I woke up today with some new kind of resolve about the job search. I wish it would have come to me 2 weeks ago when I was super stressed about it. The reality is, I don’t have a job, but I’m happy. I’m not happy because I don’t have a job. I’m happy because I am in the place, geographically and mentally, where I want to be. Among other things. I’ll have a job soon, this I know. I’m positive. In the meantime, I’m going to enjoy the time I have and make the most of it. That’s the resolve.
Thinking back over the last week of running, I realize that there’s a lot of good stuff to look forward to. For my birthday, which is less than two weeks away, I’m getting the Daytona 100 race registration. A week after my birthday, I think I’m going to do an 8-hour timed race down in Port Charlotte. It’s only an hour and fifteen minutes away. It’ll give me a chance to see where I am fitness-wise. It’ll also put me in a race scenario, which I haven’t been in for over a year. It’ll be hot, so I can practice keeping hydrated. I’m thinking about all of these things as I reflect on the week past because everything is starting to become real. I talked about running a 100-miler for a long time, and never really saw an opening for when to actually do it. In the first stages of the move, it became apparent that sometime this year would be optimal. Most of the looking around I did was speculative and never did I expect to settle on a road 100. Even now it seems ridiculous. But it’s what I can train for. And as it gets close to my birthday, when I’ll be signed up for the race officially, it’s getting real. And it feels awesome.
I’m excited for 100 miles on the road. Most of the running I’ve done in my life has been on the road, so I’m comfortable on that surface. But my thought was always that 100 milers are done on trails, period. Or at least that I would only ever want to run a 100-miler on trails. A lot of that thinking had to do with scenery and setting. As a general rule, I think trails are inherently more beautiful than roads. Unfortunately, in Florida, and in November-December, my window for a race, there wasn’t much to choose from. One race was 10 loops on a 10 mile trail. I don’t mind loops at all, but that seemed very repetitive. I would’ve chosen that race if it was the only option, however. I had heard about the Daytona 100 on multiple occasions and shrugged it off immediately. Road hundred, fuck that. But then I looked and saw that it was point-to-point. And I saw that it took the runners past some sweet scenery, scenery that I love, beaches. And then I thought about training specificity. On every training run, I can match the conditions I’ll face during the race. That’s specific. So it was.
More on the 8-hour race. It’s in Port Charlotte, on trails, so not specific, but I’ll still be able to test my fitness. It’s a 2.8 mile loop, one aid station. I still haven’t signed up but if I do, my goal will be 40 miles. 5 miles an hour gets it done. It will be hot for sure. I think it would be a great opportunity to test out different nutrition options, mainly. I won’t be able to test out road shoes like I am eager to, though. That might have to wait until the Pinellas Trial Challenge in September. I’m pretty sure the Boracay will be my shoe, unlikely as that seems. I wonder if anyone has ever even run a marathon in those shoes. Who knows, I just like the way the cushioning feels – not mushy but not hard. I want to try out some different Hokas. The Challenger 3 was so good on the trails. I’ve even run in them on asphalt and they were great, but a less grippy outsole is needed for the road I think. It’s like grip tape. Maybe that Napali or the Clifton, even though every review is terrible. And I have to try the Peg 35, although it looks more speed influenced now. That probably won’t matter though. It still weighs 10 ounces so I’m sure there’s a bunch of cushion.
At this point I’m just rambling. The goal for this week is to run the same miles Monday-Friday as last week, then 25 on Saturday and 15 on Sunday. That will set me up to do a short taper for the 8-hour race. Also, that will complete my first 70-mile week in a year.
I’m going to continue the job search full force but not let it get in the way of the fact that I have this precious time to just run, and write.
Above photo is from a few weeks back at Fort Desoto. I think I’ll go there this week and do one of my runs, then jump in the Gulf.