Note: This post is sponsored by the Cherry Marketing Institute. Opinions are entirely my own.
It’s been a full three years since I last ran a marathon, and over five since I last ran one hard. Or, to be fair (since they’re all hard), the last time I was last in PR-shape.
Although I haven’t exactly sat around since then, the training I’ve done for ultras has been much more relaxed and slower-paced than what I ever did as a marathoner. Lots of hills because of where I live, but I can count on one hand the number of speed workouts I’ve done since qualifying for Boston back in 2009.
So a return to marathons — to gasping for air during workouts, to hurrying through water stops, and to not walking the hills — will surely be no picnic. But it’s a change, and as someone who will take change over boredom any day of the week, it’s one I’m ready for.
I don’t know if I’m going for PR. Certainly not in this first marathon back; I think it’ll take me two races and a full year to get anywhere close to my 3:09:59 best. I’d love to run Boston again, and because I’ll be 35 next year (whaaat?), 3:09 would get me in again, even under the new, tougher standards.