Well, this is it. Here I am in Corning, New York, with just 14 hours to go until I try to qualify for Boston.
We drove up on Thursday night in my dad’s motorhome. Four people and two dogs in something not much bigger than a van might not sound like much fun, but the accompanying motorhome trip is one of my favorite things about doing these races. We even drove out to Arizona when I ran that marathon, and we had three dogs with us then!
I did my “last-chance” workout today. If I were on The Biggest Loser, that would mean carrying Jillian on my back, doing some leg presses with Bob sitting on the machine, or pretty much anything that could get me hurt and/or set a bad example for millions of viewers. But I’m not on The Biggest Loser, so I just did an easy two miles with Erin in the morning to stay loose.
Then we hit the expo, which was sort of small but nice, and Erin picked up a new jacket. I met Mel’s friend from RunWorldwide.com, the sponsor. And every marathoner got a half bottle of New York sparkling wine. Hooray for whoever decided to call this thing the Wineglass marathon! Hopefully my bottle will be consumed in celebration rather than in failure, agony, and depression.
Just kidding, kind of. I like to be optimistic but realistic. There is a great chance I’ll qualify tomorrow. There’s also decent chance I won’t. I’m hanging my hat on the fact that I didn’t eat and drink nearly as much during my training runs as will be available tomorrow, so I’ll be able to go longer and stronger when my muscles are getting the right fuel. True or not, I need some thought like this to give me confidence.
I have a pretty good idea of how the first half will go. I should be able to keep up the 7:15 pace for that long without any problem whatsoever. The part I’m unsure about is what will happen after that.
My plan is to run those first 13.1 miles as efficiently as possible, physically and mentally. I really want to avoid those “Today is my day, I know it” thoughts, because the more excited I get early on, the more fatigued my brain will be at the end when I need it most. I made this mistake in the Baltimore Marathon last year, but things are different now. Back then, the 7:15 pace alone was enough to give me a rush of adrenaline; now I’m far more accustomed to it. So I hope I can run that pace, enjoy the scenery, and stay relaxed. Once I hit the halfway point, assuming all is well, I’ll let the adrenaline surge as much as it wants, and hopefully, take me to the end in under 3:10:59.
I can’t imagine how great it would feel to qualify. I’ve envisioned it a lot in my head, but I’m sure that won’t come close to how the real thing feels. And if I don’t qualify, I won’t be embarrassed or ashamed. And no excuses. I’ll take responsibility and start thinking about the next race to try again.
So that’s it. That’s really all that’s going on in my head. The weather looks good, so all that’s left is to get a good night’s sleep and to get out there and do it.
I want to say a quick thanks to Holly, who sent me a wonderful package of goodies on the day I left for New York. Along with a really nice note, Holly sent me some fine organic chocolate, Clif Shot Blocks (which I like so much better than Gu’s and which I’m planning to eat during the race tomorrow), and my favorite, fully-caffeinated Caribou Coffee. Getting this package and reading the note really made me smile; it’s so neat when I realize that this blog world is actually the real world. Thanks Holly, for making my day!
Holly sent me the note to thank me for helping her get her new site set up, and that was actually what inspired me to start Health Blog Helper. And wouldn’t you know it, Holly is going to be interviewed this Monday as part of Health Bloggers Dish, the series Alison is doing on Health Blog Helper. So check that out on Monday!
Also, Holly is running the Twin Cities Marathon tomorrow, so wish her luck!
Alright I’m outta here; gotta eat and hit the sack. Hope to bring back some good news tomorrow!