The NYC Half is Sunday.
I’m anxious, excited and nervous as all heck. Anxious to put the last 10 weeks of hard training to the test. Excited to be racing again. Nervous because I have some pretty BIG goals for this race.
There’s a huge part of me that wants to keep my goals hidden. It’ll be a lot easier on Sunday if I come up short if I didn’t share what my goals were here. I won’t have to publicly admit defeat like I had to do in January when I missed the qualifying time for the Saucony Hurricane Team.
And what is the worst that could happen? That I fail? I have failed at SO many things I’ve set out to do in my life…so what’s one more? Failing makes me stronger. Failing no longer scares me.
All I can do on Saturday is race with my heart and my head – my body will follow.
The mini-taper this week has not been kind to me. I had a planned rest day on Monday but took an unplanned rest day yesterday. After a few night’s of poor sleeping from my children, I slept in AND chose to nap when they did yesterday. Sleep trumps an easy few miles on the treadmill. I was coming off a huge high from the weekend’s successful runs and by skipping a few days of running, I cracked open the door just enough to let doubt creep in.
The doubt, nervousness, fear have already begun to overtake the quiet moments in my mind and I find myself not being able to think about anything else. Sunday CANNOT come quick enough.
My goal on Sunday is l Sub-1:32…although I also have a dream goal of sub-1:31. That would be a 3 1/2 min PR for me – a PR that was set back in 2007 when I was single, child-free, and training pretty hard for the Army 10-miler.
Sub-1:32 is going to be the result of having a great day of racing. Sub-1:31 could happen if I have a perfect day of racing. It averages out to a 6:56 pace. One of my last steady state runs (on the treadmill) was 10 miles at a 6:50 pace. So it could happen…
The NYC Half on Sunday is not the easiest course. The first half is extremely hilly (it’s just over a full loop in Central Park) and then heads down 7th Avenue (through Times Square) over to the West Side Highway.
My race plan / strategy is pretty simple and consists of two distinct parts:
Part 1: Run in control for the first 5 (ish) miles. Run conservatively and based on how I feel. I will try to stay around 7:05-7:10 for some of those miles (the hilly ones) and around 7 for the downhill portions (there is no flat parts of CP!).
Part 2: Gradually pick up the pace (as much as I can) once I exit the park. My plan is to treat it like a progression run. And then just hold on to the finish.
I ran this course (slightly different) in 2010 in 1:35:23. I started way too fast and died at the end.
You can track me on Sunday (if you want!) through a free-mobile app. All information can be found here. You can search for me via my name (Michele Gonzalez) or my bib # (1234 – is that not the best bib # ever?) .
My mom will be sleeping over our home Saturday night so that my husband and I can travel into the city together. I am really grateful that she has volunteered to babysit – having my husband with me will mean he can drop me off at the start, take some photos of me exiting the park, and then be at the finish (it’s a point-to-point course) with warm clothes. YAY! =) Thanks, Mom!
Please let me know if you are running the NYC Half! I’d love to meet up! I plan to head to the expo early Saturday morning (maybe with my husband and kids!)