Thursday, October 29, 2009
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
I'm not sure what mile of the Mohawk Hudson River Marathon this was but I can tell you that I was running with that crew of guys behind me in the red and orange shirts for a really long time so either I was slightly ahead of them at the beginning of the race or I had just passed them towards the end but special thanks to Jack, who posted a link to this photo under the comments section of a previous post. I am never a fan of my race photos so I rarely ever purchase one. I always end up at some weird angle where I look like a total slouch, barely lifting my feet off the ground or the camera makes me look 50 pounds heavier than I am, or like at Timberman, my "aero" helmet happened to actually be slightly crooked making me look like a complete rookie tri dork (note: I also wore compression socks, not for performance benefit but for recovery, I had a 20 mile run and a 45 mile week scheduled immediately after the half iron so there was a reason behind racing with them other than being a total geek**) so it was nice to see a picture that was actually pretty decent and you also get to appreciate the beauty of this little known course. It's not often you get to run an entire marathon on bike trails along the water. Awesome!
Still on the topic of race photos... why is it that you can have this great finish picture yet the time is not accurate? Can they photoshop that for my actual time? I don't want to buy a picture of myself crossing the finish line where the time reads and hour slower than what I actually did because of the wave starts. I was happy with that 5:54 in the heat that day, why would I want a framed finish picture that depicts me as much slower? Nuts. I even tried to time this one out so that I was not pressing "stop" on the watch as I crossed the line, that's my usual picture. Me, looking down at my watch.
As a veteran triathlete since 1995, I apparently still have much to learn. What I learned from my race photos at Timberman and the Central Park Mini 10k this year:
- The minute or two I would have saved with the aero helmet was completely negated by the positioning of said helmet on my head. I am outlawing aero helmets for myself in the future. Also, the yellow is terrible and does not match my outfit.
- Speaking of outfits: the black socks and the white compression sleeves are a fashion no-no. Horrible.
- The yellow helmet would have matched my bright yellow Newton's but thankfully I am not wearing said crooked yellow helmet on the run.
- Compression sleeves, dorky aero helmet and Newton's. Yikes. I am a tri geek. Admission to the truth is the first step in rehabilitation.
- I love the Newton's though, time for a new pair...why do they have to cost so much though? Ridiculous!
- The gel flask and the electrolyte tabs container stuck in the left pockets of my shorts make me look like I have (a) strange growths on my thighs or they can (b) make me look many pounds heavier than the 12% body fat frame that I am. Next year: screw the efficiency of reaching down to slip out the containers- it's back pockets all the way in the hopes of capturing at least one decent bike picture.
- **Compression socks look absolutely ridiculous. If it weren't for the fact (speaking as the professional exercise physiologist here) that they do help speed recovery, then I would not be wearing them at all, nor would I take out the time to put them on in transition. Since Timberman was for shits and giggles in the middle of my marathon quest and I went in completely untapered and went right out of the race into a ginormous week of run training, I wore them in the hope that it would help my legs recover quicker. If you don't believe me and are going for the "Jen is a total tri geek" theory right about now, then refer to exhibit A at the top of the post, no compression socks. I'm not saying "never again" though, as I don't know what I will be doing after Syracuse next year yet AND at about mile 20 of the marathon, my shins and calves were taking a beating and I was wishing I had a little compression on, but for the sake of the quest for the perfect bike photo, I will have to skip those next year.
- Finally, marathon skirts are just way too girly for me. Looks cute on the rack, not on my slouchy frame. I'll stick with the compression shorts or regular running shorts in the future- no more "cutesy" run outfits.
Talk about getting off on a tangent- this was supposed to be a blog about recovery week three. I hope you at least had a good laugh over my ridiculous race photos.
Ran 20 miles last week, cycled once, yoga once, swim: ZERO. Wtf? I have to get my arse back in the water, swimming is one of the best marathon recoveries there is! Sadly, the endless is out of commission yet again, so until Dave fixes whatever it is now, I can't swim at home. My other options are back at Sayville masters but I have not been motivated to rise and shine at 4:30 am yet. I figure I will bask in the glow of post marathon bliss for another week before the training schedule resumes for Boston and I am limiting the early morning wake up calls for now. Lab pool: can do on Wednesday nights after seeing clients but I always feel the pull to get home by 6 on those long days and see my little man, and my big man too. Lots of excuses for no swimming, I know. The Y? Nah... why pay $15 bucks to swim when I can swim masters for $8 a session or for free at home? Wait, I'm not doing either! Ha!
