So here we are, two days before Kaiser. My college courses are now in full swing and I have to be honest, I can’t remember the last time I have ever worked this hard. I’ve been mentally exhausted all week from all the learning and physically exhausted too, due to three really bad nights’ sleep. Not due to my child…no, due to my night-owl of a cat. Hmmm.
I think that one of my biggest weaknesses as a runner is lack of confidence in the run up to races. See THIS post before my last 1/2 marathon PR effort. One year later, the same doubts.
At the start of the week, I was a little disheartened about my forthcoming race – I don’t FEEL in PR mode. So on Wednesday, during the Dude’s tennis lesson, I sat down to do myself a race plan. First up, what pace do I need to hold in order to PR? It turned out to be 8.31 minute miles. This is a tall order but I was actually quite stunned. I’d assumed, for some reason, that it would be about 8.20. And a tiny seed of hope sprang up in my tired little heart.
So I’m going for it.
My plan is this.
- I have written down a goal pace for each mile, dependent on terrain etc. The first half of the race is round Golden Gate Park and includes two miles of pretty stonking downhill. As such, I am actively going to try and positive split – using those downhills to my advantage.
- Then we hit the Ocean Highway for 6 miles of heart-sucking straightness and flatness. My goal is to just hang on in there and not fall away. When I ran Kaiser three years ago, I actually didn’t mind this stretch at all, but I’m anticipating it being harder this time because I’m actually racing it. So when I hit the ocean, that’s when I’m plugging in the music. And I want/need to hold 8.30s for that entire stretch. I’ll be tired, this won’t be easy. But I might be able to do it.
- I’ll take three gels – at miles 4,8 and 12. I’ve actually never managed to take that third gel but I’m going to force it down this time. I’m going to carry some water in a plastic bottle and chuck it away when it’s finished.
- I’m NOT going to check my watch every mile (I’ll try, anyway). I’ve calculated the time that I should hit miles 3,6, 9 ,12 and 13 and I’ll write that on my arm. Hopefully those will be the only times I’ll check my watch.
- I have my outfit 90% chosen. Just need to pick my top. I have new neon arm-warmers (which I’ve tested). I love neon.
My boys are both running the 5k. The Dude is very excited about it! And I am one pound away from losing all my Christmas weight so I should be back at my own version of racing weight. That will be a big mental boost for me – on NY Day I was very conscious of those extra four pounds I was carrying. I know four pounds isn’t much, but when you’re short it makes a surprising difference. And flipping henry, how hard is it to lose weight at Nearly 40?
I’m going to spend the weekend hydrating, fuelling and watching Rise And Shine on a loop.
Any my mantra for the race?
See you Monday!!