Monday, April 27, 2009

Just Another Race

18 months ago before the Dublin City marathon CR told me to relax about the race, treat it like any other race, and it'd work out fine. How the hell could I treat it as any other race? It was do or bust as far as I was concerned. I don't think I'd have been able to continue on marathon training if I'd crashed and burned like the last two. All the training I'd done was for the marathon - nothing else mattered.

Fast forward to today and what do I think about Sunday's race? Quite simply, that it's just another race. One difference between now and then is how much I race. Before the last marathon I'd probably been in 15 or so races... 6 of them marathons! Now? In the past 18 months I've been in 22 races, ranging from 3000m on the track, 5 miles in muddy fields to a half marathon on the road. The last few weeks have flown by - usually with 2 weeks to go I'd start getting anxious, counting down the number of runs I'd left to the marathon and then get excited when I could count on two hands. After today's five miler it was the first time it dawned on me that I only have a few more runs to go - maybe 4, maybe 3.

I'm even looking past the marathon already - not worrying about the outcome. What I'm thinking is what a great base I'm going to have going into my track season come the middle of June. I'm actually looking forward to the track this year. Have I forgotten last year already? I was crap on the track. I hated the damn track. Yet now I'm thinking I could be alright on it this year.

Come 12.30 this Sunday I can say one thing for certain, I won't be depressed if things don't go my way. There'll be other races and other marathons (albeit probably not for another 12-18 months). This one race will not make me any better than I am now. All it'll do is tell me what type of time I'm capable of. Once it's done, good or bad, I'll do the same thing - pub, pint and food. I'll forget about running for a few weeks and then I'll be back getting ready to race again.

I've put a lot of work into training over the past 3 months, hell the past year, and I fully expect a decent performance. As my old boxing coach used to say to us "You only get out what you put in"... and I've put a bloody lot in!
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