The Road to Boston: Race rehearsal(s)
There are now less than 5 days until the start of the 117th Boston Marathon. Oh right, of course you know that... I've only told you like a million times before! For those who want to watch the event live, you can do so here, http://watchlive.baa.org/ starting at 9:30 EST. It's going to be a good one!
This will likely be my last post/update before the big event so I hope you enjoy it! I/we leave on Saturday morning (early) and plan to drive more or less non-stop the ~10hrs to Beantown in time to arrive for a brief stint at the expo and a ~8k shake-out run. Sunday should be a relaxing and restful day taking in the B.A.A. 5k and mile races whilst trying to stay off our feet and cram our faces full of carbs. Monday morning is go time and all signs point to PB!
Today, I ran the last bit of 'effort' before the race. A run I like to call the "insecurity session" because it is right about now that taper madness fully sets in and we begin to question everything we've done in training and begin to doubt ourselves. So mostly for the security of my sanity, I ran a short (5k) interval at approximately marathon race pace to 'prove' that I'm ready. I did it on the dreadmill which meant it was much warmer and sweatier than I'm used too, but also felt pretty comfortable. Now, I'm mentally psyched up and ready to roll!
Last week (which ended up totalling 142k!), we ran a mid-week long run of 33k and followed that up with a Friday hill workout (the 'Beardsley Hill Special') which consisted of 10 x 600m hills (the approximate distance and grade of the infamous 'heartbreak hill') at approximately marathon pace/effort. It was both challenging and confidence building. In the end, the week was anything but easy and yet I felt and continue to feel great.
I fully admit that I've been feeling/acting/writing a bit arrogant recently but hope you can understand that I am merely excited to see what I can do given my on-form fitness and race results this cycle. I feel that I've set the bar extremely high and am only the slightest bit concerned that I will not live up to expectations (I know there are those of you who hope to see me fail). I've been shying away from making predictions but have been so bold as to say a 2:32:XX is a definite target (but could also be suicide!). I refuse to acknowledge anything more ambitious, but don't think it hasn't crossed my mind. I have worked extremely hard and put in a tonne of training to get where I am today and I truly believe that in a sport such as running, hard work and dedication pays off and is rightly rewarded.
So, barring any unforeseen disaster, I will line up in 5 days intending to push my body to its absolute physical and mental limits. There is a very real risk that I will exceed those limits and could fail spectacularly. If I do, I have no regrets. One way or the other, I will give it my all in Boston. I am ready. I am trained. I am going for it.
Thanks for reading and keep on running.