Thursday, March 18, 2010

Marathon Preview

Well folks, this is it. I haven't been freaking out this time nearly as bad as I did for my first marathon. I guess that was expected. Of course I didn't run an oly tri last weekend either. I have been enjoying the taper madness this week, but it's time to talk about a solid plan for this race sunday.

It's my second full marathon. The Tobacco Road Marathon starts in Cary, NC which is a suburb of Raleigh. So it's hometown baby! Actually the start/finish area is about a mile from my office. It's at Brooks Park, a small baseball field. It should be a great place for a start/finish area, plenty of room for vendors. There's 3000 people in the race total, 1500 for the half and 1500 for the full.

20 miles of this marathon are on the American Tobacco Trail. The half and full follow the same route for the first 3 and the last 3 miles, the rest is all trail. The trail is as wide as a road but with no car traffic. It's hard packed screenings, so it's softer than asphalt and more solid than just dirt. The total elevation gain on the trail is 300 ft. That means FLAT and FAST.

The conditions are ripe for a nice time. My training runs have been feeling great. I've been following a baseline triathlon training plan, with the run distances taken from a FIRST plan with my own flavor of laziness thrown in. I've been hitting 2 or 3 runs a week (usually 2), which doesn't seem like a lot until you factor in all of the bike and swim workouts. So my aerobic capacity is very high right now. Muscle strength is good, muscle endurance is really good. Joints and tendons are feeling great. Every time I run more than 3x / week regularly, or train for a marathon I end up with strange pains and run in knee braces. Not this time. This is my 3rd marathon training cycle and it has been wonderful.

I'm sure race day will come with it's own surprises. It always does. But I feel prepared for the following goals:

1. PR - 5:07 shouldn't be too hard to beat.
2. 4:3x:xx - I really feel like a 4:30 something is within my reach. Might be able to break 4:30 if I don't go out too fast and don't hit too much pain.
3. Don't Die.
4. No ER visit this time.

The mistake I learned from last time is to drink freaking more while running and when I finish. I stayed hydrated during my only 20 mile run with a full camelbak, and it was almost drained at the end. With 14 aide stations on the full route, I will hit each one of them. They have GU's at some of the aide stations, so 1 gu and 2 cups of water wherever i can get it should help. I want to take at least 5 gu's total. And I'm putting Gatorade in the camelbak and taking Endurolyte capsules whenever I start to feel sluggish. Should need 4 or 5 Endurolytes. The secret I learned in the medical tent after the beach 2 battleship? 3 full bottles of water at the finish line. Get them down in less than 10 minutes each even if you think you're going to hurl. That will rehydrate someone my size.

So nutrition? check. Good course? check. Speedwork done? check. Feeling prepared? i guess so.

The coolest thing about this race? Having my girls at the finish line. They've never seen me race before; logistically it's too tough to get them out there and keep up with my crap. But this time I'm going to be running towards them.

The closing got delayed due to a title thing. So Kelley and the girls are heading to Raleigh tomorrow instead of saturday and I am so excited! It's been a long and tough week; going through it alone sucks. I'm ready for date night friday, play time saturday, and race day sunday. I'll post a report up as soon as I can, and put my time on facebook before then.

Update: We have live athlete tracking! how cool http://tobaccoroadmarathon.com I'll post my bib number once I get it. The race starts @ 7 am, so the first few miles will be run in the dark.

19 comments:

Amber (Girl with the red hair) said...

You're totally prepared for this and you are going to KILL IT! So excited for you, I will be anxiously watching Facebook for your update!

Good luck!!

Heather @ Side of Sneakers said...

You're going to kick some marathon butt!! I'm routing for you to reach all your goals- especially 3 & 4!!!

GeorgiaSnail said...

Start slow and build into this one CJ...you are gonna rock it!

Lily on the Road said...

Good Luck CJ, remember, finish upright and smiling!!! Have a GREAT time!!!

I'm with the Snail, you're going to ROCK IT!!!

Amy W said...

Not sure how I stumbled on your blog, but I am a Raleigh running person too (I use the term running loosely). I will be cheering on my friend in the half, might see you there! I am running Raleigh Rocks half the following weekend. Good luck...

Matt said...

Good Luck!! I'll bet with all of the crosstraining you've done, you are better prepared than even you think. Stay smart, finish strong!!

Wes said...

I love your goals. So similar to my own races. Have a great one! Enjoy it and bring it home!!

Al's CL Reviews said...

You are going to do great!

Sun Runner said...

Good luck, stay relaxed, take pictures, see you on the flip side!

The Enthusiast said...

Sounds like a stellar plan! How exciting that your girls will be there at the finish! :-D

Jess said...

You are so ready for this race. Your training has totally rocked this cycle and you will kick ass! Get it done CJ!

Alisa said...

Looking forward to the race report! I think you have a PR coming your way.

aron said...

have a GREAT race out there!!!!!!

Badgergirl said...

You're ready for this race! Enjoy date night and play time with time with your girls and then go out kill it at the marathon! Can't wait to hear how it turns out!

Retta said...

I'm so very pumped for you and look forward to reading your recap! And seriously, got a little emo when I read about how you'll be running toward your girls! LOVE IT. Good luck, rock star!

Lisa said...

great goals. don't die and don't visit the ER...yeah, definately!!

HAVE A GREAT RACE!!!

joyRuN said...

Good luck tomorrow! CANNOT wait to read how you rock this one :D

Glaven Q. Heisenberg said...

Good luck tomorrow.

And thanks for the kind words, brother.

Xenia said...

So how did you do??