TITLE: Two AUTHOR: Eugene Wallingford DATE: February 12, 2009 8:15 PM DESC: ----- BODY:

Two can be as bad as one
It's the loneliest number since the number one

-- Three Dog Night

Two is the number of times I have run since Tuesday afternoon. It is also the the number of times I ran between Tuesday and December 21, and twice as many times as I ran in the entire month of January. I was so excited when I ran three miles on January 30 that I nearly blogged One, because it had been one month since my previous run, and my only run in January. (I'll talk about that December 30 in an upcoming Running Year in Review.) Good news: The two runs this week have not led to the symptoms that knocked out most of November and December. That's especially good news given that months of medical testing have failed to find their cause. At this point, I have the most accurate snapshot of my body and its health ever: blood tests, metabolic tests, stress tests, sleep tests, gastrointestinal scopes, an MRI of my head, an ultrasound of my internal organs, and finally a marrow biopsy. The tests came back negative, which is positive -- except for finding a cause. I'm ready for the symptoms to disappear and become a mystery of the past. So two runs in a week with good health feels great. I ran only three miles each time, slow but not so slow that I am setting negative PRs. My legs feel good, ready for more. I'll wait until Sunday or so before trying that. Ever the optimist, earlier this month I signed up to run a spring race. My running buddy has wanted to run the Indy 500 Mini Marathon for a few years. I'm an Indianapolis native who grew up amid the mystique of the Indy 500 but who didn't run while I lived there. I was easily sold. The race -- America's largest half marathon and one of the five or six largest races of any distance -- is May 2, so I have my work cut out for me. At this point I don't envision myself "racing" this one. Instead I'll use it as a goal to drive my return to running this spring, and then on race day as a symbolic return to the real thing. Running for fun can be fun, and it will let me know whether I have what it takes to get back into serious mileage and some real racing later. Maybe even an autumn marathon. -----