I know I’m about to do a race when I start to sympathize with Cady from Mean Girls. At one point in the movie, she says the following:
“I was a woman possessed. I spent about 80 percent of my time talking about Regina. And the other 20 percent of the time, I was praying for someone else to bring her up so I could talk about her more.”
Replace ‘Regina/her’ with ‘running/it’ and we’ve nailed down exactly what’s been happening in my mind the past few days. The worst part is, it’s only going to get worse until race day, and then after race day I’ll spend another whole week obsessing about the race’s outcome, whether good or bad.
You feel me, right?
In all seriousness, I’m actually am grappling with what I want to do for pacing on Sunday. Do I run even splits? Negative splits? Interval play? Right now I’m leaning towards negative splits because I know my body won’t be thrilled with pulling a fast first mile or two, and even splitting sounds so…boring. Or rather, even splitting sounds mentally brutal.
I’m thinking of doing the following:
Miles 0-3: Run @ 8:05-8:10 pace
Miles 3-6.5: Run @ 8:00 pace
Miles 6.5-10: Run @ 7:50-7:55 pace
Miles 10-13.1: Run @ 7:40-7:45 pace, or as fast as I can manage
I keep vacillating between being nervous and being excited for Sunday’s race, and having a race plan is going to help mitigate the nerves. I may end up doing a shorter/faster version of what Lina and I did during the Chicago marathon (a few miles easier, a few harder) if I sense that holding those paces isn’t working for me. I’m telling myself that I just need to listen to my body (easier said than done, but I’ll try) and be flexible.
I did my last speed workout (and last real workout, really) yesterday on my high school track, and it made me excited about the race because I got to remember how it feels to sprint! I obviously don’t plan on sprinting any portion of the half marathon except maybe the last .1 miles, but just getting that leg turnover amped me up. Here’s what I did: (recovery jog length in parentheses)
1 mile warmup
1200 m @ 6:50 pace (400)
800 m @ 6:40 pace (400)
400 m @ 6:20 pace (200)
4 x 200 m @ 5:50/5:35/5:28/5:28 paces (200)
1 mile cool down
The only slightly awkward part about this workout was the fact that there was a JV soccer game happening on the field inside the track almost the entire time I was running, but…whatever. No one seemed to care and overall, the workout didn’t last long. I also felt old because I saw a student with a ‘Class of 2015’ shirt on, and realized that we are only a few years away from having students born in the 2000’s graduating high school. Yikes.
Anyway, the point of this workout was to get my legs churning, not really to try and alter my overall fitness. I will say, though, that I finally felt like I had adapted to the altitude because when I did my speed workout on this track on new year’s day, I wasn’t able to dip below 7:00 pace for any of my 1200 or 800 repeats, and this time I was able to with what I perceived as the same amount of effort. It makes me sad, this fact, because now that I’m finally back to running normally at altitude, I’m set to return to sea level :(. All that wheezing is going straight down the tubes.
I think I’ll stop obsessing in writing for now and go back to letting the thoughts spin through my head.