Saturday was a definite off day, in several ways. No running, and the consequences of having too much fun on Friday night. Spent the day with a gig out in Reston, then dinner and a movie with Joe. I was passed out by 10:30 and didn't wake up this morning until 11:30. Oops. Could have bagged the run but since I'd only gone on Tuesday and Friday I knew I needed to get a solid run in. Several years back I had a particularly tough 10 mile training run on the Custis Trail. If you are unfamiliar, it is a paved trail running from Rosslyn that goes west until it runs into the W&OD trail. And it is 90% uphill, if you are running it to the west. It is quite the butt kicker. Most of the way back is downhill but that chews up your quads pretty quickly, especially having run up all the hills on the way out. That training run was brutal and I felt like I needed some kind of redemption from that first meeting. I had no plans of doing the full ten again this close to the 1/2 so I did 4.95 miles out and back on it in 50:36, and it went pretty well. I was toasted on the last hill back up to Joe's apartment but there were no stops this time, which is a pleasant change. I know 5 isn't 13 by any stretch, but it was something. I haven't decided how many days I'll be running this week since I should be tapering. At least two during the work week, can't decide if a third will tire me out or not. Can I crosstrain on a bike at the gym for one of the three days? It wouldn't be as taxing but I'd still get in a decent calorie burn. It isn't like I can bank any more fitness for the race. That ship sailed a few weeks ago.
Aside from getting a lot of sleep and eating well, I'd really like to use the time to mentally prepare for the race. Given how I've been feeling about running for the past couple of months, my mental game could really make or break this race. I was thinking of trying a little visualizing like the elites do. I don't quite have a grasp on how to do it but if it works for Kara Goucher then I am going to give it a shot. I also want to finalize my power words and mantras. I can't reflect back on my training as a confidence booster, since it was nowhere near as thorough as it should have been. I had 2-3 ten milers and a bunch of shorter runs, none the full distance. So I think the only tools left in the bag are visualizing and verbal cues. Has anyone else used these techniques before? Did it work? Are there any other suggestions you have for pre-race jitters? Right now the plan is to drive up to NY Friday night after work, arrive really late, and crash. I figured it would be better to sleep late that Saturday morning rather than stay in VA overnight, leave early Saturday and spend most of the day before the race in a car. The more time I can get at home with my family the better, I'm not there nearly enough. I also took Monday off from work since I didn't want to jam myself into a car for 6 hours right after finishing the race. I don't think that would be a pretty picture. Sorry for the rambling post today, I'm feeling a little scattered. Going to spend the rest of my Sunday doing laundry and washing dishes. I know, be jealous. Send all the positive vibes you can my way this week, I need it!