Something about the end of the year makes me want to run a “fast” race. I tried it last year with Fresno in November in my attempt to run a “flat” course. I really had nothing on my radar for the end of this year and had zero marathons registered for the remainder of 2013… which is strange. Well, that was quickly remedied.
I’m running CIM
If you live in the Bay Area and want to run a fast race, CIM always seems to be the one that runners mention. There are other races that are considered “fast” and by all accounts have a better course elevation, but for some reason, this one is the one that we all end up doing. I ran it back on 2009 and set a 5-minute PR (4:40) at the time, but dealt with major leg cramps the last few miles.
In my circle of running friends, we all sort of shrug about this race… we run it, but we’re never really excited about it and it’s sort of a “fine, let’s go run CIM” kinda mentality. In 2009 when we all ran it (16+ runners) it was windy and cold as heck. Last year (which I don’t think any of us ran) it was torrential down-pour and portions of the course were ankle-deep in water. Remember when I ran that 50 mile race in the mud and rain? Well, CIM was the next day and it rained MORE.
The other thing about this race is that it is pitched as a “fast course” and if you aren’t prepared for rolling hills, you may be surprised. It has a net-downhill profile, but if you look at it, there are some ups and downs mixed in there. In theory, this could help keep your pace consistent, but running up is still running up. This course has a high % of BQ finishers and draws a lot of fast runners… so I guess I’m choosing the right race. I’ll be running with (at least) 3 people from my training group, so I’m looking forward to it.
Either way, time to get FAST.
I haven’t set a goal yet… ok, I have, I want sub 3:30. That would be 19 minutes off my marathon PR. That’s ambitious, but I’ve got 4 months to get ready. Remember my #August200 challenge? Well, expect be to become a running machine. I’ve taken a month and a half off from racing and these legs are itching to get back out there. I’ll share my fall schedule later in the month and layout my training plan. The good thing is that I’m running 16 miles this weekend, so my base is already there… just need to get faster.
Okay, teach me how to run a marathon “fast.” GO!