Several months ago I talked my original running buddy from Santa Barbara, Tom, into signing up to run CIM with me. I would be moving back to Sac, so it seemed like a great way to keep in touch and then eventually meet up again. Unfortunately the plan has changed. A couple days ago his dog got really sick so he opted to stay with him and back out of CIM. I can totally understand the decision, although I'm admittedly bummed we won't be running another marathon together. And so, with the turn of events, I've had to rethink my goals. Above all, I will be running this, not racing. My body is just not prepared to push it and mentally I just don't want the pressure. I've decided on a plan of action, however, complete with a back up plan. I'm going to start out with the 4:30 pace group. I really enjoyed running with a pacer at the Urban Cow Half and set my PR there. As I've said before, I'm terrible at running even splits so it's great to be able to have someone else worry about that. I think this would be a reasonable pace for me, slower that most of my runs have been for a while, but it would give me a PR by 4 minutes. Now it's very possible that I could have a bad day though, and in that case I will drop back and hopefully catch the 4:45 pace group. I've come to terms that it could go either way.
Despite the forecast earlier this week proclaiming dry skies for Sunday, it's currently looking like it's going to be a wet one. Now I love running in the rain, but I'm not so sure about running a marathon in the rain. I have my outfit laid out, but since it's only going to be wet and not freezing (thank goodness) I'm only going with one layer - Brooks capris, Nike t-shirt with arm sleeves, and my earwarmer headband. Hopefully this is a winning combo. If it ends up being a downpour, I'm just totally screwed.
CIM outfit, minus visor, plus arm sleeves
This will be my final race of 2010, 6th marathon this year, and 8th marathon overall. I'm looking forward to the experience of running in my hometown, seeing a ton of familiar faces, and the accomplishment of covering 26.2 miles. My parents will be out on the course as well as several coworkers so I have that to look forward to. I'm just really hoping for a good day, wish me luck!