So, here I am just 5 days away from the marathon. I'm thinking of my strategy, my plan, my goals for the Harrisburg on 11/11. I have my running outfit picked out. Oiselle all the way: Tank, arm warmers, and black Rogas. I haven't received my race kit, otherwise I would plan on wearing the Oiselle team singlet. The weather looks great: mid 50's, sunny. The marathon is typically a small race, with only about 1,000 runners, with the full marathon and a relay division. However, because of the displaced NYCM runners, registration has gone way up during this week. Now they are expecting at least 2,000 marathon runners. It should be a fun time, as long as the race director is able to scramble to prepare for all the extra runners.
My best friend Michele and her husband are coming to visit this weekend with their 2 girls. Michele and I normally run races together, but she is not planning on running this marathon. She instead is coming to support my run, and watch my kids for me. I could not ask for a better cheerleader. Just knowing that she is going to be here to support me allows me to relax and prepare for my race.
This is the first race that my husband and I are going to run TOGETHER! He has run several marathons, and normally is much faster than me. But he has been plagued with injuries during this training cycle, and decided a few weeks ago to go ahead and run the marathon, but at a slower pace: my pace. He is convinced that he can pace me to a sub 4hr marathon. I just hope we can run an entire marathon together. And to be speaking to each other afterwards.
We discussed our "strategy" over a dinner date on Saturday night. We discussed that my ultimate goal (Plan A) is to run sub-4. I told him that my plan B is to PR, and my plan C, if all is going wrong, is just to finish. He did not want to hear about B and C. He is an "all or nothing" kind of guy. He believes I am capable of sub-4, and he is determined to get me there. Okay..... So now I just need to convince myself.
I have been looking back on my previous 4 marathon experiences, and the biggest mistake that I have made is the classic mistake that many people make: I went out too fast. By mile 19, I was dying, barely hanging on. My pace continued to slow down, I had to take walk breaks, and I fell apart. So, I am determined to go out slower this time and finish strong. NEGATIVE SPLIT is my ultimate goal. Now I'm just trying to decide how exactly to do that. Should I run one pace for the first half, then a faster pace for the second? Should I split the race into three? 10 miles, 10 miles, and 6.2? Still working it out.
If anybody out there would like to share their thoughts about this, please comment below. I could use some help!
Have you ever been paced by a close friend, or spouse? How did that work out?
Do you have any suggestions about how to successfully negative split in a marathon?