When I first found at I was getting deployed, my only desired outcomes were not dying and coming home with the same number of parts that I left with. The early rumor is that we would be doing full spectrum ops in the middle of Baghdad, and of course I assumed that meant I would be the guy kicking down doors and shooting people in the face. Luckily (for me anyway, the trigger pullers would probably rather be kicking down doors and shooting people in the face) the rumor was widely inaccurate like most rumors in the Army. Other than dodging a few mortars here and there, things here are pretty routine and although I'm in the office around 70 hours a week, that still leaves me plenty of free time. The only problem is that other than the occasional movie and going to the gym, there isn't much to do to fill up that free time.
One thing I've been doing to eat up some of that free time is quite a bit of running. Now, I don't really enjoy the actual act of running, but I do like the feeling I get after a good run and of course it is a big weapon in my war against the damage I did to my body in college. And after college. Actually pretty much my entire life up until this year. One thing I've always talked about doing is running either a half or full marathon. I usually like the excuse of too busy/not enough time, which you can read as too lazy if you so desire. Unfortunately, that isn't really the case here, so in the absence of a good excuse not too, I am hereby announcing my intention to run the Lincoln Marathon on May 6th, 2007. Please hold your applause until the end. Thank you.
For those of you that don't know, the marathon is 26.2 miles aka a really long way. You may be asking yourself why 26.2 miles? Well, it takes back to the Greeks, or the Romans, or some other now defunct civilization, where some dude (Marthones?) ran an important message to his general/king/master and then died. Guess how far he ran? You got it! Okay, I was just going to leave this paragraph as is, but did a little bit of research and found out that most of what I just wrote is wrong. If you want to, you can check out Wikipedia for more information. Go ahead, I'll wait. Or skip it, whatever, it isn't like you paid to read this or I got paid to write it.
The only real negative is that I haven't really built as good of a base as I need, the experts (read the people on the coolrunning message board that seem pretty smart) suggest 30-40 miles per week for 6-12 months before attempting to train for a marathon. I've done between 20-25 the last 6 months or so, which isn't quite as much as I would like. I put my odds at about 50/50 to make it through the training plan without tearing my ACL, 25% to finish without considerable walking, and 10% to meet my goal time. I am shooting for sub 4 hours(9:09 miles) which is somewhat aggressive but doable. Honestly I should say I have no idea if it is reasonable as my long run is 10 miles right now and I have do that 2.5 times at once.
My plan is to do an update on here weekly, primarily to keep myself motivated over the next 18 weeks. I will be less likely to skip my run and play Madden '07 if I know that someone is checking up on me. I'll be following the Hal Higdon intermediate plan, as I thought the beginner plan looked a little too easy in the beginning. If circumstances dictate, I may drop down to the novice plan about half way through.
Those of that you live in the Omaha/Lincoln area will be expected to be present at the finish line and/or random points of my choosing on the course. In case I pass out and die or something like that. I don't want a stranger giving me CPR. Gross. If I make the effort to run for half a day the least you can do is come out and cheer me on. And would it kill you to make a sign with my name and/or a flattering picture of me on it? I didn't think so.
I've also recruited a few friends. Ol' Buddy B is considering making the trip from the Big Apple for his first marathon and JAg has committed to at least doing his 2nd half marathon and maybe his first full if he can make the time. If there are any other aspiring marathoners out there leave a comment and we'll add you to Team Sack. Well, that is all I have to say about that. Training starts Monday! Actually Tuesday because Monday is a day off but you knew what I was talking about. Check back here on Mondays for updates on my plans/goals/hopes/dreams.