Marathons #4, 5 & 6 happened for me this year in April, May and June consecutively. While that was never my plan it just evolved into the year of the "Marathon Maniac".
- Glass City Marathon in Toledo (#4) was a nice PR for me at 3:46 and change. Looking back I had lost a little too much weight and don't think I was properly fueled to BQ. I also ran too fast the first 10 miles or so. I still managed to take off 5 minutes of time from my previous PR in Cleveland in 2014.
- Cleveland Marathon (#5) was three weeks later. I ran with the 3:35 pace group for the first 1/2. It just got too hot for me. I pushed as hard as I could that day to the point of throwing up but with a 3:52 a BQ was not in reach that day. No problem will just try again in late June then!
- Charlevoix Marathon (#6) in Northwest Michigan was a fun road trip and little long weekend vacation. I loved this area! I was ready here I think to get it done but I had two things working against me: first, I ran the first 1/2 a little too fast and had some uneven splits. Plus the last hour of the race was hotter than I hoped in the mid 70s. I don't do as well in the heat as I would like. I tried my best but came up a little short with a 3:42:45. Two minutes & change away from the 3:40 qualifying time.
I have prepared more intently for Erie by including more speedwork, faster long runs and a cleaner diet. I have also obviously been cross training with the bike and swim as I prepare to take on some long course tris in the weeks to come.
This last week and a half has been pretty easy physically for me as I taper. I know my body needs to be rested to push as hard as I can. I feel more rested than when I went into Charlevoix. I have been carb loading all week and sleeping well. The weather forecast looks to be cool (high 50s - mid 60s), which is ideal for me. It may rain but rain is not a reason to ruin my day. I have worked long and hard for this BQ this year! The plan is to shoot for a 3:35. If it ends up being a 3:37 or 3:38 I will take it! I will slow myself down the first half and try to run consistent splits. I will push harder the last miles. I will give everything I have. I am ready! No matter what happens I will know that I gave it my best.
Special thanks to Powerbar for keeping me fueled for all these races and countless workouts and to Steve for letting me drag him all over to run marathons this season. He has sacrificed as much as I have for my goal. Nothing to it now but to go chase that unicorn! Stay tuned for the race report next week.