Running All Over Africa

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Most New Year’s resolutions focus on stopping something negative: quitting smoking, laying off the fast food, putting laziness aside and starting an exercise regimen. I like making goals rather than resolutions – they’re more fun and easier to remember and measure.

My top goal this year? To run at least 1,000 miles during 2012. That shouldn’t be too difficult, really, as long as I don’t completely punk out. I officially started my training plan yesterday for the Berlin Half-Marathon, so many of those miles should be under my belt by April 1.

I’m doing a Hal Higdon training plan for this half, one that’s more challenging than my other half-marathon training plans. Having a Garmin watch this time around (I sound like a spoiled American when I say that I now can’t live without it) plus harder training should put a sub-2-hour half well within my reach.

Aside from running, I gotta get more travel under my belt in 2012, in Senegal and beyond. On my list for this year:

1. Cape Verde
I want the beach and the music and some Portuguese food in my belly.

I will hike you, Mount Fogo.

2. The Gambia
English-speaking, pretty, not too far from Dakar.

A busy street in Banjul, the Gambia

3. Freetown, Sierra Leone
Sierra Leone is on the up (hello, they’re getting a Hilton). Comes recommended from a friend.

Freetown, a.k.a. Libreville

4. More travel in Senegal
I don’t want to leave my dearest Senegal having been confined mainly to Dakar. I want to go desert-camping near Mauritania. I want to visit the old town of Saint Louis. I want to go to Popenguine, about 70 km south of Dakar, a place known for cool beaches.


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