Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Preparing for San Francisco

Back in January I was already training for the La Jolla half marathon and my running was right on par.  I was pushing myself during my tempo runs and religiously completing my speed work.  I was hopeful that I would do the 13.1 miles faster than I did in Chicago, despite the hills.  Then the unexpected stress fracture sidelined me for 6 weeks.  The La Jolla HM took place this past weekend and I tried not to think about the fact that I was laying poolside, doing laundry when I should be out there running it. 

Being sidelined due to a running injury doesn't have to stop us from working on other areas of fitness. There was a great article in the last issue of Runner's World called The Bright Side. It touched on the up sides to being injured, such as crosstraining and learning to listen to your body. It also features some great rehab exercises to do while you're out of the game.  This article came at the perfect time for me.

My sights are now set on the San Francisco Half Marathon.  It is part of the official San Francisco Marathon with the option to run the first half or the second.  I will running the second half for two reasons;  1.) It is far less hilly and 2.) It starts slightly later.  Most people choose the first half because the course takes you over the Golden Gate Bridge, but at 6:30am I don't want to be running anywhere, not even if it happens to be over one of the most picturesque of landmarks.  My original hopes were to race my next half marathon, rather than simply complete it.  I have to accept that it will most likely be the latter.  I have years of running ahead of me in which I can race against myself and try to beat my own times, but this time around I will just E-N-J-O-Y. 

San Francisco after all, is one my favorite cities.  I find the streets and homes exquisite and enchanting.  I wind up speechless every time I turn and catch a glimpse of the ocean from the top of one of the many precipitous hills.  These are the reasons I am using the race for an entire weekend getaway.  I have the flight and hotel booked as I eagerly await July.  Angela and I will be enjoying some beautifully poetic music by one of our favorite independent artists, Edie Carey at a local coffee shop.  I am looking forward to a day of leisure in Sausalito and a big pasta dinner in the charming Italian neighborhood of North Beach.  On our last trip to San Francisco Angela and I  had one of our most memorable runs, ever.  We still reflect on that run to this day.  I hope this race provides many wonderful San Francisco memories as well.
San Francisco - 2009