At this time last year, my home-office desk had two neat piles – one had four pages turned upside down.  This was my “weeks in the bank” pile.  The other had 14 pages turned right-side up.  This was my “weeks still to come” pile. 

Every Monday I’d take the top page in the “week’s still to come” pile and memorize that week’s recommended training plan.

I’d have to determine if, given my schedule, I could stick with the letter of the plan, or if I’d be forced to make adjustments and rely on the spirit of the plan.

In addition to the print-outs, I had a yellow legal pad on which I’d make notes about the training itself – the route I ran, what I wore, how I felt, what I ate the night before.

In short, I thought I was pretty well organized. 

In reality, I was borderline psychotic.

Through three months of foundation building and 18 weeks of official training , I was consumed by the marathon. 

 

So why do I feel so different this year? 

Why am I finally starting to think about my official training?

I suppose there’s a certain “been there – done that” mind set, but that can’t be all there is to it.

I’m still excited and nervous about the marathon. 

I’m still thinking about the next 14 weeks and calculating where I’ll be each weekend because that will impact my long runs.

I’m still debating the merits of hill training vs. speed work at the track (Rick – you’ll be happy to hear that I’m leaning towards hill work this time around).

I suppose I can’t explain why I feel different, I’m just going to roll with it. 

My new, official training program tells me that I have to run a nice slow three-miler today.  Three miler?? I think this is going to be more of a “spirit of the plan” type of day.