Friday, August 02, 2013

Setting Goals

It's not uncommon for someone to ask me what my goal is for the marathon. But my standard response is: to run another marathon.

This probably isn't the answer they expected. Of course, the usually ask the question expecting a finish time but most non-runners don't know if a 4-hour marathon is good or bad.

But running another marathon implies quite it bit. I'm not going to kill myself just to break the 4 hour mark. I don't want to blow out my knee, have a heart attack, aneurysm, dehydrate, hyponatremate or any other number of bad things. As a matter of fact, I want to be able to walk without serious limping 48 hours after I finish. On the third day, I want take a 2 mile jog around my neighborhood. On the fifth day I'd like to be able to go down the stairs facing forwards.

That type of answer usually depresses people. Is it really that bad? No, but ultimately I want to be 80 years old and still running marathons and I think having a post-race recovery goal is as important having a race goal.

If they're still listening, then I'll tell them the answer they are looking for: I'd like to run under 4 hours, 15 minutes.

Why 4:15? Three reasons:

4:15 would be a personal record for me.
4:15 would put me in the "top half" of marathon finishers (see Numerical Madness II).
4:15 would put me on par with Sean "P-Diddy" Combs

But any marathon finish is a good finish in my book.

Just for reference, here are some "famous" people and their marathon times. Where do you fit in?

David Lee Roth, former lead singer of Van Halen, New York City Marathon 1987 (6:04:43)
Freddie Prinze, Jr., Los Angeles Marathon 2006 (5:50:49)
Mario López, Saved by the Bell, Boston Marathon 2002 (5:41:41)
Nick Hexum, Vocalist from 311, Los Angeles Marathon 2006 (5:29:44) and 2007 (5:39:?)
Tom Vilsack, Governor of Iowa, Little Rock Marathon 2005 (5:28:39)
Al Gore, Vice President of the United States at the time, Marine Corps Marathon 1997 (4:58:25)
David James Elliott, JAG, Boston Marathon 2000 (4:57:23)
Bill Frist, Former United States Senate Majority Leader, Marine Corps Marathon 1997 (4:54:36)
Mike Huckabee, Governor of Arkansas, Little Rock Marathon 2005 (4:39:04)
Bill Rancic, Winner: The Apprentice (Season 1), Chicago Marathon 2001 (4:31:31)
Oprah Winfrey, Marine Corps Marathon 1994 (4:29:20)
Kyle Petty, NASCAR Nextel Cup driver, Las Vegas Marathon January 2005 (4:18:34)
Sean Combs, New York City Marathon 2002 (4:14:54)
Meredith Baxter, Family Ties, New York City Marathon 1982 (4:08:30)
Jarno Trulli, Formula One Driver, New York City Marathon 2000 (4:02:21)
Michael Waltrip, 2001 and 2003 Daytona 500 champion, Las Vegas Marathon January 2005 (3:59:23)
Will Ferrell, Boston Marathon 2003 (3:56:12)
Anthony Edwards, Chicago Marathon 2003 (3:55:40)
Kim Alexis, model, New York City Marathon 1992 (3:52:00)
George W. Bush, 43rd President of the United States, Houston Marathon 1993 (3:44:52)
Michael Dukakis, Former Governor of Massachusetts, Boston Marathon 1951 (3:31:00)
John Edwards, Former United States Senator, Marine Corps Marathon 1983 (3:30:18)
William Baldwin, New York City Marathon 1992 (3:24:29)
Mike Malinin, Goo Goo Dolls, 2000 Chronicle Marathon in San Francisco (3:23:56)
Björn Ulvaeus, former member of Swedish band ABBA, Stockholm Marathon 1980, (3:23:54)
Alan Turing, mathematician and cryptologist, Leicestershire Amateur Athletic Championships Marathon 1947 (2:46:03) (fast AND smart)

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