Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Heading for Portland, with a salute to Nebraska along the way

ORN:  4 miles, easy
I head into marathon #2 of the fall, The Portland Marathon this Sunday.  It will be a treat to be there again, three years after my first running of the race.  That was only my second marathon of the current era and remains my PR at 4:21.  It also marked my first major run-in with the dreaded ITB Syndrome.  From all I learned and changed following that race in 2006, I've come to enjoy running more and more.  10 marathons later, I can hardly wait to motor up that steep incline to the St. John's Bridge and see the fantastic view.  I'll be spending the weekend with our son Nathan and that is the real treat of this trip. 
While I'm not really tapering (this race is designed as a training run, in preparation for my key marathon in Indy on Nov 7), the usual taper madness is here.  Odd niggles and glitches, funny pings in legs and ankles.  Glad I know what it is.  Race week is always fun for such reasons.  Race day weather looks nearly perfect to me... start temp of 49, and into upper 50s at the end.  As usual, I'll pack way too many shirts, dithering until race morning on the final combo to put under my Maniac shirt.
Here's my plan for the race.  I'll do a 3/1 run/walk the whole way, looking for 10:20 miles through mile 19, then adjusting for a possible slowdown to 11:20 miles the rest of the way in.  If it works, I should be finish around 4:40.  Anything under that will simply mean I could carry the pace past mile 19 and didn't bonk. Over that, well, that means I have learned something.   
If you are utterly bored beyond words on Sunday morning and want to see if I'm anywhere near these paces, click here on race day and put in my name or my bib, 4981.  Try not to be too dazzled. 
On a different topic...I got an email today from Bill, asking me if I could post a link to a race he was promoting on October 10.  I didn't recognize the race, nor did he have an address on his email.  But I did recognize his area code: 402.  Won't make sense to most of you, but 402 is eastern Nebraska, where I grew up.  That was enough for me!  Turns out the Market-to-Market Relay is an 84 mile trip through the beautiful hills and fields and trails of Nebraska, wandering from Omaha to Lincoln.  While some may snicker at using "beautiful" and "Nebraska" in the same sentence, this really is a nice part of the state.  Part of the course is just 30 miles from where I grew up.  A few teams are still looking for runners...if you are interested, you can try here.  Boy, there are just so many interesting races in October!!
I'm looking forward to seeing my son, running, hopefully seeing some of you and enjoying the beauty of Oregon in October.  I'm thankful, daily, for the ability to do this.  It is a gift.  


david said...

Good luck.... I know you will have a great race and visit with you son.

Backofpack said...

No worries, I'm way behind too! I've been skimming blogs and not leaving comments because it's actually adding stress right now. Silly, but true. Somehow, seeing a load of unread stuff in my bloglines adds to my load. On the up side, my load is wonderful - love, love, loving my new job! See you Saturday - have a good trip out.

John said...

Good luck, Joe, you'll do great. Extra cool to spend time with Nathan.

Since you'll be on West Coast time, I'll be following the race! Okay, well, maybe not during church, but as best I can otherwise.

Looking forward to the post-race analytics, too!


Sarah said...

You're is a gift! I think it's going to be a great day for a marathon...nearly perfect weather. I hope to see you, but if not, have a great race!

Wes said...

I am always dazzled by your running, Joe :-) You are my inspiration for my winter marathon. I have a bone to pick with 26.2 mile distance, after all ;-)

Darrell said...

Have a great race and a wonderful visit with your son.

Mike said...

Good luck Joe. The weather looks great and I like your race plan.