Pace Tattoo and Mental Prep

My last marathon, I ran to finish.  I had a goal of 4:30 in mind, but with injury and it being my first race, it was just not in the cards for me.  This time I really think that I can run for time.  I have three, okay four, goals:

1. Beat my previous time of 5:06:57.
2. Hold a steady pace and finish strong.
3. Have Fun.
4. Come in under 4:30.

The final one is the last one on the list because if it doesn’t happen it doesn’t and I don’t want to beat myself up about it.  To help me try to achieve it though I ordered this awesome PaceTat.  They aren’t sold here in Colorado yet, apparently we’re behind the times, so I had to order it online.  I ordered the 4:20 marathon pace chart.  That’s a 9:55 min/mile pace.  Most of my runs I did between 9:30-9:45 so I think aiming to hold a steady 9:55 until I think (hopefully) I can speed up at the end.  So race morning, or probably the night before I’ll put it on my arm to refer to.  This way I can turn off the mile alarm on my watch because I know I’ll just be waiting for the each of the 26 beeps. 

I’m still thinking about joining a pace group but I’ll have this to fall back on if I have to stop at a porta-potty or stop to stretch.  Now I just need to set my watch to beep at me if I start going too fast or too slow.  I’ll probably give myself about 30 seconds to a minute on the slow alarm, but the fast alarm is really important so I don’t burn out too soon.

My Train with Altitude t-shirt also arrived.  I’m excited to sport it at our Inspiration Dinner in Nashville.  I have all my gels, my PaceTat, my t-shirt, singlet. I’m ready for the race…

I printed out the race course and elevation chart. The course is pretty flat though there are a few steady inclines that last for a mile or more.  I’m trying to mentally prepare myself for race day.  I know that the wall may come but I’m trying to give myself ways to overcome that.  It can’t hurt to know where the turns are, where the hills are, etc.  I think I almost have it memorized. 

I keep reassuring myself that I am much better trained and in even better shape than I was last year.  I haven’t run since my 21 miler because it’s just not worth risking pushing my ankle too far before the race.  I’ve been crosstraining my heart out and making sure I’m really working my abs and my back.  I’m going to need both to be strong during the race.  I’m so close to actually having somewhat visable abs. Finally!  All I can do now is eat plenty of food, drink plenty of water and let me body relax before the race.  Only 12 days left!

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