Rest Monday, ran 5 in 43:30 yesterday (hmmmm a new "easy" pace/training effect?!), rest today (cold number 2- my immune system is still in the toilet I guess). Shooting for 21-25 miles this week, still keeping it light and easy, looking forward to getting some snap back into the legs by next week. Other goals: take the mountain bike out for a spin and get back in the water this week!
Next up: CenterMoriches 10k- November 8th. Good luck to all the NYC marathoners this weekend!!!!!!
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Last night I did not feel like doing a thing. I wrestled with myself for awhile. I have this sense of guilt that creeps in when I sit down in the recliner in front of the television if I did not train. Yesterday, I taught all day, went to the lab and taught some more, got home around 5:30, took care of Van's needs until 7 pm and then the subconcious thoughts started to creep in....
- "Go ride the computrainer for an hour, just ride easy, maybe the Florida 70.3 course, nice and flat"
- "An hour is too long today, I'm tired, didn't sleep enough (tuesday night), just ride 45 minutes"
- "I only ran 3 miles on Tuesday, that's nothing, have to do at least an hour....rested on Monday too!"
- "Run 40 minutes....you'll burn more calories"
- "Too tired to run, it's 7:30 now, not enough time for the bike by the time I get dressed and then have to put Van to bed, just do yoga, run early in the morning."
- "OK, favorite show on at 8 (So you think you can dance? I love it, probably because when I dance I look like this:
watch Dance show, then do an hour worth of Bryan Kest yoga"
"Record Glee and get downstairs, wow, I'm tired"
- Glee comes on.... "OK watch 5 minutes and get downstairs"
"Glee is too entertaining, far fetched from actual teaching but still entertaining. Forget the yoga just get up at 5 and run."
"Well, since I'm not exercising (and why not rest! I just did a marathon, this is the first training break I've had in 6 months! Soon I will not have the option of the day off so take it!) go get some of those hershey's kisses...."
- "Eat, and fully appreciate the 7 chocolate kisses with absolutely no exercise today"
- Go to sleep
- Alarm goes off.....
- "hmmmmm go back to bed and try and fit in the run this afternoon??????"
- reset alarm for 5:50
- "get up! too much to do! get up!"
- I got up.
Ran 4 easy this morning, I feel pretty good. Running 6 tomorrow, cycling a bit Saturday- a swim too, run long Sunday 7-8.
Back in the groove....
Saturday, October 17, 2009
6 days into recovery from the marathon and I am thinking about the future, I am thinking about how far I have come to this point and where I want to go with it.
Many years ago, when Dave was running it, Boston was a pipe dream for me. It only became a goal after breaking 4 hours at Chicago last year. I've learned a lot about myself in the last few years and I learned even more about myself last Sunday. Running has never come easy for me and what I learned is that running is not easy for anyone, some people just go a little faster than others. As long as I am going as fast as I can, pushing through and managing pain, then I am a runner. It's also a little more than that: I BQ'd once and like any good scientist, the results are only valid if they can be repeated. I want to be a consistently good runner and I also want to be a good runner off the bike. These thoughts came about today while I was riding the last 25 miles of the Kona course on the computrainer. Qualifying for Boston was my entry criteria back into another Ironman. Why would that be? I am not satisfied with a 12 and a half hour Ironman. I want to be faster and the biggest gains in Ironman for me are going to come on the run. In 2005, I had a very successful Ironman Lake Placid. I trained hard and took 20 minutes off a previous best on that ridiculous course. When I finished, I told Dave I was taking a break from Ironman until I was 40 and I was only going back if I could qualify for Boston because for me, that meant my running had really improved, improved enough to run with the best marathoners in the United States. BQ: check.
So now what?
I started shaping my goals while riding along easily averaging 150 watts on the trainer. I mentioned the power output because it got me thinking about cycling and what I might be capable of there. I haven't really ridden much at all since Timberman, as a matter of fact, the Kestrel still has the race number clear taped to the frame from the day of the race. Fully concentrating on the marathon, the only time I cycled throughout September and the earlier part of this month was for a recovery workout once per week. I also made sure I rode on the regular trainer and not the computrainer. It's much to tempting to keep your watts at a certain level when you can see them, to be a true recovery effort, for me, I rode by feel on the regular trainer where I wasn't thinking about how far or how fast I was going. Easy was easy.
