Saturday, October 23, 2010

The final countdown

So here I am, a little less than twelve hours before I have to leave the apartment and head to Chuncheon for the five-to-six-hour Moment of Truth. (I'm counting on my friends' advice that at 5 a.m., even in my neighborhood, I'll be able to find a taxi to take me to the Seoul Flyers' bus. I'd hate to train for six months and not be able to get out to the race.)

I'm pretty much as ready as I'm likely to be; I've trained well (albeit for a few weeks short of the full term due to switching races), I've got my stuff stacked by the door (wonder which indispensable item I'll forget), and there's not much left to do but fret.

This will come as a huge shock to you-- if you've never met me-- but I'm a worrier and, some less charitable souls would say, a whiner. There are several things to be concerned with:

-The ideal marathon weather is 50 degrees and cloudy; the forecast is for 72 degrees and sunny. Ordinarily that's what I would call a perfect Indian summer day, but there are no Indians in this country and my running a full marathon deserves a lot of adjectives, but "ordinary" isn't one of them. (Of course, a day later it's supposed to be in the 50s.)

-The Chuncheon course is very hilly, albeit (running as it does entirely around a long lake) beautiful...

Last year's Chuncheon... note the gorgeous scenery. I'll be noting the enormous hill.

-I'm used to having lots of water on a long run-- dehydration is a bad, bad thing in running-- and all they have is a water stop once every five kilometers (three-plus miles). (Did I mention it's going to be warm?) On the brighter side, the dearth of water may be a blessing in disguise, as there aren't any toilets on the course.

-There will be about 21,000 runners; I'll be starting somewhere around 20,900th; I hope the other Seoul Flyers don't get sick of waiting for me at the finish.

Still, I had a massage a few days ago so I'm a little less sore than I have been and my iPod and watch are fully charged. I hope I am.

I have a self-imposed code: I will never wear a shirt from a race I don't actually finish. I have the official Chuncheon Marathon fleece and two Flyers/Chuncheon long-sleeve t's and I'll be hornswoggled if I have to throw them out. 

I can't let myself not finish.

1 comment:

Marilyn said...

Do well young man...after all you prepared for it...and I am SOO glad you are doing this. Enjoy every painful moment.