Less than two weeks until I run the Boston Marathon!
Marathon Monday is drawing near. At this point getting nervous or starting to worry about the outcome would be crazy. I have followed my training plan as closely as I could, taking a few days to rest my calf, and some time at the start of the training cycle when I had a bad sinus infection. Other than that time off I have trained hard. I have run my heart out. I feel lucky to have been given this gift to run the Boston Marathon again, this year with Team Stonyfield.
Last October after having a fantastic fall of running and a confidence building half marathon at the Maine Half Marathon I decided that I would train for a road marathon again. I had run a trail marathon last fall at the North Face Endurance Challenge but that is a totally different beast. Having taken some time off from road marathons I knew that I was ready again and began my plans to run the Sugarloaf Marathon. I talked with my coach about running a spring marathon and we began base building. then one day, I opened my e-mail to discover a coveted e-mail to join with Team Stonyfield to race the Boston Marathon again. This was an opportunity of a lifetime and I had to say yes. I quickly told my family the exciting news, messaged my coach and plans were made to start my training. My P.R. for the marathon is 3:33.33. I know that I have more in me. I decided that if I was going to run Boston again that I was going to chase down a dream. I set my sights on a sub 3:30 finish, crafted a plan with my coach and got to work . . .
Now, fast forward in time to today. The final countdown to race day is on. The big miles and super tough long runs are behind me. Now it is time to fine tune but not overwork. We have entered the TAPER.
What am I doing during the taper to be ready for race day?
- Trying to get more sleep. Early bedtimes are a must!
- Staying well hydrated!
- Keeping my meals well balanced and eating healthy snacks throughout the day (including Stonyfield Yogurt of course!)
- Foam rolling as needed (thankfully the adhesion that was going on in my calf seems to have gone away since I got an adjustment done by the chiropractor!)
- No bootcamp during the taper. I don’t want to overwork my muscles with heavy lifting as I will need every ounce of energy and all of my muscles to be well rested.
- Sticking to my coaches training schedule which means reduced mileage while continuing to focus on form and appropriate effort during each workout.
- I may get a massage this week but not too close to the race as massages can actually make you quite sore.
- Visualization. During quiet moments I take the time to visualize my race. Having run the Boston Marathon twice before I know what to expect from the course. This helps to visualize myself running on the course. In 2013 I ran even splits for most of the race and was able to negative split during the second half resulting in a great race with no surprises. In 2014 I went out too fast and wasted a ton of energy at the beginning. I don’t want to repeat my 2014 race experience but instead will be focusing on keeping my body relaxed and strong, my stride relaxed and strong, and also my breathing. I need to trust the work that I have done over the past 4-5 months and to run a smart race.
- Picking out positive mantras for race day–do you have any favorites?
I will still be running during the next two weeks but there will also be a lot of mental preparation happening as well! I have done the hard work and now it’s time to shine!
What do you during a marathon taper? Do you use visualization as a part of your training? How does this help you?