Today, feeling a bit better, I decided to chew up 75 minutes in Kona. Much to my surprise I was holding some decent wattage for an easy ride 6 days out from a hard race. That got me thinking about how much I will improve with some good bike training which lead to the thoughts about training and what I plan to do this year. Looks to be shaping up like this:
- Another 6 months of dedicated run training. I don't want to just show up at the Boston marathon to run "whatever". I need a goal to work towards this winter. Boston is wicked hilly and hills have been a limiter for me. I don't want to set a goal for Boston that I know is achievable, I want to set one slightly out of reach to keep the fire under my arse. If anything, I'll continue to work hard to achieve the unknown and in the process I will improve my running further. I am going to train myself this winter to have the capability of running 3:45 on that course in the attempt to re qualify myself for next year. It's a big goal: Boston is notorious for unfavorable weather conditions as well at the punishing downhills at the beginning and the steep hills starting at 17. Can I do it? Who knows? But I am going to give it a good go.
- Post Boston, the return to being a full fledge triathlete. I've missed it, that's good. I have raced one to three triathlons every year since 2005 but I haven't really been focused on a specific goal like I have with the marathon. That needs to change. I'm signed up for Syracuse 70.3 in September of next year. I need some more time to figure out what my goals are for that race but I would like to stick with the "slightly unreachable" theme. So far the plan is to hit the bike and swim training after Boston, race several shorter triathlons throughout the summer (maybe some Xterra too) as well as some strategically placed 5k to 10k distance races and really enjoy myself.
- Third goal for 2010: break 1:45 for a half marathon in October. That type of run training will fit in nicely during the lead up to Syracuse.
- Beyond: While I was riding and thinking about my goals for next year I started thinking about what I would like to do at least once in my lifetime in triathlon. I used to think Boston was unreachable at one point, it became a lifetime goal. Kona seems pretty unreachable right now, I would like to make that a lifetime goal. The seven year plan, it may take me that long, but I am going to do it!
Thursday, October 15, 2009
I figured that I would chronicle my recovery process on the blog now because you can't have training adaptations without proper recovery and I want to get the full benefit out of Sunday's marathon in about 3-4 weeks time. It typically takes me that long to completely recover from the wicked long endurance events like marathon or ironman.
On Tuesday, one of my colleagues asked me if I was going to take a break for awhile before diving into Boston marathon training and my response was "training for Boston starts today". It's true, what I do now for recovery can set the tone for the training leading up to Boston. When I started on this quest last year, I built a decent base through the winter and focused marathon training started May 1st, 6 months ago. Boston is April 19th- almost exactly 6 months from now but I am not apprehensive at all, I'm psyched!! I have found so much joy in running that I look forward to being able to resume those 30-50 mile weeks and in order to do that, I have to make sure my legs have had enough recovery from the trauma of 26.2 miles at tempo just 4 days ago.
Monday and Tuesday I took completely off, my level of fatigue was very high and my restless, overworked legs did not cooperate with sleeping well on Sunday and Monday, contributing to the fatigue. I was also extremely stiff, to be expected, the DOMS kicked into high gear by Tuesday and standing on my feet teaching all day did not help my lower legs. I think I mentioned the compartmentalized edema I had Tuesday night. Ibuprofen, compression socks, ice and a good night's sleep did wonders. By Wednesday morning the stiffness and swelling was gone. I had some energy yesterday and after work I hopped on the trainer for a 30 minute super easy spin last night and gave the elliptical a whirl for 5 minutes and that was enough, perfect actually. HR's hovered right around 120 bpm, I barely broke a sweat but I know that the increased circulation to my legs helped to flush out some of the metabolites from the race. Compression socks back on and off to bed for a solid 7 hours sleep.
Today, I felt pretty normal, I even felt like running. Craving the movement, I decided to repeat the 30 minute spin on the trainer. 30 minutes turned into 45. HR's still low 120-130. Stepping off the bike I decided to give the legs a little test and strapped on the runners. 2 minutes into my easy 10 min/mile pace I felt just OK, by 4 minutes I knew that I was not ready to run. My quads and hamstrings are fine, so are my calves, my lower legs are just not ready for the impact stress of running yet. As crazy as it sounds, my muscles are fine but it feels like my bones are tired! I think it is the smaller stablilizing muscles, ligaments and tendons in my lower legs and feet that are deeply fatigued. Honoring them, I stepped off the treadmill. Not ready yet.
