Remember when I said I was toying with the idea of doing the Des Moines Half Marathon?
As it turns out, I already have a pretty firm commitment elsewhere that day — but I'll be breaking my racing drought sooner than that anyway.
My friend Marco signed up for West Des Moines' Remembrance Run, a 5K that honors Iowa's fallen service members. Then he pulled a calf muscle. Walking sometime was out of the question, let alone running. What to do?
Over a few beers, we decided that I should run the race for him and let him take the glory. (I tried to tell him that he'd picked the wrong replacement for glory, but he did — correctly — point out that a did not start brings even less glory than a 30:00 5K.)
But seriously, the Des Moines Register's preview piece on it made me glad to be joining, even if it is as a substitute and not as my own idea.
Clearly, I haven't trained specifically for a 5K. But jokes about inglorious times aside, I'm hoping and vaguely planning for a strong showing: bring the smartphone, run MapMyRun and see how comfortable I feel around the 9:00 pace.
Ambitious? Not in the least bit; it's a speed I've done before over longer runs. It's mostly a target to strike a balance between my regular ole shuffle and the race-day adrenaline that pushes me to start too fast and fade.
Still, I'll end with this quote from George Sheehan, author of "Running and Being": "The difference between a jogger and a runner is an entry blank."