Saturday, October 13, 2007

The Iron is Hot

Thanks to all of you who commented on my last post. I think most of you are right... I don't think it was in my heart to cut out of a marathon simply to save myself for a better time. Once you sign up and prepare for marathon, I believe you are emotionally committed to finish. Short of a physical/medical reason, I don't ever plan of dropping out.

I said I was sizing up my next race. I was looking at out-of-state races. However, an unexpected race opportunity came up in the wake of the Chicago Marathon disappointment from last week. It does feel a bit soon, but let's just it's time to strike while the iron is hot, baby!

My next marathon is in exactly two weeks. Call it a bit of an improvised marathon as a result of the difficult conditions at Chicago, but the folks who run the Chicago Ultra have put together a USAT&F Certified Marathon course as part of their 50M/50k race. No, I will not be doing either ultra distance.

This feels like a bit of an experiment, since I never imagined I would try to do this. But I have got to muster a better time in cool conditions given my fitness level. Can I recover quickly enough? We will find out.

Somehow, I am completely underpacked for this 2nd trip to China. I do not have a single polyester running shirt. I have no lined running shorts. I have one pair of cotton gym shorts and a single cotton t-shirt. I packed a pair of my beat-up Nikes, since my Asics from last week's marathon were still soaked from showering in all the drinking water that the later runners missed out on (sorry again, guys!). I didn't even pack the Garmin. (I guess you could say I initially planned to take a break from running this two weeks).

Nonetheless, those meager running clothes will be sufficient to do some recovery/taper running. I just completed a 13-mile week. I traveled and rested through Thursday. I did a decent 8 today.

I also have done a little swimming here at the hotel for recovery. The hotel has a great 25M pool. I realized how much work on swimming I will have to do if and when I go for a triathlon. I did five laps last night in about seven minutes. I am willing to bet I looked like a special ed case. I'll save the swimming lessons for a later date.

It's time to knock out one more work week in China, give a final report to my Chinese colleagues on Friday, then fly back home on Saturday.

This week I will target 34 miles, 22 of which will be here in Chengdu. I cannot wait to hit the Prairie Path for a nice 12-miler next Sunday when I get back. Yet another milestone will be achieved: three marathons in a single year and my TENTH in my lifetime. Bring it!


yumke said...

Ah, well welcome to the taper again :). I'm not surprised you're signing up again.. Have a good rest of your trip to China.

robtherunner said...

Sounds like a good plan to me. Good luck with the next one.

Running Jayhawk said...

Mike wants you to bring the lady along to keep him company. :) He's going to be bored waiting for me out there.

But I'm glad you made the decision to go for it. It'll be fun having you pass me up a few dozen times out there!!

Darrell said...

Very cool about the chance to do it all again.

Oops on the packing. My running stuff is always the first thing in the suitcase. Sounds like you made the best of it, though.

Firefly's Running said...

Have a great time during your last days in China. Good luck in getting your mileage in this week.

Bob said...

Swimming will speed your recovery big time. You will be ready I have little question about that.

jen said...

Wow, well good luck in your next marathon- already! Enjoy your time in China, I think a light running week is just what you need. Enjoy the swimming and take it slow, you will improve rapidly when you start putting in more time. Enjoy your recovery and have a safe trip. :)