In the next 25 days ... and the Blue Ridge Marathon

It's really hard to believe that the Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon is less than four weeks away. I have a little more than three weeks to continue doing what I'm doing for a decent race, but in the next few weeks I have a lot going on. This weekend I'll be traveling to Ohio to visit the in-laws. While I have no doubt that I'll have a nice very flat long run this weekend, I do lose two days in traveling on Friday and Monday. But with the way this week has gone, I should still get in 20-plus miles for the week. Next week is a bit more tricky. On Thursday, I am headed to Birmingham, Ala., for Social South, a social media conference. Of course I'll still run, but I may miss a good long run. That will be OK though. It'll be a nice break before one final week of solid training before I really ease up the week of the race.

The biggest thing is the feeling of being busy while keeping my eye on the big prize -- the race. In a way it's nice to have distractions, but at the same time I'm eager for it to get here.

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A couple of weeks ago I mentioned what may become my next marathon. At the time I had very few details about the race, but today I received an e-mail alerting me that things were falling into place. The official name is the Blue Ridge Marathon, which will be held on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

The inaugural race will be held April 24, 2010, beginning and ending in downtown Roanoke, with a tour of the region’s highest peaks in-between, according to a news release. The event is part of celebrating the Parkway's 75th anniversary.

"This race course will be like running through a post card," Congressman Bob Goodlatte said in the news release.

"It will be beautiful, it will be difficult – even for experienced marathoners -- and it will give people a chance to use the Blue Ridge Parkway differently than they've historically been able to do," event co-chair Pete Eshelman, director of outdoor branding for the Roanoke Regional Partnership, said in the news release.

The race also allows runners to see several other attractions in Roanoke including the Taubman Museum of Art at the start and Hotel Roanoke at the end.

For more information, visit www.blueridgemarathon.com. Details are also on Facebook; you can also get updates on Twitter by following @BRM26pt2.

I think this a great idea for a race -- I'll decide soon after the Rock 'n' Roll Half if I'll do this or not. And even if I don't, there's a half marathon that's a part of the event.