I feel as though Ive been neglecting my blog as of late because I've been too busy. My Spring marathon is less than 2 weeks away now. I cannot believe it. My longest run before the race will now be 8 miles, which seems like nothing. This training cycle has been drastically different than Chicago's in the fall. I've learned so much about myself and training the second time around, such as:
1. More miles will give me more confidence when conquering long runs. I am going to total up all of my miles and long runs this training cycle, but it was quite a bit more than in the fall. My final 22-mile run could not have gone any better, which is a great confidence-booster going into the marathon.
2. Tempo runs are important for success. I didn't run too many tempo runs in the fall, and wanted to change it the second time around. I ran quite a few tempo runs this time around. I am hoping my body is now well acquainted with what an 8:00 minute mile feels like.
3. Diabetes varies depending on the training cycle. In the fall, my diabetes was under control during training. I had to do very little to have numbers that were in range. This time around....totally different story. I've had highs and lows and really bad lows and really bad highs. I've tried multiple things out. I'm hoping my body is strong for race day.
4. I'm in the best shape of my life. I know I felt this way in the fall, but I truly feel like I am in far better shape now. My body keeps amazing me on what it is capable of. I never once dreamed that I could run like I do today many years ago.
5. Roctane rocks. I've made the switch over to using Roctane GU now instead of just plain GU shots. My old stand-by of Razz has now been replaced by Blueberry Pomegranate with the occasional Island Nectar thrown in for good measure. I have not decided if I'll be relying solely on the Blueberry Pomegranate flavor for the race, or if I'll do a combo. I don't know how I'll feel about Island Nectar at mile 22.
6. I'm running this marathon with music. I used to not run with music - ever. Then one day I started because I wanted some distraction. I ran my last 20 and 22 mile training run with my music and liked it. I plan on making a long pluralist this weekend for the race. I can always put it on pause if I want to listen to something on the course, but I am excited to run to my tunes for 3+ hours.
7. Believing and doubting go together. One moment I'm thinking I'll nail my goal time, while the next moment I think to myself there I'll go out too fast and die at mile 20. Then I think about all the training I've done and my doubts fade and my beliefs become stronger.
8. I'm running solo...most likely. There are pacers for the 3:25 group and 3:35 group, but none for 3:30. I am 98% sure I'm going to run by myself. There is a small possibility that I'll start with the 3:35 group, though.
9. The marathon race is small. There are 1800 or so marathoners. The half breaks from the full around mile 10 I think. There are 8,000 half marathoners. Therefore, after mile 10, it will be lonely. I'm fully prepared for this.
10. Is it weird that I really want to beat a half marathoner? I do have other goals, but that is most likely the most ridiculous of them.
11 days to go!