Friday, July 08, 2005

Trail Note: Portland, Here I Come!

I've finally registered for my fall marathon, deciding to run Portland, rather than Victoria, BC. Both are on October 9th, both are not too far from home, both look relatively flat, and both are in cool cities that would be fun to visit for the weekend. I was on the fence about which one to do for the longest time, weighing the slightly rolling course in Victoria with the mostly flat with one taller hill (a brigde) in Portland, weighing the travel times for each (shorter to Portland) with the expense (Victoria is cheaper), and was thinking that the fact that we've been meaning to go to Victoria for a long time would be the deciding point. Then I spoke to someone who ran a marathon in Alberta CA, who talked about something I'd not even considered.

The Metric System.

Of course, I'm familiar with the metric system and am (for an American) decently conversant with kilometers, degrees Centigrade, and kilograms. When it comes to running and pacing myself, however, I'm not prepared for a metrically marked course. I'm learning to pace my minutes per mile, obsessive about the right pace, how to run negative splits, etc., all with the hopes of completing the marathon in less than 3 hours 40 minutes to qualify for Boston. In Victoria, they only mark every 5 miles, which could be the distance in which I ignorantly fall too far off pace, narrowly missing my goal. Also, I think it might be a bit demoralizing seeing every kilometer pass by (what, I've run 20 and am not even halfway done!?!).

So, Portland it is. If anyone is going to be there October th and 9th, let me know. It's good to be registered, and by registering in a timely fashion, I get my name printed on my bib, so folks in the crowd can cheer me on by name if they like.


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