Tuesday, April 12, 2011

T-6 days, by the numbers

As my mental pre-marathon process continues to unfold, I look back at my training, which is a standard thing for me.  I love the numbers and I've logged my miles since I started training for my first marathon so many years ago.

So let's look at my weekly mileage since Boston training started this year on Jan. 2: 

0-29.9 = 1 week (soon to be 2 weeks)
30.0 – 34.9 = 1 week
35.0 – 39.9 = 3 weeks

40.0 – 44.9 = 5 weeks
45.0 – 49.9 = 1 week
50.0 – 54.9 = 2 weeks
55.0+ = 1 week
Or broken down differently, that’s 1 (soon 2) weeks in the 20s, 4 weeks in the 30s, 6 weeks in the 40s, and 3 weeks in the 50s!

That’s 9 weeks over 40 miles, out of what will be 15 weeks of training (counting this week). When I trained for Twin Cities (Fall 2010), I only had 7 weeks over 40, and that was out of 19 weeks of training. If I look back at training for St. George in 2009, I had 8 weeks over 40, but that includes the race week (it’s a Saturday marathon). Training for Marine Corps in 2008, only 3 weeks over 40 (and one of those was a week with 2 long runs, so not a legit count). Back in 2007, when I trained for Chicago, again, only 3 weeks over 40.

Crazy how much my training (and correspondingly, my finish times, I hope for Boston too) has changed over the years.

The rational part of me wonders how I can be doubting whether I’ll do well in Boston – those numbers don’t lie, right? I’ve gotta get my game face on. I’ve gotta go for a PR and if I bust, I bust. Go big, or go home, right? I didn’t train for Boston to do a cake walk, I trained to challenge myself, and if I fail, I fail, and it’s not the end of the world, I’ll be going to Italy the next day either way. With 9 weeks over 40 miles, I should be able to do this. The physical part of the training is done, and I’m going to work hard on the mental part over the next few days. That means more movies, more reading, more visualizing, more positive thinking. I might try to do the post-it notes on my computer monitor and bathroom mirror, as I did for Twin Cities.

But bottom line is that I'm still having doubts.  Wondering if I can really sustain my goal marathon pace.  Wondering if I can keep my mind focused on the goal at hand and not give up when it gets tough.
We'll know in about 6 days and 8 hours or so!

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