My (three) long-time readers know that in the past year, I have taken up running.
Who used to say regularly, "I only run if something is chasing me."
Who literally could not run for 45 seconds without stopping.
It started with a 5K. Then became several 5Ks. And then a 10K. And more 5Ks. Then I decided that I would go for the gold and run a half marathon.
And it's in THREE DAYS.
I feel prepared. I've done several long runs (two 12-milers and a 12.5-miler) and lots and lots of shorter runs (4.7-miles each).
I am actually running three half marathons over the next 7.5 weeks.
The first one is the Santa Hustle. (Click the link for more info.) It's in Sevierville, TN (Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg area), and is this Sunday, December 11. The reason it's called the Santa Hustle is because everyone who is running is given a customized Santa shirt, a Santa hat, and a beard. We're supposed to wear them when we run. And they'll be playing Christmas music over the loudspeakers; they even have candy cane stops along with the water stops.
But I'm pretty sure all I will be thinking of is how friggin' cold I am. The low in Sevierville on Saturday night is supposed to be 22 degrees. And there's no telling how cold it will feel like with the windchill.
I was hoping to be able to maintain an 11:30 average pace, for a finish time around 2:30. But I will be so bundled up and distracted by my frozen extremities that I'm not sure I will go much faster than a snail. A drunk snail.
I've already made my running playlist for my iPod. It contains mostly fast-paced Christmas music with a little Eminem thrown in for good measure.
My second half marathon is Saturday, January 7, at Walt Disney World in Orlando.
My third is Sunday, January 29, at Disneyland in California.
More later on those races; for now, I've got to figure out a way to run 13.1 miles wrapped up in an electric blanket while sipping on hot chocolate.