11
Apr
13

Four days away: Monday, Monday

Marathon Day can’t come fast enough.

Everything seems to be point toward Monday. When I woke my daughter up for school this morning, one of the first things she said was, “You better start packing my clothes.”

For me, Monday is the Boston Marathon. For Nina, Monday is the day she gets to go back to Grandma and Grandpa’s house on the Cape for the school vacation week.

She can’t wait, I can’t wait. But we have little choice. Time only goes so fast.

I ran for 1:24 this morning. Very slow, very easy. I even walked the last mile. It’ll probably be my last run around these parts (Groton, Ayer, Shirley) for a while. It’s supposed to rain tomorrow (I might drive to Wellesley and run the Newton hills if it’s not too soggy) and once the marathon is over, I’m planning on taking some time off. At least the rest of April; my knees have been asking for a break, so I will grant them their wish.

As far as the rest of the spring, who knows? All I’m focused on is how to get through the next few days. I’ve had butterflies in my tum lately and have tried to enjoy this taper period as much as possible. Rest is key now.

While running today, I wondered what the elites are doing for these final few days and if they dislike the taper period as much as I do. I know some of the top Kenyan runners appeared at Elmwood School today in Hopkinton for their annual “rock star quality” celebration. That is a fun event. I covered it once as a reporter/photographer. I can still hear the screams of all those kids.

But what is Shalane Flanagan or Kara Goucher or Abdi Abdirahman doing to keep busy these last few days? I guess I’m lucky I have a job to go to in order to keep my mind off Monday. But tonight is my last shift until Tuesday; I’ll have all day Friday, Saturday and Sunday to fill.

Luckily my daughter should keep me occupied (she’ll keep bugging my wife and I, every hour or so, to start packing), and I have to go into Boston to get my bib number and I’m planning to go to Lexington to see my Montana friend, John, who is running his 11th Boston in a row.

I feel like I’m in a good spot mentally right now. The butterflies aren’t as bad as they were on Monday, when, at certain points of the day I was thinking, “a week from today I’ll be running now,”  or “a week from today I’ll be all done.”

I feel confident in my training and, heck, worrying or overthinking about Monday does me no good anyhow. I know I need to sleep well. I know I’ve trained well and smartly. I just need to let it happen.

Come Monday, I know I shouldn’t go out too fast on the first few (downhill) miles in Hopkinton and Ashland. “Let the hills do the work,” I’ve been saying to myself.

Prerace, I know what I want to wear, what I want to send in my bag that goes on the bus to Boston and what I want to discard along the route. It all happens Monday.

Maybe I should start packing, huh Nina?

Running thoughts

Saw an article on boston.com today about what’s the best running music. For me, it’s any song that’s in my head.

I never run with earbuds. When I run, I want to know what’s going on around me. If I’m on a bike path, I want to know if someone’s coming up to pass me. I want to hear the birds and even the traffic if I’m on a town road. I can’t tell you how many people I’ve frightened just coming up from behind while I’m running because they’re in their own little iPod world.

Today the song that was in my head was “History Repeating” by Propellerheads and Shirley Bassey. I heard it last night on my ride home from work at about 12:15. 92.5 The River played the song. (No other station would ever think to play that song. Thank goodness for The River). It’s very upbeat and comes from the “There’s Something About Mary” soundtrack. I bought the CD a long time ago, mostly for that song (and “Build Me up, Buttercup” of course).

It’s still in my head now, actually.

Weather update

Yes! The forecast, which at one point was trending toward the warm side for Monday, is now trending down. And as a HUGE bonus, it’s supposed to be mostly cloudy. The predicted afternoon high is for 61 in Boston. I can’t tell you how much different 60 and sunny and 60 and cloudy feels. And a tail wind too? Another course record could fall this year.

“…it’s all just a little bit of history repeating …”

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