Saturday, January 14, 2012

Rock and Roll Arizona Race Preview and Goals

Celebrating before I even run a step.  
Nothing bad ever happens from that, right?
(Picture taken by a complete stranger)

On Sunday, I will be running my 15th marathon and my second Rock and Roll Arizona marathon.  You would think that having ran that many races I'd be a lot faster it would be old hat by now - but just like that dude who spent his life savings on Beanie Babies knowing that their popularity wouldn't die, you'd be dead wrong.  Just like every big race, I'm nervous, and the US marathon trials today only made it worse!

Fortunately though, the expo on Friday had enough highly refined sugar to cause a high and subsequent fall that would make a meth addict impressed:

However, while I am nervous and still riding a slight sugar high it doesn't mean that I am unprepared.  While I wish I had another month, my training has went well enough to be hopeful for big things during this race.  Since Savannah, I've ran 5 solid weeks of training with a few weeks recovery and am ready!  And therefore, I have high goals.

For those new to the blogoroo, and for those of you that KNEW it was coming, here are my definitions of A, B, and C goals.  I always ALWAYS have a range of what I'd like to do on race day.  Just like one of those all you can eat buffets, you're going to be there for a long time. Having no strategy will lead to eating wayyyy too much cheap salad and not nearly enough delicious buffet steak. (Just using the term delicious and buffet steak in the same sentence gives me diarrhea) There are a lot of factors that can swing me from an A goal to a B goal and so on.  Including:

  • Bad weather / wind.  You have to race the day as much as you race the course
  • Poor nutrition
  • Injury leprechaun
  • Poop

My A goal is if everything works right, unicorns and rainbows collide into an orgasm inducing run. Something like this:

My C goal is the time that, if I don’t beat, I’ll be very disappointed in myself.  Something like this lady:

My B goal is a goal that is somewhere between rainbow orgasms and total failure. Something like this:

So, with that, here are my goals for the race tomorrow.  Aggressive? Yes, very very aggressive.
A goal: Sub 3:10
B goal: Sub 3:14
C goal: Sub 3:19

For this race, I'm putting it all on the line and going for broke.  I figure that conditions will never be better for me to run a killer race.  I'm at home, eating my own food, drinking my own wine, pooping in my own toilet, and running in the weather conditions that I train in.  So, my race strategy is to run the first 5 miles, slowly going from a 7:30 pace to a 7:00 pace and then holding on to 7:00 pace as long as possible. I know that I could run 7:00 for 18-20 miles, but the big question is how much longer can I hold it? (That's what she said)  This strategy is NOT the one that I would advise most to use. (Going out 10 seconds a mile faster than goal pace)  However, I feel like I am in the best shape of my life, the last 6 miles of the race are a very gradual downhill, and horrible races make for excellent blog posts.  My pain is your gain!!

So, I know what the crazy runner freaks are saying to themselves: this post has too many words, not enough Shalane Flanagan my A goal is 5 min slower than the current Boston Qualifying time of 3:04.  Whenever I tell anyone that I'm running a marathon they almost immediately ask "Going for your Boston Qualifying time!?"  Honestly?  I'm not there yet.  Believe me, I WANT to run a BQ - but part of running your best race is knowing how hard to push it.

I recently told a friend who is running her first marathon tomorrow that "if it feels hard during the first half, you're running WAAYYYY too fast".  Right now, BQ for me is too fast.  But, I suppose that doesn't mean that I can't blow up, pee my pants, and do the walk of shame while trying!


Laura said...

That is probably a good reminder that the first half isn't supposed to feel hard - I'll keep that in mind.

Good luck tomorrow! I'm hoping for unicorn orgasms for you.

Dean Ouellette said...

Good luck tomorrow. A twisted knee on s. mountain on 12/26 is preventing me from toeing the line, but i will be there cheering. Look forward to hearing about your A report, not C.

pensive pumpkin said...

I want to tell you to break a leg, but I'm afraid you'll take me seriously. Glad you get to poop at home. Have a great Sunday and report back to us soon!

Missy said...

You forgot to say what you are wearing. Sport coat with running shorts I hope.
Good luck tomorrow I hope it I unicorns all the way.
I will be at mile 24 cheering everyone on, possibly wearing a flamingo on my head. :-)
I'll give ya more cowbell.
Good luck!

Erin said...

Best of luck, I hope tomorrow goes great!

Laura said...

Kill it.
Have a blast.
Run like snot.

Dan said...

You're just too damn young.

Go get 'em tiger.


Patty T said...

Good luck tomorrow! I'm really upset you didn't work your picture of the guy that pooped himself in the race into this post. :)

Run Jess Run said...

Good luck!

BabyWeightMyFatAss said...

There will be lots of awesomeness tomorrow!!! Have a great race!!

Run with Jess said...

GOOD LUCK! I always enjoy your race recaps - so I say run hard & bring us lots of enjoyment! :)

Brian said...

Good luck Adam. Have a great race!

The Banter said...

It would totally suck if your Garmin said 3:04.95. Don't be that guy.

funderson said...

Good luck, Adam!!!!

Kim said...

OR you could just enjoy the race and have fun...... Right? ;) good luck tomorrow!

Kim said...

OR you could just enjoy the race and have fun...... Right? ;) good luck tomorrow!

XLMIC said...

"...horrible races make for excellent blog posts."

I love this.

Here's hoping that tomorrow makes for a really lame blog post, Adam. Sub 3:10 with no drama. Ready. Set. GO!!!!

Kathy said...

Good luck Adam. TOday will be my first run (I hope) post injury. Go get em, tiger!

Pam said...

Good luck, Buuuuuuuuuddy!!!! You should be out on the course right now!

Hmmmmm... I wonder if I can stalk you?

Pam said...

Dude, I'm TOTALLY stalking you, and it TOTALLY shows your projected finish time at 3:09:55!

Pam said...

Uh oh. Something happened between 13.1 and 16... :(

MargaretB said...

This is the first time I have visited your blog, but I HAD to take a minute to say Good Luck, today! I loved your preview/goals and can't wait to hear your race report! BQ or bust.

Gracie (Complicated Day) said...

Can't wait to hear your race report! Hope it was A all the way!

Jamoosh said...

I know this is after the fact since I know your results, but it is something I have wanted to mention more than once when you provide a race preview.

I think your A-B-C goal times are too close together.

I am leaving it at that.

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