Don't get your knickers in a bunch over my use of "Homeland Security" and "terrorist" in the same paragraph. I'm just a little ol' law-abiding marathon runner. The biggest threat I pose to this country is depleting the national banana supply.) Anyway, just refer to this chart as I report my current marathon-related panic attack threat level.

Current panic level: Greenish Blue.

Peace. Love. Train.


  1. Yeah! An entry! So super thrilled! Awesome costume for SP. i think it was the sword that slowed you down....

    I thought the national banana supply was imported!

  2. Well, hopefully I can run right along side you for part of your winter "this weather sucks" runs in training for the Illinois -- just doing the half (AGAIN) -- but that means I can run with you and Kristi for 1/2 of the long runs in training! :)