Sunday, April 19, 2009

The Final Boston Countdown

It's just about here, and I'm sitting in my hotel room, as my brother, nephew and parents are on their way to the Red Sox game at Fenway. One of the first things I did was go and get my race # and my Boston jacket....

So, now I'm just relaxing, thinking about the day ahead, thinking about the race tomorrow. I drove the course with my brother and nephew last night, but will likely do it again while it's day light out and take a few pictures before the race day festivities.

I have to say very little has gone as planned this week...nothing bad, just not as planne...and I'm feel very calm about tomorrow. I've been nervous, excited, all that stuff. Today, as I sit here, I feel prepared. I won't say overly confident, but prepared. Nothing will be a surprise tomorrow. The only variable will be how my body responds when it's time to go. I've put in the miles, put in the long runs, put in most of the workouts. Now it's just time to perform. I'm nervous, of course, this being my first Boston... the grand-daddy of marathons. The Super Bowl of marathons, as one guy told me. There's a history to this city and to this race that is unmatched. I've seen Paul Revere's house, driven by Boston Harbor... I mean this city is a part of the birth of our great country. Talk about history. And then, I'm running a race that is the longest running race in the world, this being the 113th running of the Boston Marathon. And if I'm not mistaken, the course has been the same course since 1927. How much cooler can it get? So yeah... I'm nervous about all that.

And here I sit, having run the hills in Conroe, having toughed out, quite possibly, tougher running conditions than anything to be faced here. Even the last day was cold and ridiculously windy, and yet, alone, I was able to hammer out 24.2 miles in Conroe when I didn't feel at 100%. Today, my body is recovered, I'm trained... just overall, I feel ready. Ready to tackle the challenge. To run the course that has humbled so many and given a dream-come-true moment for so many others. I'm ready to get to Hopkinton and start the race, to see the small towns go by, step by step. I'm ready to hit 16 miles and begin the infamous Newton Hills and culminate that experience with Heartbreak Hill. I'm ready to crest Heartbreak and begin the downhill run to the finish. Yeah, we drove it... it's not purely downhill...there's still some hills there...but it's the homestretch. I hope to push to the finish there.

I don't often try to relay goal too early, but I'll put it out there now.

I trained with the idea of 2:40 in mind. Honestly, had I been better prepared for the Houston Half, and completed THAT training properly, 2:40 might be realistic. Being here, I'm planning on going out at closer to 2:45 pace, maybe even 2:50 pace through half way. It's mainly downhill there, and the faster part of the course, but no need to use it up there. From there, still go easy so to speak until the Newton Hills. I won't go hammering the hills, but pushing through them will be what I have in mind and then going for it for the final 4 miles. I'd love to get 2:40, but I'm not sure if that's realistic. We'll see where I'm at @ 21.

I want to thank Sean Wade and his Kenyan Way training program for getting me prepared for this. Best training around, in my humble opinion. I want to thank all of those close to me and at a distance who have given me the kind of support one can only dream of but never really ask for. It's been unbelievable. My daughter is my inspiration... I can't even put it in to words. Lastly, and most imporantly, I thank God for giving me these abilities, this opportunity, and for surrounding me with those who have helped me get just a little closer to learning my potential. I'd be nowhere without Him.

So, there we have it. Time to sign off, and just relax more. I'm in Boston for the Boston Marathon, and I'm loving this feeling. Talk to yall again after.....


Anonymous said...

5 turns. Its almost over. I wish I could say it will be a relief, and I guess in a way it will be for a while, but it will be for MONTHS you will still think about it and wish you could do it all over again...theres nothing like the first time though of running the race you trained so hard wont ever get this one back.

Run like the wind.

Wonderduck said...

I am posting my congrats before the race (or right at the start). I hope you run an awesome race, but just running Boston will be a great day. I love that race. Congrats on some awesome training and for what I hope will be an awe inspiring day!


Nuke Runner said...

I'm too late to wish good luck, but I'll at least congratulate you on your finish. It might not have been the time you trained for, but I think it's pretty decent for that course.

Minken said...

Completely AWESOME run Sam!! I tracked you while I was working today and am happy to see all your hard work and dedication paid off in spades! You were a manimal today...a manimal!!

Anonymous said...

Congrats Sam! Good race on a tough day! Good to see a familiar face on the course.

Chris Robbins

Anonymous said...

I know you know this already, but I can't say enough how incredibly proud I am of you.

An 8 min pr over houston and IN BOSTON; over the hills and through the wind.

Your daughter might be your inspiration, but you are mine.

kayry said...

Awesome job out there!!!!! Very gutsy start - great that you went for it. Congrats on Sub3!!!