During my training for last October's Detroit Marathon, I never once wore gloves, a Balaclava on the top of my head or a long-sleeve running shirt. But with temperatures in the low 30s and the wind chill in the high 20s at the start, I was wearing all of that on race day.
My training for Sunday's Tobacco Road Marathon has been full of brutally cold temperatures, blustery winds and some snow and, until recently, gloves were required for every run. The temperature never has been above the mid-40s for any of my training runs, but according to weather.com's hour-by-hour forecast for Cary, it will be 51 degrees at 7 a.m. when the race starts, with the temperature rising to the 60s by about 10:30 a.m., when I hope to finish.
Given the choice between those two conditions, I'd probably prefer Sunday's forecast. But 60s is a bit too hot for a marathon, particularly when I haven't run in those temperatures for months. At least the long-range forecasts of rain for race day turned out to be wrong.
I'm trying to drink as much Gatorade and water as I can today so that I'm properly hydrated for the run.
My goal for the race is to run 8-minute miles, which would give me my adventurous finishing-time goal of 3 hours, 30 minutes.
Short of that, I'd like to beat 3:33:51, which is my marathon PR set at Chicago a few years ago.
Short of that, I could run a Boston Marathon qualifying time with a finish of 3:35:59 or better. I've run Boston with a media waiver, but never have qualified for Boston.
Failing the above, I would hope to at least finish around 3:40.
The key to all of that will be not going out too fast, running as close to 8-minute miles as possible, and avoiding the dreaded 9-minute miles that invariably crop up in the last six miles.
Can't wait to get to the starting line!