Six weeks out from the marathon and I am feeling pretty good about where I am.
Other than feeling like I look like a methadone addict thanks to Dave, I survived today's 18 mile run relatively injury free and did it at around 7.52/mile pace . The last four miles I was fighting cramps in my calves (which is akin to the feeling amputee victims feel when they have an itch on the limb that was removed, given that I have no calves) and hamstrings, particularly on the downhills. The bright side is I was looking forward to uphills at the end as it stretched out my legs. Now if I could just use that approach to make me like eating vegetables instead of french fries. Maybe a Clockwork Orange brainwashing would work.
In the last month, I have done 12, 14, 16.3 and 18.2 mile runs and have thus far avoided (knock on wood, spit on index finger) the usual quad injury and bad cold. A couple more 16-19 mile runs and I should be ready for sub 3.30 although I am still curious as to what the affect of my creatine-enduced weight increase from 170 in December 2006 to 177-180 will have on my time and experience. A 5% increase, even if it is from an emaciated base, has to do something.
While training for my last marathon, New York 2007, I was not particularly inspired or motivated. I had caught my Moby Dick the year before, breaking 3.30, and I had already done New York in 2006. I was excited to do the race with my Dad but getting accepted to the race and avoiding a crippling injury while training had been all I needed to do that. I trained almost enough to do well but didn't have that spark to go beyond 16 miles. And it showed when I crawled home the last 4 miles. This year, despite or maybe because I am going through some emotional, relationship-type issues, I have been super inspired to train for this race because it does matter to me. It is probably not super healthy to bury my emotional issues, many of which I create, in a long run or heavy bench press, but I do it. Endurance sports are part of me that can't be taken away. It's my religion.