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Saturday, September 27, 2008

The Sun Also Rises: Thinking About the Race Before the Birds Awake

Darkness hangs around a heavy fog, joined like two hangmen waiting. Birds, too wet to chirp, consider with hope that today will be like yesterday. Birds don't know the sun always rises.

Today's race, Tailgate Trot 5K Race, starts at 8:00 am. I am expecting a small race, with mostly local runners, with no more than 200 runners. Although last week's race had a similar count, I don't expect to be as close to the front.

I'm up too early. Sleepless night, Five hours of sleep.

I adjusted all my goal times as I added a new race for November 1. If I generally improve each race, I will be happy. The day my times stop improving will my last PR. I am not there yet. The sun which sets also rises.

I have never read Earnest Hemingway's famous book. I should. My academic focus was American literature, and he is among the Americanist, right there with Poe, Twain, Sandburg, Steinbeck. He's from here, or, rather, around 15 miles east of here.

Racing. I'm drinking powdered cappuccino. Think gas station here, not Starbucks. Toffee flavored. It'll do. I'll be more awake, and all systems should be firing.

Under 22:00 is my general goal, but I will shoot for a 21:30. 6:56 pace. I will try to start at 6:50, if I can, hold to 7:00 for mile two, then charge through a 6:58 for the final 1.1.

The sun rises at 6:45 am. Race time weather is predicted to be Mostly Sunny, 58°F, with a huge 80% humidity. Mostly sunny is far better than all the way sunny. I prefer not to wear my sunglasses when I race.

Meanwhile, Haile Gebrselassie races the Berlin Marathon tomorrow. He broke the world record last year, missed the Beijing Olympics, and should be poised for a serious try at the WR again.

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