To marathon or not to marathon…

I’m thinking about it…

I might just do it…

I am debating another marathon.  Of course that shouldn’t be big news to anyone who knows why I named my blog 278toBoston.  However this is big news to me.  I had almost just given up on running another long race.

The summer has been difficult to say the least.  It has been hot and tiring.  My goal is to run 4 miles each day I run (going for at least 5 days a week) and I have just added a 7-8 mile run on the weekend.

Basically I’m in survival mode running.  Just enough running to not lose the gains I have made in the past few years.

Back to the marathon.  I have a great Hungarian Dr. friend who lives in Jacksonville, Fl.  After I ran my last marathon, he said, “Okay Tom, now that you have run a marathon, you aren’t doing any more, right?”  He was afraid that I could hurt myself by running so far.

Well now he is wanting me to run the Jacksonville Bank Marathon in December.  He wants us to come down and spend time together.  I think the marathon is the excuse he is making for us to come down for a visit, but it is tempting.

A couple of pluses… It is a flat course. It is at the end of December in Florida.  It is 80% shaded.  It is very scenic.  He is an awesome friend.

So, now with confidence from my hill/mountain running over the past couple weeks, I am at a place where I have to make a choice to train or not to train for another marathon.  This training will be easier then last years training as I won’t be doing the bulk of my training in the summer heat.

Anyway, I will make up my mind soon.  My last/first marathon clocked in at 4:14, so a sub 4:00 marathon would be awesome.

Decisions, decisions…

Should I or shouldn’t I…

More on my decision within a few days.

Tom

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Loving the hills!

“You should run Sterling since you haven’t run the mountain lately.”

That text from TJ changed my running.

It happened a week ago.  I had been in a bad rut as I was running the same 4 mile route in my neighborhood since summer started.  I am not a fan of the heat and the only time I have to run is at 3:00 in the afternoon.  So I would run my route and usually have to take breaks to walk a bit because of the heat.  Running just wasn’t fun or interesting anymore, but I had to keep going no matter how I felt as I have a huge investment of time and lost weight in all those miles I’ve accumulated over the past 2.5 years.

Back to TJ’s text.

I thought to myself, “I don’t want to run Sterling”.  It is hot and the hills there are insane.  But TJ was right.  I hadn’t run my mountain in a while.  I was just not interested in the investment during the heat of the summer.

So I headed out to run and made my way to Sterling.

Sterling is a neighborhood about a mile from my home.  I used to run the hills there a year or so ago.  The main hill on the main road is about .25 miles long and ascends 100 feet.  So I looked up at that hill last Monday and thought, here I go.  I ran up the hill and at the top, I took a right turn and went on a more level area to recover and then headed back down.  It was tough!  I did this three time and headed home.  It was the first time in a long time that I felt like I accomplished something.

So Tuesday I headed back to Sterling.  I ran the big hill and then came back down and ran another smaller uphill road that is in the same neighborhood.  After that I headed home.

As the week went on, my times started getting faster.  My sluggish, boring summer runs were starting to be fun again.  I ran this run all week.

I have found from my mountain runs that I have really begun excelling on hills.  Many times after my mountain runs I will actually run faster up hills then on level ground.  While I have been away from the mountain for a while, this has been much less the case, but my legs “remembered” the love of the hills when I went to Sterling last Monday and throughout the week.

Finally on Sunday I actually ran a “long” run in my neighborhood.   It was only 7.5 miles, but it is the longest run since my half marathon in April.  The run itself was uneventful and hot, but just the fact that I was motivated enough to run it, is a good thing.

So things are looking up.  I am just trying to get to October where temps will start dipping into the 50’s and average that throughout the winter.

Even then, I’ll be running hills.

Tom

PS – Sort of ironic as I have now hit 278 followers on 278toBoston.com.  I guess I need to get back to writing! 🙂