TK, of PigtailsFlying, is not a happy camper. She was planning on running London, for Team Fox (as in Michael J.) to raise funds for Parkinson’s Disease. But she had a sudden hamstring issue which, although it appears to have turned so she no longer is limping, will hamper or even prevent her doing the marathon on April 26.

She’s a great blogger and Twittered me that she was revising her goals for 2009 to focus on half-marathons. That’s a delightful distance. It’s one that will be difficult. More than any other race, it enjoys/suffers from the “Passenger” effect. Running a 10K or shorter leaves me pushing. In the half-marathon it’s getting into a fast groove and holding on as fatigue sets in in my quads and questions arise as to how long I can maintain. I perhaps don’t challenge myself as much as I should since I try to go out relaxed (not slow, relaxed) and pick it up and I count down when I get to 7 because I’m passed the half-way and I’m pleased when I get to 10 because it’s only a 5K to go. But I think I’ve been successful at it.

The HM all has the benefit of not being a marathon. You train for it, but it’s not race-specific, five or six month process one has for a marathon. (I know that there are those who don’t follow that approach, but I’m not one of them.) You don’t live or die on the one race. You can run one one month and another the next. And sprinkle in 10Ks in between. You need a fair amount of mileage (as I noted in my recent 15K report), but not the three-or-more 20-milers that a marathon requires.

On the world stage, HMs are very heavily contested. But the marathon is the thing for many. It was not for two of my favorite runners when I was younger, Herb Lindsay and Pat Porter.

So now perhaps I’ll do the Fairfield Half. The danger with this race — June 28 this year — is the heat; it can often be a broiler with the first and last two miles being pretty much out in the open. But it’s a very good, challenging course that fits well in my current training cycle (which is also looking to peak for NYRR’s Park-to-Park 10K on June 13.

Off topic: Great post title from LetsRun: You know its not your day when you run 2:04:27 and Lose!, although the thread points out that Sammy Korir ran a 2:04:56 in Berlin, under the world record, but was second to Paul Tergat’s new WR of 2:04:55 in 2003. With the Rotterdam and Paris results, LetsRun proclaimed “Welcome To A New Era In Distance Running – Marathoning 2.0” and it may be right. I watched the second half of the Rotterdam race on Sunday, and it’s online here.

I mention Paris. Friend and Clubmate Pascal Lauffer (No. 3524) wanted to break 2:45 and he did, with a 2:44:52. He wrote a pre-race piece, including that he was Running for Margo. And in keeping with his 2008 NYC Marathon report, we expect a similar one for Paris.

My former teammate Mark Thompson also ran well, setting a PR after a disaster in NY.

So congrats to both of them for their good efforts.