In our house, Valentine’s Day has been more about the Austin Marathon. Obviously, Scooby and I love each other and celebrate that throughout the year. But today, we also celebrate our love of running as we get ready for running (me) and running/spectating (Scooby).
Again, it’s not my first 26.2 mile race– this will be auspicious #8 — but each time is like the first time again because each race is completely different.
Last night I dreamt that I did everything wrong — woke up late, didn’t eat before running, didn’t have time to hit the portaloo, had a hard time parking, couldn’t find my friends before the race, etc. Fortunately, I woke up and realized it was a dream/nightmare before going through the race in that state of mind, even if only in my mind.
To ward off that chaos, I’ve gone over my race plan a few more times, complete with a breakdown of pacing/terrain, mantras, affirmations, nutrition/hydration plan, and pre-, during- and post-race clothing. Everything is laid out, ready for my 4:30 a.m. wake-up call. We should be in the car driving toward downtown by 5:30 a.m., leaving plenty of time to meet friends at 6 and do everything necessary before lining up for the 7 a.m. start.
Fortunately, the one thing that I was worried about, the weather, is expected to be nearly perfect with low 40’s at the start and mid-upper 50’s at the finish. There is a 8-9 mph wind expected, which probably won’t feel great along Lake Austin, but I’ll take this weather for a race any day. You really can’t ask for better conditions.
All that’s left is to get cozy for the Brown household’s premiere of Spirit of the Marathon, a documentary about six people on four continents preparing for the Chicago Marathon, an inspirational journey of perseverence and personal triumph that should help send me off to slumber visualizing marathon success.
Think good thoughts tomorrow. I’m hoping that marathon #8 will be my best yet.