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December 06, 2005


T minus 4 days and 8 hours, and counting.

The thing about taper week is having so much time on my hands and so much energy in reserve. I've been starting to work on my carbs even before I start fully carboloading. Yesterday I had tendon with a bowl of udon on the side for lunch, and chili and rice for dinner; today I had a donburi for lunch. And we had our last tempo workout before the marathon...3 x 4 minutes with 3 minutes recovery. I really needed that to bleed off the excess energy so I can sleep well at night.

With the excess time I've had, I've been spending a lot of it thinking about and visualizing my best marathon. I see myself running a well-paced race. Negative splits. With enough left to run the last 6 miles strong.

Yesterday, I wore the purple jersey and looked at myself in the mirror. And it surprises me to think that in a few short days I will be wearing this shirt and running my best marathon in my life so far. I know for a fact that it will be my best. Although I have had the best training in years, and am poised to run my best time in years, so much depends on the conditions.

However, I know this. I haven't had so much fun training in years. And being part of a cohesive group, training with a common goal even though we're all of different levels of ability, has really helped me. I've made many new friends and deepened some existing ones, and those will last for a long time. I'm starting this race in the afterglow of an significant accomplishment...exceeding a fundraising quota that at times seemed so insurmountable. And I'm looking forward to seeing all the TNT staff along the course. In my six previous marathons they seemed so ubiquitous...they were everywhere along the course, and the cries of "Go Team!" would energize even those not in TNT. Knowing that this year, they will be cheering for me, makes it even more special.

So even before taking a single step, I already know this will be my best marathon experience. And just thinking about that, mere time doesn't matter quite so much anymore.

But that doesn't mean I won't do my absolute best out there. Rather, I think I was probably putting too much pressure on myself in previous years and that was keeping me from doing my best. Knowing I'm a winner before toeing the line will probably bring out the best in me this time around.

So...sub-4, new PR, here I come!

Posted by Keith at December 6, 2005 08:02 PM

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