This is it. No more talk. No more guessing. No more blogging. We’re going to find out if all the work for the last four months –and the last 6 years– have paid off. Colin and I will be meeting up to tackle the Vermont Marathon. The goal? Qualify for the Boston Marathon. Here’s the run down.
We’re flying up to Vermont on Saturday, going directly to pick up race numbers, checking into the hotel, going to dinner, and then going to sleep. It’ll be a bit of a whirlwind, which should hopefully help distract me from my nerves. The race starts at 8:03am –much later than I’d like considering the weather– so I’ll hopefully be able to get a decent amount of sleep. Ev and I will walk from the hotel over to the starting area to meet Colin.
Colin has been laying down some crazy fast times recently. Vermont is going to provide a bit of redemption for him since his last marathon. My plan is simple — hang with him. We’re going to run together start to finish, aiming for 7:00 minute miles. There are two noteworthy, but manageable hills, where we’ll dial it back a little. Here’s what the course looks like. My hope is to hold a pretty consistent 7:00-7:10 minute per mile for the first 20 miles, reassess how we’re feeling, and hopefully have enough in the tank to hammer it.
If all goes to plan, we’ll hit our target time of 3:03:30. That leaves us a little wiggle room to come in under 3:05:00. That’s the magic number. Anything over 3:05:00 is a bust. There’s no A for effort; no “nice try”; no reason to celebrate. Pressure? Maybe just a little.
What To Expect
Here’s where you come in. You can follow along on Twitter to see how I’m doing. Fear not, Twitter-phobes! Just follow my account here @mikegalante and it will be live-tweeting my status — no account necessary. Otherwise, you can check here and search for me. I’m #188. Colin is #149. Including the Start and Finish, there should be 6 total updates. Honestly, knowing that my splits are out there for all to see, and that you’ll be expecting good news, is incredibly motivating.
The weather has been indecisive, but seems to be settling right around
damn hot warmer-than-ideal. It could cause problems, but with training in Texas (where the daily low is similar to the Vermont high), I should be ok. Taking some advice from comedian Eugene Mirman, “a backup plan is the first step towards failure”. So for now we’re focusing on positive thoughts and dominating. Failure is not an option.
The next 26.2 miles will be the hardest, most draining I’ve ever run. Wish me luck.