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Smuttynose Marathon 2010

3:19:19

Thank you to all of you!  You have been so supportive!

Full race report is on the way.

(Still sorting it all out in my head!)

Official Time - 3:19:19

Five weeks until New York!

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Today’s weather forecast for the Smuttynose Marathon in Hampton, NH:

Sunny to partly cloudy, high of 58° with a chance of BQ.

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In a few days I will be traveling up to Hampton Beach, New Hampshire to run the Smuttynose Rockfest Marathon. I have worked hard this summer, following a proven plan, hoping that it will translate into a Boston Qualifying time. During this week I have actually been surprisingly unfidgety with my taper. In previous marathons I have dreaded this week before a marathon, but with every workout on the Pfitz 12/55 plan planned right up to Marathon Day, I have had a sense of calm I have not experienced in the past. That’s not to say that I’m not very excited.

But as excited as I am about running this thing and hopefully achieving my goal, I am just as excited, if not more so, about running Smuttynose with two friends, Pete and Brendan. The interesting part about this though is that I have only met Pete once and I have never met Brendan. Still, I plan on putting much of my Smuttynose experience in their hands.

Our plan is to run together for as long as we are able. We have agreed that if someone falls off the pace (7:38/mile) we will not all slow down for them, but we do plan to try to carry each other to a sub-3:20 finish, which would be a PR for all three of us (Pete’s PR is a 3:24, Brendan a 3:27 and mine is a 3:30). Unfortunately for Pete, he’s a bit younger than Brendan and I, so a 3:20 doesn’t qualify him for Boston.   I won’t blame him if at some point he is feeling it mid-race and takes off.  In the meantime, we will run together – strangers in the real world, good friends within our online running community.

I feel lucky that I live in an age where a site like dailymile exists.  The three of us have become friends because of dailymile (and to some extent Twitter).  Pete (of Runblogger fame) was the first person in the ether to reach out to me a year ago when I was stumbling blindly on Twitter looking for advice on the Manchester Marathon.  Through him I was introduced to dailymile.  On dailymile (a social site for active people) I was able to connect with many, many other people who, like me, found joy in regular physical activity.  I eventually connected with Brendan, who just might be one of the most positive people on dailymile that I have ever interacted with (which says a lot because as a whole, the people you find on dailymile are a very positive bunch!).

Over the past few months, the three of us have encouraged each other through good runs and bad, through health and injury.  This Sunday will be the first time I go into a marathon with a solid plan to run with friends.  Hopefully we will draw strength from our numbers when we all inevitably hit the wall at around mile 20.  Regardless of what happens, I know that the experience of running together will be a positive one and will help us run faster than had we been alone.

Wish us luck…hopefully there are 2, maybe even 3 BQ’s waiting for us on the other side of this weekend!

Stay tuned!

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Since 1992 I have been waiting.

Waiting for what you say?

I can’t specifically say. To be discovered? To be handed fame and fortune? To win the lottery? I have been waiting. As a youngster, I always felt I was destined for something big, but I never did anything about it. In 1992 I said to some friends I wanted to go to New York, become a soap opera regular and become a star. My friends were all for it. I did eventually go to New York, but not until 1996, and only for a job as a paralegal at a midtown law firm. I did finally make it on to a soap opera, but only as an extra and only because a dear friend of my sister-in-law happened to be the head writer and was kind enough to get me on (Thank you Lil’ Jess and Tom!).

Yup, that's me in the background...

Still, I waited. Waited for greatness, for fame, for fortune.

***

It’s not coming, is it? There is no Justin Bieber fairytale waiting for me, is there? (part of that may be because I don’t sing…details.) Random House is not going to stumble upon my blog and decide they MUST have a book written by Luau. Foxnews is not going to decide that they MUST talk to me about the minimalist movement and make me a media darling. Oprah is not about to come calling, asking me to talk about how we can get America healthy again…is she?

No.

The lottery, both figuratively and literally, is not about to call out my numbers. My blog may be just under a year old, but at nearly 41, I’m no longer that fresh face with potential.

And yet I have waited.

***

For the last 11+ weeks I have been following a training program aimed at helping me run a 3:20 or better at the Smuttynose Marathon on October 3rd. I have not followed the program to a tee, but I have worked very hard and made re-adjustments along the way to keep me on track, both in mileage and types of workouts. Injuries and travel have required me to make some changes, but my numbers are lining up correctly and I am feeling very confident. If I don’t manage to qualify for Boston, it’s going to be very, very close.

If I do run a 3:20 or better I will have to face an ugly, brutal truth: to achie—

-<<record stratch>> – Wait…what?  Luau, um, did you just said that if you ACHIEVE your goal, you’re going to have to face an ugly truth?

Yup. That’s what I said. The ugly truth is this: to achieve your goals, most of us must work for it. If I run a BQ (Boston Qualifier), it will have been achieved through sweat and pain, hard work and determination and even a little bit of blood. There has been no “waiting” this time around for a BQ.

As much as I like to pull the “back when I was your age” card on my children and younger friends, the truth is, my generation really was the beginning of the immediate gratification/MTV society (I can’t say generation anymore because we have had children that also carry this need for immediate gratification…Video on Demand?  DVR’s? 24 Hour News?).

My father didn’t raise me this way, but somewhere along the way, I lost the thread.  I left the path and I got lost.  Things came too easily too early for me and I got comfortable.  Well, these 11 weeks have brought me a new perspective.  Barring a twisted ankle on the course, I will run close to, if not achieve a BQ.  Regardless, I know I will run a personal best (Providence is my current PR at 3:30:11), and it will all be because of hard work.  I feel like I’ve cut away the fat, more mentally than physically.  I am ready.

So Random House, Foxnews and Oprah, watch out.  After I hit this BQ, I’m coming.

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