About 14 hours out from toeing the line for my goal half of the year I'm not really quite sure what to feel at this point. After having to make some major adjustments to my training plan in the past several weeks, I'm just happy at this point that I've been able to ward off complete derailment. Some cycles can go as flawless as possible and you can still toe the line and have a crappy race, so I'm not too bent out of shape that I've lost about 120+ miles and have had to majorly adjust multiple workouts.
I'd say that the past 16 weeks have been perfectly imperfect and have solidified the fact that I want to race the hell out of those 13.1 miles tomorrow. Let whatever will be be.
Race directors have sent out several warnings this week about tomorrows conditions, which are predicted to be in the mid 80's. In their words:
"If you are not highly fit or have an underlying medical condition you should consider not running this race depending on race day temperatures."
Not really even too sure what is considered highly fit and if that applies to me or not, so I'm just going into tomorrow flexible and as hydrated as possible. Part of me thinks these warnings are just cautionary protocol, but the thermostat on my car did display this today.
I've made attempts to run races in warmer then ideal conditions in the past, none of which has ever really produced a great result, where I've always finished alive. The only time I ever decided conditions weren't worth the months of training and $100+ entry fee was about 3 miles into the Chicago Marathon of 2007. Temps soared into the high 80's with high humidity resulting in aid stations running out of supplies and runners dropping like flies. Just a few hours after the gun went off, race organizers officially cancelled the race. Runners were told they had to walk and were rerouted to the finish.
This little video just about sums up that day perfectly
I pulled out around mile 10 that year after feeling like death for about 7 miles at that point and decided that no race will ever be worth risking my safety. There will always be another.
With that being said, I'm still heading into tomorrow's race optimistic and hopeful that conditions will stay mild long enough for all runners to cross the line safely. Organizers are urging runners to take walk breaks when needed, take an easier pace and maintain hydration, and be mindful of how the conditions are affecting your body.
Not going to make any decisions about tomorrow until I'm actually living the experience. A big part of me thinks that race directors are just over exaggerating. Call that naive or stupid, but I'm still just not 100% buying that it is going to be 80 degrees at 7 am tomorrow (hopefully I'm not cursing myself later for this).
No real race plan for tomorrow, just a few simple principles to live by:
- Run as naked as possible to prevent overheating from excess clothing
- Bathe myself in plenty of sunblock
- Hit up as many water stations as my stomach can handle, which sadly may not be too many
- Tote along some gu and choke it down when needed
- Don't be stupid and stubborn if the heat is too much
- Have fun whether that means racing the hell out of the course or just taking it easy and step-by-step
At this point all I can say is that I've got nothing left to lose.