Saturday, July 14, 2012

Still Your Man For The Roaming

I am looking forward very much to this morning's Belmar Five, which is a five-mile race through the streets of Belmar, New Jersey.  The combination of the distance and the weather conditions (a traditionally hot and steamy July day is in the forecast) makes this race one of my favorite summer events.  I do not expect to win it this year as sadly the organizers have once again invited people other than me to participate.  I hope to run a representative time (40 minutes and under would thrill me but anything under 45 minutes will please me just fine thank you very much) and to have a good time.  Here's to hoping those turn out not to be mutually exclusive pursuits.

A couple of summers ago - when I had first been bitten by the running bug - I dragged my poor wife all over the goddamn place for races.  I have a closet full of t-shirts from the inane number of races in which I ran.  We spent every weekend - or pretty damn close to it - from the middle of June through the middle of November at some race somewhere.  On some weekends I ran in one on Saturday and one on Sunday.  Unbelievably selfish behavior on my part.  It pains me to admit it but it is true. 

An unexpected benefit/side effect of having participated in the New Jersey Marathon the past two Mays is that the number of events in which I participate has dropped off dramatically.  And along the way I have rediscovered why it is I was drawn to running in the first place, which was not to compete with others but rather to spend a bit of time alone in thought walking around in my own head.  Just me and my chorus of voices, having a hellaciously fine time together. 

If I have read their promotional material correctly the good folks who put on the Belmar Five anticipate somewhere in the neighborhood of 3,000 runners toeing the starting line this morning.  I am looking forward to the company - well at least the company of my running sister in soles Gidg - as it shall offer a nice change of pace.  But I am already looking forward to tomorrow morning's run.  No bib on my shirt.  No finish line to cross. 

Just a road on which to run


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