Saturday, February 12, 2011
National Breast Cancer Marathon weekend off to a bright, enthusiastic start
Saturday, February 12, 2011----10 a.m.
I started to really get into running after completing the Indianapolis Half Marathon in May of 2004. I ran around the world's most famous speedway and even though I did not get a chance to kiss the bricks at the Brickyard I was hooked for life! To be able to run with such great people and athletes from all over the world and have folks cheer for you is a wonderful feeling. Now almost seven years later my love for running has been taken to a new level. I have run 8 marathons but never have I been more excited about tomorrow. This is not just a run but a celebration of life. I spoke to Donna Deegan this week and she gave me the best pep speech of all by having me watch her touching story about her friend who we now just call Angel. Click on the link for more at http://www.firstcoastnews.com/news/topstories/news-article.aspx?storyid=190821&catid=3 . Angel taught us about letting all the positive energy around you flow and it starts with helping others. You see the big love poster I signed this morning really is what it is all about. Breast cancer is a horrible disease but she did not let it control or live her life. Angel lived her life by helping and loving others in huge ways and just knew she would be fine no matter where she was. I appreciate Donna taking time to share this with me. It gave me a much better understanding about what this weekend is really all about. It is not about how fast you run, or if you can get through the proverbial wall with less pain, but it is about folks from all around the world coming together to help finish breast cancer once and for all. Just finish it!
This morning the Guerrero family you see above all finished the family fun run which included their five year old. Great job! I also met a 4 year old that did the fun run and a 6 year old Caleb from Missouri that completed the 5k. Caleb told me he does not miss all the snow and cannot wait to run 5 miles for his relay team tomorrow at the marathon. It was great to see so many kids this morning. I also spoke to Sid from Charleston, South Carolina who has completed 175 marathons! He said he ran this marathon last year like me and agrees this marathon offers a whole lot more to you than other marathons. It is much more than a run and you could really feel that positive energy at the Expo this morning. I feel like I can run 2 marathons now after talking to all the great people and volunteers. This really has become one of Jacksonville's biggest events and it is something we should be proud of. Another fine gentleman I met and interviewed on the air was Miles who was part of the original group that ran for breast cancer. He told me they started with 70 runners and ran it as part of the Jacksonville Bank Marathon. How far we have come and we will not stop until we finish breast cancer!
The forecast is looking terrific! Nature has impeccable timing. I am giving all the credit to ANGEL like Donna Deegan is! So far in February we have had an amazing 4.07" inches of rain at Jacksonville which is an inch above average for the entire month and it is not even half way over yet. But the statistic that stuck out to me was that we have had only 2 sunny days this month. February is supposed to be one of our drier and brighter months. Well this weekend nature finally gets it right. We will double our sunny days to four thanks to high pressure building in.
Now you see your race temperatures above and they can be a bit deceiving. We will start a bit chilly but keep in mind that temperature of 37 will warm up in a hurry and by 8:30 a.m. temperatures will be in the middle to upper 40s. In the sunshine it will feel more like 55-60 for runners. It is what I call runner's temperature. So just keep in mind those temperatures above are shade temperatures and you also will want to add 10 to 15 degrees to come up with your true runner's temperature. So to me the actual temperature range is actually more like 47 degrees at the start to near 75 in the sunshine by the finish. If there was humidity our runner's temperatures would be adjusted higher. Humidity is what does runners in the most and tomorrow it will be a non-factor! Last year we started with a race temperature of 39 and ended with temperatures at 64 and I remember the heat getting to me the last 4 miles or so....it was also due to fatigue but that sun does beat down on you and the pavement heats up quickly. That is why I came up with runner's temperature which is a whole lot more accurate as to how it really feels to a runner. So yes, shorts and tank top weather for runners. I may wear an old sweatshirt I do not want to keep the first 3 miles or so while I warm up. It all goes to charity so all is good! One more thing you may not realize is that you will need to wear sunscreen tomorrow. The UV index will be borderline high tomorrow or the highest of the year and a sunburn could happen in as little as 40 minutes. Make sure to put on an SPF 45 or higher. Your body is not able to cool itself down properly if you are all sun burnt. That is one less thing you should have to worry about. Remember the shades and sports sunscreen!
Now tonight make sure to tune in at 6, 6:30, and 11 for the latest on this big pattern change and I look forward to showing you the brightest and warmest 7 day of the entire year. You can see the big flip-flop in the pattern with the colder weather moving out West and the warmer air moving East thanks to a jet stream that has finally retreated. This could not come soon enough for areas of Oklahoma that set a new all-time record low temperature of at least -28 degrees Fahrenheit in Bartlesville this past week without a wind chill. It had never been that cold on any day or in any year in modern recorded history. In fact the warm-up in Oklahoma will be so dramatic that temperatures could rise 100 degrees this week alone compared to last week! The power of nature!
Snow cover will quickly melt down and instead of covering 65% of the country will only be covering about 20% of the country by next weekend. The big thaw should also keep the frost quakes to a minimum in western Ohio and Indiana. They were having a phenomenon called frost quakes that scared a whole lot of folks. Many folks heard loud booms and their homes even shook. This can be caused be a sudden cracking in soil or rock caused by the freezing and expanding of water in the ground. Temperatures were below zero in many areas that felt these localized quakes. Since the freezing does not go very far down into the soil these quakes never get too big or dangerous. But they can be scary. It is something I never heard of before.
While we have not had frost quakes here in Florida we have had plenty of frosts and freezes this winter. Do you realize we had our coldest first two months to a winter season ever this year. Yes, it has been confirmed that our December and January were the coldest two months to start meteorological winter on record! Tonight we may have some patchy frost and inland freezes away from the water, but it will be a thing of a past with a zero percent chance of a frost or freeze for at least the next 10 days and no frost quakes in the forecast. I will see you soon and wanted to give a special shout-out to Mike who I met at the expo who reads this blog! Thanks so much for your support! Have a great day and race. Thanks to the many hundreds of folks I met this morning that truly inspired me. God bless!