This post is to answer the question of why I run, and what I want to achieve. My running started in April 2009, and it started because I was out of shape. For five years I'd been out of shape and it was obvious that it was bringing down my mood and my energy level. Starting up again, though, is never easy, and the fact that the air here in Calgary is considerably more rarified than what I was breathing in Ontario did not help.
So, going back to 2009, I decided to start doing 4km a day of running, walking, or whatever. Hard to believe that it took a few weeks before I could easily run a full mile. During my grad studies, I used to run two miles to the university as a matter of course. Anyway, after starting small, I found that after a few months I could run a full 10k with difficulty. That is what I considered my "long run", and it was something that I would do every two or three weeks.
Times have changed. I can easily do a 10k before breakfast, and I do so three times a week. My long runs are 30k every weekend. I've been pounding 50 or 60k of asphalt every week for over three months. When I reached 50k per week, I thought that it was a nice level to stick to. But I've been pushing the mileage further and further, just because I can. And this brings us to the key question: Why? Well, obviously because I want to try a marathon, and even though my next opportunity will be in the spring, I want to know now whether I am capable. That is, I want to know if I can consistently and comfortably run over 30k, because if I can do that, then I can run a marathon with good time. And about wanting to run a marathon, yes, it does have a lot to do with the fact that I'll be turning 40 in a couple years.
So, there you have it. I run for health, but I also want to compete. So probably the Calgary Marathon in the spring, maybe Regina the next fall, or who knows, maybe Boston would be fun (ha ha). Those will require considerably more training than the 60km per week than I am testing myself with right now. After getting a couple marathons under my belt, I'll drop back to 50km per week which is a less competitive but certainly a healthier mileage. Because, you know, by then I'll be forty and old guys need to take it easy.