The Mysterious Marathon

29 November 2006

My first attempt at Boston is imminent. I’m not exactly freaking out yet, but I’m close. If checking the weather forecast every ten minutes ten days before the race is an indication of neurosis, then I’m there.

Incidentally, December 9th in Kiawah (as of 6:50pm today) should feature a low of 43 and high of 59 with mostly sunny skies.

As a child, anxiety dreams manifested themselves in the mundane “I went to school in my underwear” genre. In College, it was “The final exam is today? I haven’t even cracked a book!” Now, I dream of getting lost during a race, being late to a race, or just plain missing the race entirely. In the hazy moments between sleeping and waking, this can feel dreadfully real.

In theory, I should be just fine. I’ve trained hard, diligently following Rick’s Autumn of Pain (© 2006) training regimen (Adapted from Pete Pfitzinger’s program). I’m injury-free, and most importantly, feel satisfied with the color of my shoes. I’ve done pace runs, long runs, short runs, strides, Yasso work, modified longer VO2max work, tempo runs, trail runs, and races. I’ve run in the rain, in the mountains, on a treadmill, in the morning, afternoon, and the middle of the night. I even have the geeky runner’s headlamp to prove it.

The headlamp gives you power, speed, and endurance... really.

According to Guy Avery’s marathon predictor, (based on various factors including most recent ½ marathon time) I’ve got a decent shot at my goal (3:15). I feel strong, I’m really enjoying this taper thing, and I’m determined to run a disciplined race. I should be all set, right?

But that’s the thing about the marathon. It’s a mystery.

I’ve never gone as fast as I’ll go on December 9th at Kiawah. I don’t yet know what will happen after mile 20 (when the race really begins). I don’t really know about the weather, or if I’ll wake up on the right side of the bed. Until the race is over, I won’t know.

But you know, I sort of like that about the marathon.

Until then, I’ll take what dreams may come.
White Space

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