TITLE: The Transition Back to Normal AUTHOR: Eugene Wallingford DATE: November 02, 2006 7:18 PM DESC: ----- BODY: On Sunday I had a beautiful morning for my first run since returning from OOPSLA. That run marked four weeks since my marathon in the Twin Cities, and it was my longest since then, an enjoyable twelve miles over my favorite route. I threw in an 8-minute mile near the end, but mostly I took it easy. My body reminded me that I hadn't run that far in a while. Running in Portland was as good as the conference itself. The cool morning temperatures were perfect, and we had clear skies and no wind all week. I even started feeling a little bit of speed coming back, but my legs felt the increase in mileage. Dare I consider a spring marathon in, say, Green Bay or Madison or Cincinnati? Winter training in Iowa would help me to keep my mileage -- and my expectations -- down. I could run for fun. My virtual training partner from Arkansas would appreciate an opportunity to train in the South's most comfortable season! I know, I know. "Normal" and "thinking of doing another marathon" probably don't go hand in hand for most people. But I have a strange desire at this point to run one for the sake of running it, not for a time. I haven't given up on getting better; I just realize that that isn't the only thing that matters. -----