Alright, I'm pretty far enough removed from the Long Beach Marathon that I can look at the future with anticipation once more. The scars are still there, but only if you push down deep enough. It's like a deep bone bruise at this point, nothing visible from the surface.
Anyway, I don't exactly have a lot on my race calendar which is a good thing really. Three runners from the 10s asked me to pace them at the Mission Inn Half Marathon in November. This is the same half marathon I swore I'd never run after the horrible experience last year (the course was 12.4 miles, one of many goofs). But I am willing to swallow my pride and run this race again if it means that I can pace these runners at Mission Inn. That's on Nov. 11, and will probably be my last race of 2012. There is one other possibility - the inaugural Loper Holiday Half on Dec. 2, but I may volunteer at the race again with Mrs. LB and the girls. We had a lot of fun volunteering last year and will have a lot of fun volunteering once more for the race.
Mostly, though, what I have in front of me is time. I have time to get back into it, time to shed some pounds and get into good running shape, to build up my midweek miles, to get some speedwork in, to become a stronger runner for the winter months, which will demand strength from me. I've been tracking my calories now for more than a week and so far so good. Plus I hit the gym for some lifting sessions. I'm not a fan of lifting but I need to have a strong core and be strong overall, and that means more gym time. It may eat into the time and energy I have to run but I think it is worth the sacrifice. Running four miles and getting in some core work and resistance training will do me more good than running seven miles and doing nothing else. At least, that's the way I look at it. The trick though is to get in my seven miles AND the cross training. That's what I'm going to try and build up to. I think I can do it.
So now that the race is in the past, I do think that I've been able to snap out of it and get back on the right track, which is a good thing because I need to learn from my mistakes and atone for them, and that's what I'm trying to do here and now.