Race day is less than two weeks away. I have my bib number. I’m checking the weather forecast obsessively. This thing is getting real.
I made it up to Whistler last week for a good long ride—165km, most of the course, including the climb up Callaghan twice. It was exactly how I expected it would be: great the first time, savage the second.
All of my long workouts are behind me now. I’m happy with the way swimming and biking have gone. I feel ready—or as ready as I’ll ever feel. And I’m happier with the run than I thought I would be. Yesterday I went out for a 25km run at the end of a heavy weekend. It was hot outside and I was tired, but I managed to hold my run/walk ratio at a decent pace for the entire 25km.
This was a huge improvement over last weekend’s run. Was it the shoes? Haha, maybe. But I also think expectation has a lot to do with it. Last weekend’s run was so hard, that was what I was expecting yesterday. For me, anyway, expecting something to be hard is a good way to go into a workout. Usually it’s not as bad as I think. Expecting it to be easy and then wondering why you feel so horrible—that doesn’t work well for me at all.
It won’t be the run I wanted on race day, that is for sure. I wanted to run the entire marathon. It would be a mistake to do that, because I’m not trained for it and I’d just blow myself out by 15km. I would like to make excuses for what didn’t happen during my run training, but there’s no point. The Achilles injury was entirely my fault, and the recovery has been long and frustrating. That’s the whole story. The marathon will mostly be about survival. Even the people who put together the Athletes’ Guide know it:
What remains to be done: pick up the last items I need (Snickers bars, extra bike tubes, sunscreen); get my bike tuned up; get in one more massage; hydrate; sleep.
Try not to panic.
This is the race I have dreamed of doing for decades. I will be doing it with my daughter, and one of my sons (my stalwart training partner) will be cheering us on. Whatever else happens, there is that.