Well, that's my excuse anyway.
So this coming December I turn 40. And that's one of those milestone years where people can buy you cookies that say you're older than dirt. (They work quite nicely if you turn 50 too, as my sister found out a few weeks ago).
Not usually being one to ponder my own mortality, something about this milestone got me started. That or the fact that my friend John has been talking about aging and the fact that we're now almost old. One of those. Anyhow, I decided it was time to do something I'd never done before. Something I'd always said I wouldn't do because it was crazy...I'm going to run a marathon.
And I'm outing myself here on the interweb thingy so that the three and a half people who read this blog will keep me honest.
I'm aiming for the Portland Marathon on October 1st. This race has several advantages over the Seattle Marathon: first, it's not three days after Thanksgiving, so the chance of a huge turkey-induced mid-race nap are lessened. Second, it's in Portland, so the chance that anyone I know will be running along laughing at how much I suck will be lessened. Third, it's relatively flat.
OK, that last one is actually the number one reason. When I looked at the Seattle marathon map and talked to a friend who has run it I realized that this city has a bunch of hills, and the course is apparently designed to climb all of them. Most importantly, it climbs up Madison from Lake Washington, an altitude gain of somewhere around 5,000 feet. The Portland marathon, on the other hand, appears to be run on a 26-mile-long mattress made of marshmallows and gatorade. Or maybe that's just wishfull thinking...in any case, it's relatively flat, as you can see from the graphs below (the Seattle marathon people don't chart the elevation gain because, well, that would scare everyone away).
Portland Marathon Elevation Chart
I haven't started "training" per se, since I don't think you can call wheezing on a tread mill for a half hour "training", but I am starting to run a bit. And I have a plan, thanks to a guy named Hal Higdon who apparently knows something about running.
My intermediate goal is the 8k (5 mile) "Beat the Bridge" race in May, so if you're in Seattle and would like to join me, let me know. And if you're a runner and have any tips (other than "you old fart, just give it up") send me those too!
Tis the season to get ready for the season
3 days ago