Toronto Goodlife Fitness Marathon.
This is the last time this race will be run in the fall, as it moves to spring starting in 2011. The last chance to run the Rosedale Valley with full fall colours!
Me and the Marathon
I did this race in 2008, my one and only marathon attempt (not counting the marathon at Ironman!).
It was my second year of running. My goal was to finish, I came in just under 4:00 (3:56:42 to be exact!) with a horribly positive split and some very tough closing kilometers. I learned a lot from that experience - 42.2km of running is something you need to treat with respect.
I will hit the start line this year more than 10 pounds lighter and with thousands of kilometers of running (and an Ironman!) under my belt since the last attempt.
I'm a very analytical person, and my last experienced made me very hesitant to merely go by feel... so I came up with this:
I have both pace and HR targets. Basically I will try to hit the pace I've chosen, only altering it faster or slower if I find I'm outside of the Heart Rate zone I've set.
This race is net downhill, all in the first half, and last time I let myself get completely carried away by this. I ended up going too fast, and by 35km I was in full blow-up panic mode. I've picked a slightly faster pace for the downhill section (10.5-17km) and will only go faster if my HR is very low.
So my goal is 3:35:44... how's that for specific? It's in the ballpark of where McMillan's Running Calculator tells me I should be (3:33:22), based on my half time from May. Anything sub-3:40 will be satisfying, the closer to 3:30 the more I'll start getting delusions about qualifying for Boston someday!
I'll bring a couple of gels and will rely on the course Gatorade/water. Target is 250 calories per hour, but hard to tell with those little cups. Basically it comes down to "what I can stomach".
One addition to my arsenal - Endurolytes. I first tried these at the Ironman Muskoka 70.3, and it really seemed to help fight off any cramping. I've had trouble with cramping before, so it can't hurt.