Saturday, June 12, 2004

Secret blogging

When I started this blog a few days ago I sent e-mail about it to some of my friends. Not that they feel obligated to post comments, with the exception of the lovely chica who lives here:

And not that I mind, although it makes me wonder if I shouldn't have gone with my initial plan of not telling anyone at all and just seeing who eventually showed up. I considered that for all of five minutes. But one of the responses I got from my friends on the initial e-mail informed that s/he had in fact been keeping such an anonymous blog for ages now, and s/he shared with me the URL on condition that I not reveal his/her true identity. And so I check out this blog, which I hadn't known about before and which is really very well done, and I discover that my friend has a highly elaborated world of internet fans and friends, most of whom seem to maintain blogs of their own which is either exactly the point or totally beside the point. I don't know which.

This morning I did the Run For Children's Hospital for the third year in a row. (And suddenly the meaning of this blog title becomes clear... ) This year I was able to persuade Chad and Ben to run it with me. Ben is the kind of runner who makes me insanely jealous. He has the sort of effortless skill and speed that wins races with enough training. Ben's the guy who got me to do Hood to Coast last year, which was hands down the best race experience of my life, and he's also the one who accompanied me to the Portland Marathon in October. He's just recovering from an ankle injury and associated two or three month layoff and he still finished with 7s. In another month he'll be comfortably training sub-7s again. Yikes.

But the big winner today was Chad, who was running only his second race ever and who took a full minute per mile off his time from last year. That's some serious improvement.

For someone who's not a very talented runner I spend a lot of time running. After a few years of comparatively slow times and one strange, magical year of very fast times I seem to have settled into a groove of medium times. No matter how I train I can't seem to get back to my pre-pneumonia performance level (and I recovered from pneumonia a year and a half ago now!). I can coach other people to improve their times pretty dramatically, but my times seem to stay the same no matter how I adjust my training. I'm thinking about getting someone other than myself to coach me. On the other hand, I can pound out eight or nine minute miles more or less forever at this point. Slow and steady may not win the race, but at least it always finishes feeling all right.


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