If I have not talked about it enough this week, tomorrow I will embark on my 15 miles. Can you tell I am nervous? Have you had enough of me already - come on Steph really, it is just 15 miles. I know that is what you are thinking. Oh well, at least I have some great ladies to run it with. My fear of getting lost has been quelled with Liz's amazing mapping skills (she is the best). Between chatting with her and Erin and my latest mantras provided by none other than the Ultra Marathoner, I know that I will make it through (staying positive here).
Anyway, last week I spoke a bit about speeds and the right speed that I should be pacing myself at for training and the marathon. I got a lot of great feedback from everyone and then let caution to the wind and just went with it last weekend. The results, I averaged around an 8:40 pace but I was all over the place jumping from the 9ish level to 830s, the last two miles were painful clocking in at 9:13ish, possibly because I ramped it up at the 10th mile with an 8:00 min mile and possibly because my foot and toenail were killing me. Hmph.
The other day I received an email from a very wise, fast, and amazing lady who gave me some great advice (don't you love that about blogging, how others are out there helping you along the way even though they don't really "know" you, its so wonderful, and touching actually. Thanks Colleen!). Anyway, she mentioned that based on my run last week that maybe I should slow it down a bit and try and add about 30 seconds on to my goal marathon pace for training purposes. Sigh, I wish I knew what my "goal pace" was. My goal, FINISH. My "wishful thinking" pace would be 8:30s but maybe that is extreme. So lets just say for simplicity sake that 8:30s is my "goal" meaning I should really be going at 9 min miles for training. I have also heard people mention the importance of negative splits - running the second half of the course faster than the first.
Combining the two I have my outline for tomorrow. Besides just finishing (which I WILL do), I want to go out slow 9:00ish for the first 7.5 miles and then if I am feeling good pick it up to 8:30-8:40ish miles. Honestly, I am not sure that this is the way to go or if it is still too fast, but somewhere in my crazy mind, it sounds like a decent idea. In the end, I have to keep myself in line. I have a tendency to believe or feel the need to GO, GO, GO and that I am not "doing it right" unless I am going "fast" (but isn't that all relative). Instead, tomorrow, I am going to try and be reasonable. To realize I am looking to go 15 miles and do whatever it takes to get there and you know, like hell, I am going to have a blast doing it and chatting it up with the amazing DC ladies at the same time!
Do you ever have trouble keeping your self in check? How do you do it?