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AGH- it’s race week already! It feels like I really just signed up for this race (I didn’t- I signed up on New Years Eve so it’s been a few months). The training flew by and here I am, only a few days out. This has been the most chill training cycle, and I’m not quite sure why. I haven’t had the typical injury struggles, leading to better runs and higher peak mileage. Normally I’m sore for a couple days after long runs, but I haven’t had too much of that this training cycle. I’m hoping this more chill cycle won’t lead to worse performance!!!

In the fall I had thought at one point in training that “I’m never training for a longer mileage race- this is ridiculous” again. Well, then I found myself signing up for another half marathon, and this training cycle I haven’t regretted signing up! It’s been a really great one.

The thing is, I haven’t really run a race with an unknown course since my half marathon in November of 2012. My two half marathons in 2013 were repeats of the two courses I ran in 2012. This time it’s different. I’ve never been to Carmel before and have never seen the race course. That course, as I understand it, has some hills, although I believe they are fairly “small” (and maybe even ends with one too? I’ve read a bunch of race recaps from previous years and I keep seeing this mentioned…), and I really don’t have anywhere to train with hills. I’ve found a route where the elevation changes about 75-80 feet throughout a 9 mile route, but no real hills. So, even a little hill might mess with my legs a bit.

I’m nervous for the hills since I’ve very rarely run them. I have gotten bad cramps during the last miles of races before (Indy Mini there were 3ish miles of them, and the Monumental in November there was 1 really really bad last mile), and I’m fully expecting that I’ll deal with them again in this race… although I hope not for 3 or more miles again! Mentally I need to be prepared for them  as I wasn’t last May and it was a no-good situation.

This week I’ve been eating bananas for breakfast, this quinoa dish for lunches, and various things for dinner, including pasta! I’ve increased salt a bit (having POTS already requires an increase), stretching every day, and trying to be light on the exercise that I do.

But mostly, I’m feeling antsy and full of energy. Cutting back so much on exercise has left me with all sorts of pent up energy and I’m itching to get it all out! So for now I’m trying to sleep, rest, enjoy work for the week, and try not to check the weather too much 🙂

So- here’s to a good half marathon #5 on a new-to-me course!

Now it’s your turn to share! Do you have any race week rituals?