25 days to the Berlin Marathon

Tomorrow is September. With less than 25 days to go for the Berlin Marathon, the countdown has officially begun. I am more excited about running Berlin than I was when I ran New York or London. Berlin is a flatter course with easier transportation logistics. With some luck, the weather will cooperate and give us runners slightly overcast skies and temperature in the upper 50s with virtually no wind.

The first draft of my race plan is ready. After taking into account all the slight ups and downs and twists and turns on the course, I have come up with a target time of 3:45. The London Marathon (4:00) earlier this year didn’t go quite as well as planned mostly from starting out too fast, heavy congestion and cramping. The New York Marathon (4:14) was an absolute disaster of a race. I’m hoping to hit my target time in Berlin. The trick will be to go easy for the first half of the race and then pick up the pace. With tens of thousands of runners around you, this is easier said than done. Discipline is the name of the game and I seem to go overboard with excitement in the first 15 miles!

I was in Nashville on Monday for work. It’s always nice to see Julie and Len and Renee and George. Julie and Len cooked some delicious rare, juicy steaks with herbs and potatoes capped off with rhubarb pie. I’ve never had rhubarb pie but couple if with ice cream and it’s magic!

On Monday morning, I ran an easy 3.7 loop in the Nashville heat and humidity on hilly terrain. I hope Berlin has no humidity. It’s not easy running in sticky conditions.

Nashville running loop
Steaks and Potatoes in Nashville
Rhubarb Pie
Handsome George!

My pups taking a nap – look at how peaceful and content they are!
In evening light after a bike ride yesterday

Last week celebrated #NationalDogDay. I’m quite certain that it is a holiday promoted by the pet industry, but all the dog postings on Twitter made me sad thinking of my own pups. In Nashville, Julie gave me an early birthday gift; a book called “Good Dog: True Stories of Love, Loss, and Loyalty” It is a compilation of short stories about dogs written by dog-lovers. I read a few of the stories on my flight back from Nashville. As expected, it tugged at my heartstrings.

The political season is upon us in all its glory. If you have been following this blog, you already know that I am far left of center in my political leanings. It will be an entertaining ride from now through November. I follow Nate Silver’s blog >> fivethirtyeight.com << you should too!

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