No rush, tomorrow I'll back off and do a bit of yoga. Hit the pool for a swim on Saturday and with a few more days rest I think I will be ready to run easily for 30 minutes on Sunday. I hope, but if my body tells me otherwise that's OK too.
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Sunday, October 11, 2009
Thursday, October 8, 2009
Racing, no matter what sport, forces you totally into the NOW. Continually monitoring the body while working at peak performance levels does not leave much room for any other kinds of thought. I look forward to being and keeping myself in "the zone".
In the meantime, every sniffle, muscle ache and twinge sets off a small alarm. The coach in me knows it is quite normal to feel these "pains"- after weeks and weeks of high volume training, the taper finally allows the body a chance to fully recover and heal. It is very normal to experience wandering pains and stiffness. It is also quite normal to wonder if I have done enough and second guess myself, I also wonder if I have done too much, especially in light of contracting a cold in the week before my A race but what's done is done, no amount of training now will effect what happens in four days, I just pray that my peak will truly be achieved on Sunday, with all the stars and planets aligned and perfect weather as well. I have high expectations for Sundays race, the last 8 months have been geared towards it but what I really need to do is let go..... my best races this year have come from having no expectations just letting the day unfold as it will, trusting in my training and believing in myself.
This afternoon, I wound back up at my allergist's. The "tickle" and tightness in my lungs set off one of those alarms. Based on what happened to me early last May, I don't fool around when it comes to my ability to breathe. Dr. Byrne heard me coughing in the waiting room. I mentioned to him that I had to hit the inhaler a few times today. I told him that I was actually feeling better yesterday until this dry cough started, all too reminiscent of asthma symptoms. He listened to my lungs, made me breathe hard and then I could hear the crackles and the wheezing as well. He said, "I'll be right back" and returned a few minutes later with the nebulizer. Drat.
I did feel better after it however, my O2 sat back up to 100%. I casually mentioned my marathon is this Sunday and that not only got his attention, but I got the one eyebrow raise. My response to that was "don't even say it". He didn't, he knows me well now. He thought that since I was better and was now obviously not, that the virus made me susceptible to a bacterial infection. Nice. Not what I wanted to hear. He wrote me scrips for a 5 day prednisone taper pack and a 5 day Zithromax pack and started to warn me that although I will feel better in a couple of days, the meds may take me off my ... (picture me trying to interrupt him before he said it)... peak. Regardless, I am going with my original thought process that I WILL be better by Saturday.
I left the office and promptly put a call into my friend and nurse, M.E.. I almost considered not taking my doctors advice and not taking the Z-pack but with continued coughing I decided that it would be very foolish for me, I don't need a repeat of a 2 am visit to the E.R. Spoke with Kelly, she asked me about the possibility of skipping this race and doing another, but I really don't have too many options and outside of this minor chink in my armour, I feel really strong physically and mentally. I would really like to go, run well and enjoy a rest for a couple of weeks. I would really like to stick with Plan A and qualify and spend my winter season marathon training. I am ready to roll, I am tapered, I have been training for 8 months for this race, the weather is going to be perfect and I am doing it. Whatever the day brings it brings, I will turn myself inside out for the attempt need be and I can deal with the aftermath, well after.
The best thing of all, is I enjoyed the process, the entire thing. I enjoyed all of the training leading up to this race and even though I haven't raced yet, I can't wait to marathon train again. Sunday is the icing on the cake! Bring it on!
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
Linda Mermelstein, MD, MPHActing Commissioner Suffolk County Department of Health Services225 Rabro Drive EastHauppauge, NY 11788tel: 631-853-3005fax: 631-853-2927
2009 H1N1 Influenza Virus Fall Update - #4 Monday, October 5, 2009, 4:00 P.M. Linda Mermelstein, MD, MPHActing Commissioner, Suffolk County Department of Health Services
- 1. Suffolk County Department of Health Services just received its first delivery of 1,000 doses of the H1N1 vaccine today. The first doses we received are the Live Attenuated Influenza Vaccine (LAIV) that is appropriate for healthy people only between the ages of 2 and 49 years of age. In terms of prioritization, this form of the vaccine will be utilized in vaccinating healthy people between the ages of 2 and 24 years of age and those between the ages of 2 and 49 years who are caretakers of children under the age of six months. This form is NOT appropriate for pregnant women, those with chronic medical conditions, including asthma, and those who have contact with others who are severely immunosuppressed. The department will distribute the vaccine it receives to our health centers and Suffolk County pediatricians and primary care providers so that it can be administered to those people for whom it is indicated. Further deliveries of vaccine including the inactivated influenza vaccine (the "flu shot") are expected in incremental quantities in the near future.
