today i am 209 days into my return to running. and on day 210 i am planning to complete my first ultramarathon. i returned to running with the dream of being able to participate in marathons. a couple of months into my return, i read the book “ultramarathon man: confessions of an all night runner” by dean karnazes. the content of the book got me dreaming about participating in events that go beyond 26.2 miles (which is the definition of an ultramarathon, i.e., an event that goes beyond 26.2 miles). actions transpired that provided me the opportunity to give ultramarathoning a go tomorrow at the inaugural “frisco fifty” (31.05 miles). this event lands just a couple of weeks prior to my first scheduled marathon (the “flying pig” on 05.03.2009). the completion of these two events will merit me a bronze level marathon streak amongst the “marathon maniacs” group (a group that i got acquainted with at the little rock fitness expo and am very interested in joining).
marathoning and ultramarathoning are consistent with the manner in which i have pursued recreational activities in the past (activities such as: skateboarding, disc golf, ball golf, etc.). when skateboarding was my obsession, it was very rare to not see my on a skateboard. i approached disc golf and ball golf with that same consuming energy and would often squeeze in practice time before work, after work, and if possible i would find a way to include it in my work day, i.e., take some of the youth i work with out onto a course.
needless to say, i am very excited about tomorrow. the event will be a challenge for me. my longest run over the last 209 days was a 22.5 mile trail run (which is also my lifetime record). it is possible that i will experience a moment or two where i will question why i committed to going 31 miles. hopefully those moments will be fleeting and i will return to thankfulness regarding the opportunity to get to run 31 miles. not only do i get to run 31 miles, someone is going to time me (being timed was a huge motivator for me as a child). tomorrow’s mantras: I GET TO RUN 31 MILES AND SOMEONE IS GOING TO TIME ME, RELAX AND ENJOY THE JOURNEY, and IT’S ALL GOOD.
thanks everyone for all the encouragement over the last 209 days. i look forward to sharing my race report with everyone a.s.a.p.