Words of advice rang in my ears during the 26.2 mile run from Dodger’s Stadium to Ocean Avenue in Santa Monica, California.
“If you feel good, hold back. If you reach mile 15 and you still feel good, hold back.” ~ Coach Andrew Kastor
“Don’t acknowledge the heat. Once you do it becomes a factor.” ~ Olympic Marathoner, Ryan Hall
“On the uphills feel a friendly hand on your back giving you a push up the hill” ~ Professional Triathlete, Andy Potts
“Take it easy. This is just a training run. Take planned walk breaks and focus on being smart and running easy.” My husband, Rick Prince 😉
While those words carried me through the streets of LA, they also kept me entirely in my head. I didn’t realize just how loud that chatter was until after the race. That’s when I learned the course ran past the famous Hollywood sign, Hollywood Walk of Fame, Hollywood High (where the movie Grease was filmed), Grauman’s Chinese Theater and Rodeo Drive. I managed to miss my opportunity to see them!
Though, I guess I shouldn’t be all that surprised. I tend to run in my head most of the time anyways. I just thought taking this race easy meant letting my mind go for a change. More than anything I want to run a strong race in Boston. I didn’t want any mistakes made in LA to cost me the opportunity to live my dream. Therefore, I guess deep down I was afraid of my decision to run a marathon in the middle of a training schedule.
The one thing I was sure of on race day, I worked hard for that BQ and if I wanted to make it to the start line in Hopkinton feeling strong on April 21st, I had to leave my ego at home.
The thought of running a specific time goal for this race crossed my mind more than once while out on the course, but I had to tell my ego to shut-up and let it go. I had to remind myself it didn’t matter how long it took me to finish as long as I finished feeling good.
In the end I met my goals for the day. I held back, didn’t think about the heat and felt a hand on my back gently pushing me up the hills. I did the smart thing (for once) and didn’t let my ego rule the day.
One Last Thought:
I’m not a serial marathoner and yet, Boston will be my fourth marathon in ten months. I never thought I’d be that person who ran back to back marathons. I’ve never had the desire to and don’t actually think it’s the healthiest thing for me personally on a lot of levels. Since crossing the finish line on Sunday recovery has been my number one priority. I’ll start posting more about what I’m doing to stay healthy, how I spent my week after the marathon and what my goals are for Boston, so be on the lookout for more training related posts in the near future.