Posts Tagged ‘worldwide half-marathon’

So, GMR participant and colleage JMK came into my office today to tell me that she was googling for information on the course of the Staten Island Half-Marathon this weekend, and Pigtails Flying came up as the fourth result. As she is another book marketing guru, she teased me and said, “You’re using search engine optimization techniques, aren’t you?”

October 12 is a big day for running–for me, for my friends & wider running community, and for the elites. I’ve got the Staten Island Half-Marathon to race; I am secure (stupid?) enough to say publicly I’m going to try and nudge my PR a teeny bit and break 1:53:34. I’m looking for even ten seconds of improvement here.  SI is an easier course than Queens, and the temps will be much more hospitable, so if my body and mind cooperate, maybe I actually have a shot. No matter what, I am confident I’ll break my record for the course (2:22:27), so at least I’ll have that. (Did I just jinx myself?) Once I cross the finish line, I can also cross off another one of my running goals for 2008.

Additionally, I am running this half-marathon as part of the Phedippidations Worldwide Half-Marathon, which is kind of like that brilliant-yet-nauseasting marketing ploy the Nike Human Race, but (BIG BUT) the PWW 1/2 is way better–completely grassroots, 100% participant-driven, and not trying to sell you any godamned thing, except maybe a sense of accomplishment and, you know, some good clean fun. If you are registered to run a half-marathon, a 10K, or a 5K this weekend, click here to sign up and participate in the Worldwide Festival of Races. It’s FREE, easy and subversive (trust me on this one, kids). If you need additional convincing, click here to download The Extra Mile Podcast, an inspiring compilation of listener contributions about their training and goals for all the different races they’re competing in this weekend. A lot of my running buddies are signed up for the SI 1/2: DT, EN, JMK, JD, and that’s just for starters. I enjoy going to races knowing there will be a lot of friendly faces out on the course, I am sure I’ll also see my dear old TNT coaches, too.

Also on October 12 is the Chicago Marathon, the second of the three World Marathon Majors races that fall in the Fall (I couldn’t resist). I know a bunch of runners signed up for this flat, movie-star doozy; but the most important one who’ll be out on that course on Sunday is JM, one of my girlfriends with whom I skied in Utah this winter. She’s an experienced marathoner (and much faster than me), having already run Marine Corps in 2006 and NYC in 2007.  JM is not only running for a PR on Sunday, she’s running to raise money for Children’s Memorial Hospital, where she works as a social worker with children who have AIDS. She’s 75% of the way to her $1000 goal, so if any of you are feeling generous, have a connection to the cause, or just need another tax deduction, click here to donate. I promise you’ll feel as satisfied as if you just completed a speed workout if you make a donation. Not persuaded? The first five people who donate $25 or more and posts a comment to tell me so will get a free copy of A Race Like No Other. Run strong and beautiful Murph, you know I’ll be thinking of you from Staten Island.

How can I let a WMM event go by without at least a nod at the eiltes? The field will be exciting. The women’s Olympic Marathon gold medalist, Constantina Tomescu-Dita, is returning to a course familiar to her (she won in 2004 and has run it four additional times already). American Colleen De Reuck is also competing, I saw her run at the Marathon Trials in Boston earlier this year, [correction: I’ve never seen her run, have just read about her in local races.–PF 10/9/08 8:57 AM] and everything I read about Colleen makes me like her–she’s had a long and successful career, and is currently the top master’s woman in the 10K distance. Plus, she’s a Boulder, CO-based athlete. (Matt–have you seen her race? And thank you, we remember from one of your earlier comments that Constantina is also based on Boulder.) 

Big stuff, this weekend.

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Ultimately, it has worked out for the best that the New York Road Runners moved the Queens Half-Marathon to September. First off, I no longer have to try and PR in the brutal August humidity. and, secondly, it means the Staten Island Half-Marathon got bumped to October — October 12, 2008, to be exact. Which coincides absolutely perfectly with: the Phedippidations Worldwide Half-Marathon Challenge! For those of you who read my blog and also listen to Steve and/or The Extra Milers, you will know what good news this is.

There was just no way I was going to get out there and do 13.1 all on my own. I know myself. I’d run 18 as part of my training, but to specifically find a 13.1 mile route, and run it that weekend? Sorry, nope, I’m a stickler and I like my races on measured, official courses.

For those of you who don’t know anything about Phedippidations, or the Extra Mile Podcast, visit the website for the Worldwide Half, and consider registering to be part of this global race.  I for one am psyched to put my results up against those of other runners from around the globe. I will run happier, knowing that while I’m out there tearing up Staten Island, other like-minded runners will be tearing up their local road races.  And what I’d really like to know is: are there any other WW1/2 racers here, in New York, who will be participating on Staten Island that day?  And if so, can you give me a ride to the start?

All kidding aside, I’m glad to make the Staten Island Half-Marathon my WW1/2 race. It was the first Half I ever ran, in 2006, and I can’t wait to go back and crush my old course time, set a new PR, and run my first WW1/2, all in the same day.  How often can you run a race for the second time, while also running a race for the first time?  

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Since I was laid low by this pernicious chest cold on Thursday, I’ve had to move down to Plan B in my training schedule for the week. Needless to say, it’s a bummer to have to cut out two work outs and shorten another. If I wasn’t so wiped out from this cold, I’d be emphatically pouting.

So: no run Thursday. No run Friday. Saturday I’d already scheduled as a rest day, but I cut today’s long run back to a five-miler, which doesn’t really count as a long run.  But it’s smart I cut it to five miles, since after the third block I had to reel in my pace and take it easy — as in, 10:34’s easy. It took me 52:47 to run the five-mile out and back route over the 59th Street Bridge. Nothing really notable about this run except that I was conjested, the hills didn’t bother me at that pace, and I was mostly just grateful to be out there even if it wasn’t the 10-miler I’d hoped for.

I listened to The Extra Mile podcast during this run, and I really enjoyed some of the entries people submitted.  One guy, from Flagstaff, AZ, told about why he started running, and his first race. I wish I could remember his name — he also podcasts in Japanese! — because I really liked his attitude. Laid back (he referred to himself as “dude”) and enthusiastic about running (“I had fun”). One day I will submit an audio file to the podcast, I promise. I want to record while I’m running, so I have to get my hands on a digital recorder from work to borrow either on a run home or over the weekend. But, I already have rudimentary editing skills, so the hardest part will be running with the darn thing in my hands.

I was reminded about the Worldwide Half, promoted by Steve Runner of Phedippidations. I really want to register for this, but it’s going to have to be last minute.  So far, the NYRR’s don’t have a half-marathon scheduled near that weekend, and I’m not tye type to just run my own route.

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