I've been doing a lot of thinking the past few weeks about what a realistic goal for Columbus is. There are all kinds of nifty predictor calculators I have been driving myself nuts with and of course all my wonderful friends who would love to see me do something spectacular. But after looking at what I have done in the past and based on how racing has gone this year I am comfortable with setting my goal around 3:05. I can't lie I wish I could make the goal start with a 2 or the pace start with a 6 but I just don't think I am there. It is probably no coincidence that this goal is also what my coach told me would be realistic (though he would likely prefer I keep the goal to myself, that just isn't my style, if I come up short, I come up short, it is certainly not the end of the world, much better to know I have family and friends rooting for me to make the goal, I'll take any and all fast vibes anyone wants to send my way!). So I feel comfortable that it is achievable and not out of my league.
That said everyone has bad days and I know Sunday will not be easy. 3:05 is the "A" goal, but if I show up feeling flat or a northeaster blows through I will be happy with any kind of PR (Under 3:16:30) and very happy with anything under 3:10.
I still don't think I have completely gotten over Richmond last year so I would like to put that behind me by finally running the sub 3:10 I was looking for there.
Experience and my stats are on my side. I dissected the predictions a few ways based on past "personal predictor rates" and it seems 3:05 is the most likely result. A good sign!
This will be my 18th marathon and I am looking forward to finding out what surprise this marathon will hold since they have all had different obstacles. I am feeling optimistic. My legs are feeling "perky" which usually doesn't happen for me until a few weeks post marathon where I go and run something short fast so it is exciting to possibly line up a proper taper and race completely tapered and full of energy.
Now can someone please press fast forward to Friday so I can go pick up my packet and start getting really nervous?