Highlights = 2 light speed workouts to marathon sharpen. 2:56:07 marathon Saturday, followed by a 26 mile trail run on the Ice Age trail in Northern Kettle Moraine on Sunday - In a respectable 4:16.
The marathon logistics were easy as I stayed with my Friend Norm and his DW Beth. Another friend Andy (Fast Andy ran a slow for him - 2:39 5th OA) and I were running the marathon and Norm the 1/2 (He had run the fun - hot Boston 5 days before) We left the house 45 minutes before the 7:30 start. Easily found parking within a 2 minute walk of the start/finish area. Everything pre-race was logistically easy (More important than people realize).
I was surprised at how easy it was to enter the back of the corral system 10 minutes pre-race and 2 minute later be within feet of the start line. The 1/2M and Marathon start together, there was money for top 3 and CR bonus of $1,000. I made sure to start behind the stallions.
After the gun went off I found a fastish, but relaxed stride for the 1st 10k. I was running a honest 98% effort marathon pace, but by mile #9 I could tell I needed to back it down a bit and put in time until mile #20. I think that is why we taper more than 1 week. My legs were not fresh enough to keep Marathon Pace up. After mile #20 I gave it what I had - But I was still a 50 seconds possitive split on final 10k to 1st 10k.
The course is beautiful - Many neighborhoods and trees. All pavement, but some bike paths with mostly blacktop roads. The wind was 10+ MPH and was a factor. The uphills were nice and gentle enough not to be soul stealers, but a few of the downhills were steep enough to not gain a lot out of them. My 2 negative comments would be - There were a few more corners than I would like and the accuracy of some mile markers were off ... I stopped taking splits at mile #9.
Post race back at Norm's house was really nice and I stayed the night post beer.
Sunday I drove back to Neenah with a little stop off at my favorite trail to shake out the legs. I would have been happy to run a little or a lot ... It turned out my legs felt fine running slow ~ so I did the route I do most often ~ 26.
Monday ~ my legs are sore, but only a little beat up. I have 40 days until FANS 24. The next 3-4 weeks are critical to do everything right. The trick is to figure out what the "Right Thing" is? Is the right thing to push the mileage on a day or take the day completely off. Sometimes less is more and the right thing is not to run. Even though I just typed it - That is a hard thing to put into practice.
Good running to all!