Anyway, the forecast is not looking too good for Sunday - with highs hurtling towards 70+ degrees during the race and winds of 15 mph coming out of the southwest. So, I figured I need some backup plans, especially since I don't run well in the heat. Here they are:
Plan A: 3:05:02 or less: Start at 7:20/mile for the first mile, gradually speed up, then lock in a 6:55/mile at around mile six. Goal attained: Personal record.
Plan B: 3:08:59 or less: Start at 7:30/mile then lock in a 7:00/mile: Goal attained: Chicago Marathon personal course record.
Plan C: 3:15:00 or less: Start at 7:30/mile then lock in at a 7:15/mile pace. Goal attained: Auto-qualify for Chicago Marathon 2016.
Plan D: 3:22:30 or less: Start at 7:40/mile then lock in at a 7:35/mile pace. Goal attained: BQ for 2017.
Plan E: Simply finish the race: Start at 9:00/mile then gradually slow down as I get trampled by fellow "A" and "B" corral runners until I am in a comfortable waddle or walk. High-five as many spectators as possible and drink beer when offered. Goal attained: Zen-like happiness and auto-qualify for Chicago Marathons 2016 through 2019 as I will be a "legacy finisher".
Which one will it be? I will have to make a game-time decision at the start line. If I'm feeling warm before the horn sounds, I will have to bid adieu to Plan A and decide if it will be a B through E kind of day. I learned the hard way during my first (Chicago 2010) - that overheating turns the final miles in the sun up Michigan Avenue into a death march. No matter what happens - post-race I will be enjoying a beer at the Weathermark on Michigan Avenue and later in the day I will be eating a hearty German meal in my neighborhood while wearing one of these:
|My 2012 Medal|
Let me know if you're running, or where you'll be along the course and I will try to look out for you! Good luck to everyone!