- 2. Current key findings from flu monitoring systems in New York State for the week ending September 26, 2009 showed laboratory-confirmed influenza activity reported in 30 counties (including NYC). Testing performed on specimens submitted by ILINet (sentinel) providers revealed no reports of 2009 H1N1 influenza last week and a total of 5 reports of 2009 H1N1 influenza for the season to date. Influenza activity was categorized as regional; this means the activity is less than widespread (highest category) but more than local (lowest category). In general, flu activity is increasing and is above baseline for this time of year. This is also reflected in national data collected by the CDC. In addition, 99% of all subtyped influenza A viruses being reported to CDC are 2009 influenza A (H1N1) viruses.
- 3. The New York State Department of Health on Monday, September 14, 2009, established a process by which licensed health care providers in New York State may pre-register in order to express interest in obtaining free doses of the H1N1 influenza vaccine, which is expected to become available the first week of October. The website to pre-register is https://hcsteamwork1.health.state.ny.us/pub/top.html. Health care providers should note that there is a separate pre-registration process to administer the H1N1 vaccine to adult patients (age 19 years and older) because New York State Law requires all vaccinations of pediatric patients (less than 19 years of age) to be entered into the New York State Immunization Information System (NYSIIS), the state’s immunization registry. The Suffolk County Department of Health Services urges health care providers to make plans now to vaccinate priority target populations against the H1N1 virus as soon as the vaccine is available.
- 4. The World Health Organization (WHO) reports 4,108 deaths from the H1N1 virus worldwide since April of 2009 and 28 cases of Tamiflu-resistant infection have now been documented out of 10,000 2009 H1N1 influenza isolates tested worldwide. The United States has ordered a total of 195 million doses of H1N1 vaccine, primarily in the injectable form, with about 50 million doses expected for delivery by mid-October. Five of the 25 companies producing the H1N1 vaccine around the world, are in the United States, and these five are the same five who annually produce the annual seasonal influenza vaccine.
- 5. Nationally, 27 states are currently reporting widespread activity; again, this is unusual for this time of year. The H1N1 virus that is circulating right now is a good match to the new vaccine that has been developed, and is now being manufactured and distributed. The H1N1 vaccine is an influenza vaccine, developed utilizing the same methodology as the seasonal influenza vaccine, except that it is directed against this new virus. The new virus was isolated after the seasonal flu vaccine began mass production and so had to be distributed as a separate vaccine. Individuals above the age of 10 years old who get the H1N1 vaccine will only require one dose; those nine and under will require two doses for adequate immunity.
- 6. Questions from the general public or from health care providers about H1N1 influenza should be directed to a special NYSDOH H1N1 Influenza Hotline, 1-800-808-1987, which is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The Suffolk County Department of Health Services also has a Suffolk County H1N1 Influenza Hotline, (631) 787-2200, which is currently open on weekdays from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. Should the need arise, we will expand hours as appropriate.
- 7. In Suffolk County, the H1N1 vaccine is expected to be requested and administered by physicians and other health care providers through private practices, hospitals and medical centers, participating retail pharmacies, community health centers operated by the Suffolk County Department of Health Services, mass vaccination PODs (Points of Dispensing) that will likely be held throughout Suffolk County, and at those public and private schools that wish to do so (Suffolk County schools interested in holding an H1N1 vaccination clinic at their site should have their school physician or nurse practitioner pre-register for the H1N1 vaccine with the NYSDOH and alert our department of their interest and intent.) The NYSDOH has said that it anticipates being able to assist local health departments in these vaccination efforts by providing supplementary vaccinators and clerical and managerial staff. Accordingly, the Division of Public Health has begun interviewing nurse vaccinators and clerical staff to assist in the vaccination effort.
