After a pleasant 15 mile run on Saturday with the last few miles at goal marathon pace, I can officially say my taper is proceeding nicely. I took Sunday off and went out to dinner with Laura's parents, watched The Masters, and was generally lazy. It was a nice day. I've had some weird soreness behind my right knee and in my right calf so I thought it'd be smart to rest yesterday and just take it easy.
Today I'm going to run easy with maybe some hill sprints thrown in while I continue to obsess about the Boston Marathon. The rest of the week will be mostly easy running with some marathon pace thrown in to remind my legs how we're going to run the Boston Marathon. My goals are set and with a week to go I suppose now is as good of time as any to share them.
Like other races, I like to set multiple goals so if my "A" goal isn't going to happen I still have something to focus on. Plus, a marathon is a long race and there's lots of variables, some of which are out of my control.
My "A" goal is to go 2:55xx. This would be a roughly 7 minute PR. It's ambitious, but definitely doable based on my racing and training thus far. With good weather and smart pacing I think there's an outside chance I might even break 2:55. Now I just have to obsess about my splits for the next week.
My "B" goal would be to break three hours. If it's really windy, too hot, or some other unforeseen circumstance prevents me from shooting for my "A" goal at the start, this is the time I'll be shooting for. If a 6:40-something pace feels too difficult at the halfway point I might regroup a little to try and save something for the hills and shoot for the "B" goal. Honestly, I'd be pretty disappointed if I don't break three hours at Boston. Sure it's a tougher course than Lake Wobegon, but I feel like my training's gone well, my fitness it there, and I'm ready to break three hours.
My goal regardless of how fast or slow my finish time happens to be, is to write a great race report. I don't know if I'll do another post between now and Boston--I might sneak one in once we arrive in Boston. Whether or not I write a post between now and the race, however, I hope to write an entertaining piece on how the race went. Probably not as entertaining as "Duel in the Sun" or this post, but at least interesting to runners. My bib number is 2442 if anyone is interested in tracking my progress. Thanks to everyone for the encouragement and support--especially for my wife who puts up with the chunks of time spent running, my asking her to refill my coffee while giving my legs an ice bath, and occasional two hour naps the day after a long run.