Mystery Solved, and a Few Other Tangents

THANKS TO BLAINE MOORE’S EMAIL NEWSLETTER, I FOUND OUT why my watch said I’d run much farther than 26.2 miles at the Chicago Marathon. Barring a measuring mistake (which did happen at a local half marathon in March, but unlikely at a national race), I’d concluded that my watch was off, likely due to downtown buildings interfering with the satellite signals. Turns out the Garmin may have been correct after all. The 26.2 official miles are measured using tangents – the shortest possible path through the race course. Not following the tangents means running extra distance, which means more effort expended and a slower finishing time. Now he tells me! For those of you who are interested, here’s a link to his article with the details of what tangents are and how to run them.

One of the rigors of my Canada trip. Took me four days, but I got through it!

Marathon recovery continues. I am gradually getting back into my regular training activities, I got home Saturday afternoon from an intense business trip in Canada, ready for a long nap. But the gorgeous warm day pulled me up and out, and after a brisk 7 mile run, I felt much better. On Sunday I got in a 25 mile bike ride, and I snuck in another tonight, getting home just as it got fully dark – at 7:15. Sigh. And the Dexter Dairy Queen is closing for the year in a few days. Where did the summer go?

Due to work and other annoying distractions, I haven’t been able to get in many Aikido classes, although I did get to the instructor’s clinic at the main dojo. My training partner for the clinic was one of the most senior black belts, and I was nearly the most junior student there. His supportive attitude and patience with my many mistakes reminded me again why I like training at this school so much, and reinforced Sensei’s message that the instructor is there to provide an environment where learning occurs in an enjoyable way.

Back to group running tomorrow evening, and in addition to having to readjust to colder weather and finishing in the dark, I’ll be focusing on preparation for the Holiday Hustle. Speed work ahead – far from my favorite type of run, but necessary if I want to meet my goal.

P.S. I have added a “Chicago Marathon 2011” page with the collected marathon-related posts and photos.

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