Tomorrow I will run my 13th marathon – the Napa Valley Marathon!
I am really excited for this race. This is one of our more local races that I have always wanted to run, but it sadly has never fit in to my schedule very well. When I decided to train for AR50 and made my training plan, I was excited to see that this marathon fit right in and I could finally run it!
I have a bunch of friends also running this race and have watched them taper and carb load all week. Today they are resting their legs, watching movies, trying to keep the race nerves under control… you know like any good marathoner should.
This marathon eve looks quite a bit different for me. There was most definitely carb loading, but there was no sleeping in and resting my legs. Instead my marathon eve was pretty much the opposite.
Friday night, like every other Friday the last couple months, my alarm was set, my clothes were set out, and my Garmin was charged. I had a long run today!
I met up with Layla around 8 which was so great. She had about 8 miles to run and it got me out the door at a specific time and place. Lately the first 6 or so miles of my long run are just kind of tough. It takes me a bit to settle in and find my groove, so it was really nice to have company those miles. We did a paved loop and chatted the whole time, I was very thankful for a running buddy!
We said goodbye and I set out on my own. I did a few more paved miles back to my car where I changed into my new trail shoes, put on my hydration pack and ran to the trails. It was a warm, sunny day and I could definitely tell. I got into a little bit of a funk around 14 miles, but it didn’t take long to get out of it once I was in my happy place.
I wound around the trails, enjoying the sunshine and the dirt under my feet. I made sure to keep it easy thinking about my marathon the next day and just cruised along. I was eating Shot Bloks every 2 miles and took a salt cap every hour. I felt stronger and stronger as I went.
Pretty soon I had to turn around and head back to my car. I continued to feel good and was so happy I was finishing this long run feeling so great. I thought about AR50 and how it’s getting so close. I thought about Napa tomorrow and how I am so excited to run it, but more excited for my friends who have been training so hard to go race fast tomorrow. I thought about my goals for tomorrow and how I want to tackle the race. I thought about how I only have 2 weeks left before taper!
I got to my car with almost 25 miles for the day. If you would have told me last year I would be running that far the day before the Napa Marathon I would tell you you were ridiculous, but that’s not the case anymore!
I came home and refueled right away, then got my stuff ready to go for tomorrow so I can rest and recover a tad.
I have a couple goals for tomorrow:
- Practice pacing! AR50 starts off flat and on road and I need to practice holding myself back. Doing that in a road race is definitely going to be good practice.
- Finish strong! I want to pace myself well enough that I feel better than I have ever felt at mile 25 of a marathon.
- Practice fueling! I have been really good about my fueling frequency lately and I want to make sure that I fuel well tomorrow, especially since it will be a warm day.
- Have fun! I have been having so much fun running and feel like I always have a smile on my face. I want to make sure that continues tomorrow.
I have no time goals for tomorrow, it could easily be my slowest (non trail) marathon ever and that is ok! This is a “training run” for me after all and not a race. As long as I complete the above, I will be a happy girl.
Now I am off to prop my feet up and get some rest.