5 more sleeps until race day. I am starting to get over my taper demons now and am simply enjoying the extra rest. While it's weird to have all this extra time, running much less now than I was in the peak of my training, it's been refreshing at the same time. It's a bit of a vacation or retreat from training: a nice break for my body. I'm priming myself for the biggest physical stress I've ever put on my body in my entire life. Sounds like awesome fun, doesn't it? It's getting excited about doing this though that makes me truly feel like the athlete that I am.
I'm focusing on rest, hydration, more rest, and good nutrition. Drinking lots of water and having lots of vitamin C rich food to mitigate risk of getting sick after the race as running such a distance is likely to tax my immune system. I'm having lots of protein and carbs, to allow my muscles to heal after months of stress and for them to be fueled and ready for the stress of race day. And I'm making sure every night, I get at least 8 hours of sleep, as there's a good chance that the night before the race, I'll get minimal sleep. My plan this Friday is to go to bed really early, as the sleep 2 nights before race day is the most important one of them all.
As for the mental part of the game, I'm finally learning to let go. After some emotional times, and several moments spent over-thinking the details of my training, I've finally realized it's time to just rest my mind too. Why rest my body if I continue to stress my mind? That would be counter-productive, right?... Exactly. That's what I thought.
There's absolutely nothing I can do now to improve my readiness for the race. So if I stress that I haven't done enough, that won't help. It's not like stressing will allow me to find a quick solution to better ready myself. If I'm not ready now, I won't be ready on race day.
This might sound negative to some, especially to one part of my brain that doesn't give up and wants to always do more. But it's a positive message I'm telling myself, because it's a message of trust in myself and trust in the training I've done. I've accomplished so much in my training and feel so strong going into the race. I overcame illness and injury during training and instead of giving up, I picked up where I left off, and got in the vast majority of the miles I planned to.
On my short runs this week so far, I've felt a jump in my step, and an eagerness and readiness to go faster. No slogging away, with tired legs and tired mind, wondering if I've over-trained. I'm strong. I'm primed. I'm fit. I'm psyched. I'm ready to go.
Marathon on Sunday? BRING IT ON! Zahida's ready.