I’m getting closer to pulling the trigger on a spring marathon – namely The Shamrock Marathon in Virginia Beach over St. Patrick’s Day weekend.
It’s relatively close to home, rumored to offer a fast and PR-friendly course, and known for good organization and fun crowds.
All good, right?
It should be – but there are a few nagging somethings preventing me from diving in.
First, there’s the fact that I haven’t run consistently in forever. With all the racing we did in 2012, by June I found myself in a never-ending cycle of race/recovery. For months I was either coming off an event or getting ready for one, and in the in-between I did little more than core work and regular maintenance training. That, coupled with the ankle injury in Scotland, means that it’s really been five months since I’ve had any semblance of a routine.
Next, there’s the little matter of running 26.2 miles – alone. I have a couple friends that will likely come down to Virginia with me for the weekend, but neither of them will be marathoning. I’ve done a handful of marathons solo – one was fantastic and the others ranged from ‘eh’ to ‘ugh.’ I love my running buddies, love the social-ness of the sport, both in training and in racing. It would not be an exaggeration to say that I have not run (outside) by myself in well over a year. I’m sure I could make friends along the course, but especially coming off a couple years of concentrated focus on adventure racing – team-dom on steroids – three and a half hours, give or take, of solo running sounds a little bit daunting.
And finally, there’s that whole training-through-the-winter thing. If the past two weeks are any indication, we may be in for a doozy of a few months. I don’t mind running outside during it, but my lungs can only handle the cold so much. We actually just bought a treadmill and set it up in the basement, but the first (and only) time I used it, I discovered that in order to watch TV while I run, I have to turn the volume up so high that the entire house rattles. We inherited some sort of speaker system that Brent has since set up, so I need to test it again, and I (unsuccessfully, so far) have begun looking into wireless headphones – but I fear that I may need to find other ways of distracting myself if I’m to run inside.
First world problems, I know.
So, I’ve got some pondering to do over the next couple weeks. The registration fee is set until December 31, so there’s nothing pushing me to sign up right now.
First up, start establishing a new rhythm.
Second, go outside on my own.
Third, stock up on magazines.
And fourth, keep making lists.