Here's what I'm thinking about with the start of the Catalina Eco Marathon less than 72 hours away.
1. I'm very excited to do this race, after signing up and being forced to bail in both 2009 and 2010. Over two years of anticipation, I'm hoping for a fun day out there!
This will be only my fourth race of the year and the longest running race since September 2010.
I am actually tapering for this race. A modified/Josh-style taper, but a taper nonetheless. I've run over 300 miles since I turned on the training about six and half weeks ago. "Real" training ended with 12 strong effort miles with Lukas in Sullivan Canyon/Mulholland on Saturday and I've have been keeping it easy since then. Today is a day off, I'll do a short run tomorrow and maybe a couple miles on Friday morning just to keep the legs moving.
I know this is going to be tough:
But I consider myself a good mountain runner and I always like the idea of a challenging course. We'll see if I'm still singing that tune during the climb between miles 14-20.
And it's supposed to rain. Last weekend, the 10-day forecast said rain but I figured that would change. Not so much. It's still saying 60% chance of rain and thunderstorms. I've raced in the rain plenty. So... Bring it!
No matter what, it's going to be a fun weekend with a bunch of friends.
2. Movember is in full force. Though that might be hard to tell by looking at my face!
Nine days of moustache growth and it's just beginning to show. I've never tried to grow a mustache before. And for good reason. For now, I'm going with the "horseshoe" style 'stache (think Joe Namath minus the soulpatch or Hulk Hogan). That style seems safe and easy for someone (me) whose upper lip hair doesn't grow so quickly. Later in the month, if it actually grows in maybe I'll transition to something more aggressive (yeah, right). Someone at work yesterday said that it will only get better as it grows in more. I'm not so sure. I'm fearing that it will look much much worse! But it's fun and raising awareness for prostate cancer is certainly a great excuse. Coach Jimmy has organized a Coyote Movember team, so at least when I'm with the running group, I'm not the only one with a ridiculous upper lip.
3. Catalina will be my first race since starting my Vegan Challenge on August 1. I feel like the plant-based diet has hooked me up in a lot of ways. I feel lean, but I haven't dropped much weight. Most days my energy and mood are constant throughout the day, even when I'm not getting as much sleep as I'd like. I don't worry at all about getting enough calories or protein. Even though the moral and ethical issues weren't top of mind when I made the decision, I feel good about myself and how I'm contributing to our planet's health. What started as a one month experiment has now been over three months and I don't see any reason to stop any time soon. The Vitamix has been invaluable in my diet switch as has the advice of Rich Roll (Jai Lifestyle), Brendan Brazier (Vega Sport and Thrive) and other on-line vegan and no-meat resources. The support (and indulgence) of friends and family has also been huge, especially Elizabeth who seems to always deal well with my crazy shit.
4. The first year of the Pablove Triathlon Team is coming to an end and that means it's time for us to be out hitting the streets lining up sponsors for 2012. (This year's sponsors included Rudy Project, Infinit Nutrition, Race Day Wheels and Bike Improve.) We have a great group of athletes on the team (including Alana Kennedy-Nasser who took third place in her age group at Ironman Florida last weekend!) and we're growing quickly. We expect to have a good presence at a bunch of races next year, including the LA Marathon, Wildflower, Honu 70.3 and the Malibu Triathlon, among others. If you're interested in joining the team, check out our facebook page. If you're interested in sponsoring us, you can email at email@example.com. Thanks!