Thursday Thoughts – Marathon Edition

As I sit here and type this up before the crack of dawn this morning, I can only help but reflect on all the exciting, but at the same time, overwhelming thoughts racing through my head.  The day has barely even started yet and I know it’s going to be a tough one considering how distracted I’ve been as of late.  That can only mean one thing:  race day is less than 48 hours away.  OH BOY.  While I’m only a recreational runner, I take my long distance races seriously.  I think it would be silly not to, considering how much time, effort and money gets invested into each training season to run one race.  I thought I’d share some Thursday Thoughts with you all, things that I’ve been thinking about all week leading up to race day.

  1. The BLOOD, SWEAT, and TEARS will be worth it.  At least I keep telling myself that.   First and foremost, I keep trying myself to really focus on positivity.  It’s helped me through some really long runs, so I have to believe remaining positive will get me through this marathon.  Success rate aside, holding a positive attitude is easier said than done, and I’m trying my best to push through the negative thoughts where I tell myself I can’t do it.  The blood, sweat and tears will be WORTH it.  I’ve been through some pretty brutal training runs this season and they’ve all helped to prepare me for this race.  Harder, faster, better, stronger, #AmIRight?

  2. I tend to put a lot of pressure on myself.  It’s something I’m continually working on and I think running has allowed me to see that.  This race isn’t a life or death situation and the pressure I put on my back adds extra stress and anxiety to my life I don’t need.  However, I’ve got a really specific goal in mind for this race and it would feel incredible to reach that goal!  I’ve been in shape to run this time for the other marathons I’ve completed but I’ve never been as adequately trained for 26.2 as I am right now.  So… pressure on?  Yes.  But,  I need to remember that and remain positive about the potential results of Saturday (Good or Bad).  I’ve also noticed that this pressure tends to remove the joy from running.  Runs like the one I had on Tuesday remind me why running is so joyful and why this kind of pressure is silly.

    3.  Listen to your body.  That’s what I’ve been focusing on this week.  I declared Tuesday to be my final run before race day and I’m getting antsy at that thought.  I’ve been so used to my routine of running before or after work that I’ve had to find other ways to fill my time–walks with friends and reading has definitely helped!  I made Tuesday my last run day because I know how long it can take for my legs to recover even from the slowest, shortest of runs.  I’m instead trying to focus on light walks and elliptical training, and of course Yoga.  Yoga seems to help a little with my distracted mind as well.  While I’m getting antsy, I need to listen to my body and keep reminding myself taking it easy this week will hopefully allow me to light and breezy Saturday morning.  Hopefully breezier than I felt at the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler!

    4.  Remain focused on diet and nutrition–this of all weeks is the week to practice what I preach.  I’ve never been this focused on what I’m putting in my body.  To be quite frank, I’ve never been a proponent of obsessively meal planning or tracking foods eaten throughout the day, but with race day coming up, I’ve been overly conscious (or paranoid) of my dietary choices.  This paranoia is new to me as I don’t frequently worry about much in my life.  This week specifically,  I’m focusing on whole, fresh foods, specifically emphasizing healthy carbs, fruits, veggies, lean proteins and healthy fats.  I also gave up alcohol on April 15th as another way to prepare my body for this race.  The diet part has been mostly easy as I typically eat balanced meals anyway (besides eliminating my after work, pre-run snack ritual of oreos and tortilla chips).  The alcohol part has been the most challenging, but hopefully most rewarding of the sacrifices I’ve made.  From family dinners, to Jewish Holidays, to running group cookouts and birthday parties, it’s certainly been a struggle to say no to all alcohol, especially when surrounded by peers enjoying a beverage.

    5.  I’m going on a mini vacation!  I’ve never really been further south in Kentucky than Covington (which really doesn’t count and is closer to me than many Cincinnati suburbs) so I’m excited to reward my solid efforts with good food and drink.  Plus, bourbon tours!  I can’t wait.

Tell me.  Where should I eat after the race?  What’s your favorite bourbon tour?  Who else gets pre-race jitters (especially since this is a new to me feeling)?

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