So I'm Obsessing a Little

So as my next marathon approaches, I've started to get wrapped up in numbers and, well, I'm obsessing a bit. Saying 'a bit' might be an understatement but my rationalization is helping me stay a bit calmer. Let's go on a journey into Katherine's thought process!

Let's bring Figment along for the ride too!

Okay, watching the Boston Marathon is so inspiring. I can’t get over how awesome those athletes are and I want to be there. Like really want to be there. I’ve made it my goal to be able to qualify for Boston by the 2017 race date and in my current running state… it’s tantalizingly close. I’m just on the border of that 3:35:00 qualifying time!

I’ve been running marathons for about 4.5 years now (has it really been that long?) and each time I run a marathon for time (basically this excludes my Goofy marathon in 2013 and my Dopey marathon in 2014) I’ve improved by ~20 sec/mile. My last marathon in October of last year was a 3:51:04 at the Nike Women’s Marathon in San Francisco with a pace of 8:49/mile. So with that in mind my next attempt could potential put me around 3:42! I feel like this is a fairly realistic goal and here’s why:

     1.  Before my hilly October marathon, I ran a 1:44:18 at the Disneyland Half Marathon on a flat course. This year I ran a 1:44:34 at the RnR San Francisco Half Marathon, only 18 second behind that half on a significantly hillier and more difficult course. This means that on a flatter marathon course I should do better, right? (Basically I went flat to hilly and this time I’m going hilly to flatter, not completely flat but definitely flatter than SF)
       
      2. When I ran my last marathon, I was really stressed out by work and life. I was working all the time (I actually had to be on a conference call when I was on the post-race shuttle) and going into the event I was pretty exhausted. Not to mention the morning of my alarm didn’t go off and I nearly missed the race! (Race Recap Here) Life right now has been very relaxed. I’ve been sleeping and eating well and I’ve reduced a lot of the stress in my life and I feel really ready to tackle a race!

      3.   I had a GREAT last 20 miler. Like I’ve never enjoyed my last long run more before taper! Normally, I’m counting down the miles of that last long-long run and rejoice the beginning of taper when it’s finished!
      
      4. I’m super inspired by Boston right now! I want to go to there! I want the chance to see these elite runners in person and to be a part of that magic!

So as I said my 3:42 is my realistic goal based on pseudo-logic. Really if I beat 3:45 I’ll be pretty happy. But here’s where the numbers start to play with my reasonable, logical self.

When I input my half marathon time into the McMillan calculator it paces me at 8:24 or a 3:40 marathon. That’s only 5 minutes off my qualifying time and now I’m thinking, maybe I could shave off a few seconds per mile and qualify! Realistically though, McMillan’s calculator has never accurately predicted my marathon finish times, I tend to slow down more when the distance doubles than this predictor estimates but… but… could my conviction and crazy carry me the rest of the way? I’ve never felt stronger as a runner, so it’s possible right?

My plan is to stick to ~8:25 min/mi early on then turn up the heat appropriately. I’m really optimistic about this race though! This will be marathon lucky number seven (hopefully)!

Thanks for listening to my crazy runner monologue!

Sincerely,

Dreaming of Boston