Marathon training starts today, but it's a cross-training day, which usually means rest for me. So I start training without running. :) I’m still not sure which marathon I’m doing, but the two I am deciding between are both on October 11th so the training schedule is the same. I’ve gone back and forth between the Steamtown Marathon in Scranton, PA and the Towpath Marathon near Akron, OH. There are great reasons to do both, but what is making me lean towards Steamtown at this point is that I think I want my Ohio marathon to be at my alma mater, Kenyon College. They have a marathon there in April. It is VERY small and fairly new, so I guess I should check to make sure they plan to continue it for a few years.
The bonus to doing Steamtown is that my friend Peter from NJ said he would travel with me, but that is only if he is still in NJ (he is possibly relocating this year). So I can’t guarantee that. The bonus to the Towpath, though, is that my friend Deb lives near there and could possibly come with me to cheer me on. But it’s her birthday weekend and is not sure she’ll be in town. What it boils down to is that I know I will eventually have to run some of these marathons on my own with no one on the course out there to support me (at least no one specifically designated for me) but I’m not sure I’m ready to go solo just yet. What do I need this person for? Many things….such as supplies (i.e. GU energy gel, water, Gatorade, Body Glide), cheering, and picture-taking. It’s also a huge motivational boost to know someone is out there waiting for you at certain mile markers. It helps motivate me to get to that mile. And of course it doesn’t hurt to have someone there to drive you after the marathon, since your body is not in great “driving shape.”
The main reason that I am deciding between PA and OH is that in the fall I want to go on a trip to visit friends in these states. You see, I just turned 40 and I decided that for my 40th birthday I wanted to spend some time with people who had a wonderful impact on my life, but who I don’t get to see often. Some I haven’t seen in years. So it will be special to visit with each of these people, if only for a cup of coffee (hopefully more!). If I run a marathon in one of these states, I can combine the marathon with my birthday trip. Of course all of that driving won’t be easy after running a marathon but I’ll manage somehow. I think I’d rather run the marathon first and then visit everyone, as I don’t want to expend too much energy the week before the marathon.
Once I complete my fall marathon, I will have finished 9 marathons in 7 states. By the end of 2010 I hope to complete my 10th state so that I can join the 50 States Marathon Club! So far in 2010 I am planning on the Gasparilla Marathon in Tampa, FL at the end of February so that I can visit my brother and his family, who are moving to that area this summer. And I’m thinking about Kiawah Island in SC in December so that my parents can be a part of that one. It would be cool to have them there when I finish my 10th state. We’ll see!
Now that I am back to training I will be writing more updates to this blog. And I’ll let you know what I decide to do on October 11th! :)