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After enjoying Austin’s fine eateries this weekend, I’ll be rising early tomorrow to run the Austin Half Marathon.  Registering for this run served its purpose which was to keep me training through the winter.  Not that I lost any measurable weight but I know I can run 13 miles.  I ran 13 last Sunday in the rain.  The next day, my throat was sore and I had an annoying cough.  I don’t think it’s a cold, I suspect allergies.  Austin is suffering from their worse drought in eons and yet it’s rained nearly every day I’ve been down here.  It’s floodin’ down in Texas.  Hence, the mold count is high and it was only a matter of time before I began to display symptoms.

This isn’t going to stop me from running tomorrow.  My cough got bad enough that I didn’t run yesterday or today.  I would have run though if not for the allergies.  I’m not worried about keeping my legs fresh because I’m simply going to treat tomorrow like any other workout.  It’s not like I’ll be racing.  But I would like to think I could feel strong.  I’ve doubled my distance from 3 to 6 miles since traveling to Austin two weeks ago and I can feel my stride quickening.

And you know, I’ve been struggling with plantar fasciitis.  Not that I’ve healed myself of that little malady, but I have taken control of it with some good shoes and by wearing the Strassburg sock every night.  If Jesus loved runners instead of Tebow and Lin then I would be rewarded for all this training.  Instead it’s a constant uphill struggle.  My age alone conspires against me.  I need a good two miles before I sufficiently loosen up and find my stride.  I shouldn’t have these additional hurdles.

I’m not sure what to expect from this sore throat and cough tomorrow.  I know my foot will loosen up.  Unless I actually do have a cold, allergies shouldn’t impact me too much considering I won’t be pushing my pace too hard.  It would certainly hinder me if I were racing balls out, but it’s been decades since I could do that.  Still, I could use a little help here.  The full marathon kicked my butt last year and I was hoping to find this year’s half marathon more enjoyable.  The weather is supposed to clear by race time, but I won’t be surprised if it’s floodin’, and all the telephone lines are down.

Regardless of the weather, my foot or the mold count, I’m ready for tomorrow and I’m going to enjoy the atmosphere that is Austin.  The Austin News is on right now playing a story about all the cancer survivors that will be running.  Understand, this is the Lance Armstrong sponsored LiveStrong Austin Marathon.  So I’m not going to whine anymore.  You know what Wall Street and Lance Armstrong have in common?  They’re both too big to fail.  My brother made that one up.  I picked up my race packet at Palmer Events Center this afternoon.  What a party!  For runners with any cash remaining from the triple digit entry fee, a thousand sports vendors were lined up selling their wares.  I was actually looking forward to this as an opportunity to buy some new ear buds.  I’ve read in some running blogs about Yurbuds and was curious to see them.  Naturally there was a booth and I tried them out.  The reviews said these are the absolute best ear buds for running in terms of handling sweat and fitting.  Some negative reviews dissed the sound quality.  I suspect the poor audio quality was associated with the cheaper versions.  Yurbuds come in 3 or 4 models and the ones I tried out support an iPhone and sounded decent.  I bought them and will wear them tomorrow.

I haven’t been running with music much lately but thought I would again.  I do suspect I run faster to music.  It’ll keep me from thinking about work for sure and that’s a good enough reason to run with music.  Gonna work on a new runner’s playlist right after publishing this blog.  I also picked up some 1 ounce energy packets at Palmer.  I bought two Hammer Gels, one GU Energy Gel and one GU Roctane.  I’ll study their nutritional values a little more carefully and select two to carry in my pocket for the run.  I’ll probably eat one at 6 miles and the other around 10 miles.  For anyone interested in following my progress on the Austin Marathon App, my bib number is 16012.