Who knew running long distances would involve as much thought as building a five-year plan for an organization or developing an offensive game plan against a superior defense? (Pardon the analogy, but hey, it’s football season!)
With 10 days to go before taking part in my first half marathon, my mind has been consumed with different scenarios, each requiring me to be strategic in how I am going to run the race.
Do I start at a much slower pace, and then pick people off on the back-end of the course? Do I try to run an even pace throughout the race? Do I start fast, slow down, and sprint for my life the final two-three miles?
Fortunately, I live close to parts of the race course. Over the last few training runs, I’ve been able to practice different techniques and strategies. For instance: Red house on the corner of “block X” = slow down; On “block Y,” sprint until you see the speed limit sign; Victorian house on the left near “block Z” = two miles until the finish line.
Of course, come race day, everything will likely be different. Adrenaline will be flowing, my right knee may be barking, and my competitive spirit might be my worst enemy.
Let’s hope I remember the Xs and Os in the playbook.