- 8. As an important reminder, the new H1N1 influenza vaccine that will be made available shortly is not intended to replace the seasonal flu vaccine – it is intended to be used alongside seasonal flu vaccine to protect people against illness and disease. As the seasonal influenza vaccine became available in Suffolk County, our department began to administer it at mass vaccination seasonal flu POD clinics that will continue through November, 2009. The location and dates for these PODs can be found on our department’s website, www.suffolkcountyny.gov/health. The H1N1 vaccine is not mandatory for the general public but is heartily recommended. The CDC has stated that it will “provide the public with transparent information about what we know and do not know about the safety and efficacy of Novel H1N1 vaccines to help them make informed decisions.” Those who choose vaccination for themselves or their children will be screened for contraindications (such as egg allergy) and will receive information sheets describing the vaccine’s risks and benefits, signs and symptoms of adverse events to look for following vaccination, and how to report adverse events. Experts here at the Department of Health Services conclude that both seasonal and Novel H1N1 influenza vaccination is the most effective way to protect oneself and one's loved ones against the discomfort and serious complications of both seasonal and Novel H1N1 influenza.
- Suffolk County Department of Health Services’ Division of Public Health: 1-631-853-3055(Monday-Friday, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm; no weekend hours)
Sunday, October 4, 2009
I've been diligently fighting off the cold for the last week. Being surrounded by sick, coughing/hacking and nose blowing kids for a living makes it difficult to avoid the common cold despite how many times I wash my hands in a day. With the stressful last week I had, coupled with not enough sleep, I was a goner despite the extra Vit C, garlic, Vit E, neti pot sinus rinsing and green drinks that I had all week.
This morning I woke up with the proverbial scratchy throat. The night before I slept with my neck in a funny position for a few hours and I can barely turn my head. I started checking the weather report for Albany for next Sundays race:
From W at 8 mph
I like the 58 degrees, I do not like the humidity nor the rain. No sense in worrying about it though, I cannot control the weather, the day will be what it will be.
You see, that's the whole thing about long distance racing and hedging all your bets on one day that you spent the last 8 months training for: sometimes sh** happens during a long distance race that you have no control over. Ironman has taught me well. In order for me to BQ next week, I need perfect conditions along with a perfect, finely tuned body and engine. It's like Haile GebreSalassie going for the WR, that sub 2:03 at Berlin. If it wasn't so hot, he probably could have done it but as fast as Haile is, he has no control over the weather either. In the end, the heat was too much over the second half of the marathon despite all of his preparations. Live to fight another day.
I realize that I sound profoundly negative about my A race next weekend but actually I am just being realistic. I am confident in my training and my fitness, no matter what happens, I would not change a single thing about my preparation. This is the best running shape I have ever been in EVER. I am pretty psyched about that. I will get the BQ, whether or not it will be next Sunday remains to be seen. 2 years ago I would not even have entertained the thought of running fast enough to break 3:45, now I know I can do it, it's no longer a question of "If" it's a question of "when". I have thoroughly enjoyed the entire process. The desire to qualify for Boston came out of the desire to be able to run better of the bike during long distance racing. I am a better runner than I was last year so that goal has been accomplished. I am also not finished, I think I can be an even better runner next year.
As I wind down through the last seven days of taper prior to the marathon, I can't help thinking about my state of nervousness. Prior to a long distance triathlon or even a sprint race(!), I have to admit that I am much, much more nervous than I am about running 26.2 next weekend. It must be the technical aspect of the sport of triathlon. There is so much more to be anxious about when your A triathlon race is dependent on the functioning of the equipment you ride on and how quickly you can transition from swim to bike and bike to run. There is so much more anxiety about race day nutrition and how many calories you are taking in and the preparations ahead of time to do so. As much as I am checking the weather now for next weekend's marathon, there is so much more anxiety concerning rain and descending a mountain on a bike at 45 mph. All I need to do next weekend is strap on my shoes, put my gel flask in my pocket and be prepared mentally and physically to run 26.2 at 8:20-8:30 pace. There is a lot of comfort in that fact. I am ready to run, I've been ready for the last couple of weeks, I am enjoying the taper and I am beginning to feel the strength and the desire for my legs to move fast returning. I have been mentally focusing on finishing strong despite the pain I know I will endure, bring it on, most people will never get to experience pain that you can overcome by will. I am visualizing a finish, victorious, arms raised in triumph across the finish line with the clock reading something under 3:45:xx.
I am ready.