While running my first Boston I was amazed to find how small the city actually is compared to how I remember it being as a child. Every Wednesday my mom would drive me from Brookline to Wellesley. The drive would take about 30-45 minutes. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would be able to run from Wellesley to Boston, never mind the additional 13 miles prior to entering Wellesley. I also never realized how much of the city I missed as a child. Running a marathon you get to experience a city in a manner that is incomparable to anything else. In most marathons, Boston included, most of the major roadways are closed just for us runners! We get to run down famous streets and see incredible sites. Not to mention that thousands of people come out to cheer us on!
I live in LA but had the wonderful experience to complete my final 20 miler this past Sunday in San Diego. Throughout the run I tried to visualize where I would be throughout different parts of the Boston course, I even tried to visualize heartbreak hill but tended to enjoy looking out over the ocean rather than thinking about running the Newton Hills. I would love to say that I visualized the course as preparation for my race strategy, which is somewhat true. In all honestly though, visualizing the course really helped me make it through that last 20 miler. I find that my last long training week before tapering tends to be the hardest both physically and mentally. Mentally I am ready to race and don’t want to bother with the rest of the runs, but my body is tired, the paces don’t seem overly easy to hold and I know that I have that final 20 miler, ugh.
I don’t know about you but there are times when I update my paces after a race and I swear the pace chart must be wrong! I think to myself that there is no way that I can hold those paces!! I am just glad that my pace chart and coach have more faith in my abilities. I am continually amazed that after running the new paces a few times I find that I CAN RUN THOSE PACES and that that they are not far fetched. Over the next few weeks I hope that I can continue to build my self confidence in maintaining my paces, while staying healthy and strong.