By Ross Forman
How fitting, my next marathon is Sunday, Oct. 17: the International City Bank Long Beach Marathon, and the Starting Line is, oh, about an hour northwest of the home of my good friend Bill Goldberg.
Yeah, he’s simply Goldberg to his loyal legion of worldwide wrestling fans; that one.
Goldberg (shown to the right with my good buddy, Chuckie) has long run with the motto Less Is More, and what a perfect slogan for me for this marathon.
The Long Beach Marathon will be my ninth marathon over the past three years, and as I also did for the Vancouver Marathon last May, I have cut down the number of training runs in advance of Race Day. This is a planned approach, with extra time instead spent riding the bicycle at Bally’s Total Fitness, as opposed to grinding out mile after mile in my Brooks running shoes. No doubt my knees are screaming, “Thanks!!” This version of “less is more” might not work for everyone, but it seems to work for me – Vancouver was my second-best and only two minutes behind my Personal Record.
Second, I head to Long Beach with less baggage, so to speak. I’ve dropped weight, intentionally, over the past few months. Close friends have noticed. So have casual friends. Now I want to see how fewer pounds translate over the 26.2-mile journey, and I’m confident this version of “less is more” definitely should help.
I thought about doing my 20-mile training run for Long Beach on Saturday, Sept. 18, but, since that would be my last long run, I changed my course, so to speak, since I thought a month out was too long before Race Day.
Then the plan was for Saturday morning, Sept. 26, but I was sick for a few days before that, so that killed the 26th.
So, my final long run before Long Beach will be two weeks before Race Day – and that’s the exact strategy (timing and mileage) that my friend Dell in Honolulu incorporates, and he’s been running the Honolulu Marathon for 23 consecutive years.
I’m excited for Long Beach and then the Honolulu Marathon on Sunday, Dec. 12. I’m just not excited for the cool, and soon-to-be cold temperatures that I’ll battle in Chicago. Bally’s will see me more and more as the temperatures drop. Sorry, I don’t do outdoor running in the cold.
I did, though, register for the Hot Chocolate 15K on Saturday, Nov. 6, held in Chicago. Can I, or should I, start my complaining now? I know I’ll be miserable running outside that day. But, several friends also are doing it, too, and the race boasts, “The Best Goodie Bag In The Country,” including a sweet-looking chocolate brown technical zip-up runner's jacket to keep warm on race day. No doubt I’ll wear it!
I’m still undecided on the Goofy Challenge for January, which is a Half Marathon (13.1 miles) on Saturday and then a Full Marathon (26.2 miles) on Sunday. Yes, that’s back-to-back days. Sounds insane, sounds stupid, sound like something I shouldn’t even consider. But I am. I need to make a decision on this one soon.
Best wishes to all running the Chicago Marathon on 10-10-10. I’ll be in Daytona Beach that day, but my thoughts will be running with you.
PS … I will be flying to the Long Beach Marathon on United Airlines, of course – Chicago O’Hare International Airport non-stop to Los Angeles. And I’m proud to say, check out United’s in-flight magazine, Hemispheres, in October. The last page, to be specific.
PSS ... In tribute to the Long Beach Marathon, check out my current favorite song below.