Harry Potter and The Distance Runner

Like so many this month I am suffering from a bit of Harry Potter mania.

Ok, ok, maybe not mania. I didn't go see the midnight opening of the movie dressed in robes and round glasses, but I do have phases where I can spend hours on sites like the-leaky-cauldron.org and jkrowling.com and can't help but be sucked into everything about the books.

Last night I saw the latest movie at the IMAX at Lincoln Center. Its my favorite of the movies so far. The movie making is the most sophisticated (matching the increasing weight of the plot) and it also the only movie that feels connected to the others (thanks to flashbacks to scenes from the previous four films).

Now to add fuel to the fire, in only five days the seventh and final book will hit the shelves. And truth be told, I will probably be in line to get a copy at midnight...and I may go to the street party at Scholastic headquarters--but only because it's just a few blocks away from my office and it'll be the last chance ever the see a blowout event like this. Unfortunately, my wife is also hooked on the books and next weekend will most likely be a battle royal over who will get to read the book. (Odds are stacked against me because she is the faster reader and will probably finish reading all 700+ pages in that weekend.)

So that's my passion of the moment.

On the running front things are good. After a pathetic run on Tuesday morning I did a pretty good job on Wednesday's and Thursday's runs. And then yesterday I managed a dead-on 9-minute pace for the 12 mile long run: my exact goal pace for the marathon. Not sure if this is good or bad. I mean, it's great that I have the 9-minute pace down, but I'm only at 12 miles and running logic dictates that you get slower at longer distances. But on the other hand, during training for all my previous races I managed to get faster as training progressed because I became increasingly comfortable with a quicker pace at a longer distance. But then again, this is a new distance for me.

I've also noticed a new set of demons in training for MY FIRST MARATHON EVER. The demons from my half-marathon days were weak and could usually be shrugged off with a little bit of concentration and a good iPod playlist. But these marathon demons, they are on a different order of trouble. They haunt me during the day and remind me constantly that I am attempting to DOUBLE the longest distance I've ever run. During almost every run I remember the year I volunteered at Boston and saw dozens of runners collapse at the finish line (completely forgetting the 1,000s of runners who did not collapse.) I constantly think about the time, energy, and complete exhaustion that is involved in running a full marathon. And about once a day, every day, I think to myself: what the hell am I doing? These marathon demons suck--and I haven't even crossed the half-marathon mark in training yet.

No comments: