Boston Qualifying Training. I spent the evening decorating Christmas cookies with Wil, they came out great and I only ate two, hard to pass up a cookie that is designed by your child. Later we all settled on the couch watching Christmas shows. A Charlie Brown Christmas and a new special by Disney, “Prep and Landing”, they were both good.
Charlie Brown Christmas, a classic, surprisingly Prep and Landing was equally good, different, but good. Most of the recent animated holiday specials have been lame, either forced or contrived. This was original and a good story, humor for the kids and the parents with a good message. It had me thinking, what are the top Christmas shows (animated), I am having a hard time ranking but if I were to pick five, I would say, Charlie Brown Christmas, The Grinch Who Stole Christmas, Rudolph, Santa Claus is Coming to Town, that is four, number five is tough. Little Drummer Boy was good but is so religion based that they do not put it on TV anymore, Frosty, cute, bad animation though, Olive the Other Reindeer, could make the list, but after last night, I would have to say that Prep and Landing may have taken the fifth spot. As I am laying in bed I try to think of anything that might bump it off the list when I finally drift off to sleep.
Strong winds and heavy rain wake me from my sleep. I look out my window and see a small stream running past my house. The water coming down is heavy, very heavy. I go back to sleep and hope that the rain subsides. I do not want to run my last run on the treadmill.
Waking a little past 5:00 AM, I no longer hear the rain, I feel fresh as I dress, my body a little less stiff than it has been. I feel good. Driving to meet by buddies at LTF for the last training run, it is hard to believe that 16 weeks have gone by since I started this journey.
Looking back, it went by fast, I remember looking at the schedule on the first day and it seemed daunting. I am happy that I made it through the training program healthy; I was able to complete every run, that amounts to 435 miles over the last 16 weeks. I weighed 181 on August 24th and trimmed down to 177, hitting as low as 175, my goal weight.
Meeting Jay we hook up with a new runner, Bill. He and his daughter are also running the Huntsville Marathon on Saturday. Though our pace is a little quick for Bill he joins us. Unfortunately, we go out a little fast, however at the end of three miles I have us exactly at 24 minutes, 8:00 per mile, race pace. It felt good and we carried a conversation through most of the run. Corey who had run with Michelle earlier met us at mile 2.3 and ran in with us, his company was appreciated as well as his support these past 16 weeks.
Finishing, we jogged back to LTF. So many thoughts swirled in my head. The first being, “DONE!”, the training is done, every workout hit, weights, lifted, diet and sacrifice made, and habits such as going to bed too late changed. It has been 16 weeks of dedication. Obviously that is a great accomplishment, but one goal remains. The point of this journey, a qualifying time for Boston, I am confident in my training, but still fear the unknown. I have done my best to eliminate many of the unknown, distance, covered, 5 x 20 miles runs, nutrition, absolutely certain on the evening before meal and fairly confident on the nutrition during the run, where and when to take gels. Cramping, I have had issues with my left leg on the long run, but it is ready. At this point I need to stop analyzing the training, the race and just relax.
On race day I will line up with over a 1,500 others and at 9:00 AM ET, the gun will go off. I know I have enjoyed the journey, the support by my wife, kids, family and good friends these past weeks have been great.
Weight… I walked by the scale, but I feel good.