So the words "you're almost there" are some of the most obnoxious words you can say to someone during a marathon. The definition of "almost there" differs wildly from person to person. Some people define it as when they are taking the last step the cross the finish line, others might think of it as mile 26 out of 26.2. The point is, that you never know, so if you are a spectator (or a coach for that matter), I would bite your tongue and not say that to anyone.
But those words are what are carrying me through this last week of September! It's been a chaotic month of work but I will be back to focusing on training in October and I can't wait. I did get in some decent miles over the weekend...even if I felt like I was learning to run all over again.
On Saturday I went for a very painful 3 mile run. The weather is starting to cool off (which I love!) but it's also fall allergy season so I had trouble breathing for the whole 3 miles. My shins were on fire and I wanted to quit just about every step but I managed to finish. It did feel nice to get a jump on my Saturday by working out instead of working.
The weather was even cooler on Sunday morning. I still pulled out the running shorts but had to dig in the drawer for a long sleeved shirt. It was the last long training for the fall Team in Training teams - 20 miles for the full marathoners and 10 miles for the 1/2 marathoners. The fall races are less than 3 weeks away! Most of our walkers this season are doing the 1/2 so I set out on a 10 mile walk with the team and while my legs still feel a little rusty, it felt good to get some time on my feet....even though by the end of it, my feet were a little angry (that's what a frozen golf ball is for).
Coaching a marathon is sometimes harder on the body than actually competing. It involves covering A LOT of distance but there is also lots of standing around waiting on people. I'll be coaching both the runners and walkers at the Nike Women's Marathon in a couple weeks and because I can't run that fast, I have to find a way (cab, cut the course, etc.) to get in front of the runners and then wait for them to pass by. The distance typically comes into play when I will run or walk the same mile or 2 multiple times. I might wait at mile 10 of a race and then jump out onto the course each time I see a participant, run or walk a mile with them, then hop off the course and wait for the next person and then repeat. If you have 20 people on your team that are all different paces, you end up doing the same mile over and over again. That means lots of time on the feet!
I'm in Chicago for a meeting this week and while on the ride downtown from the airport, I saw lots of runners running along the lake and I really wanted to jump out of the cab and join them. I probably would have looked like a crazy lady though trying to run while dragging my roller bag and a laptop/projector case. :) Oh well, I'm ALMOST THERE and will be focusing on training starting this weekend!