Preparing for the marathon...New Orleans style

   With the marathon only being four months away and my opponent having mountains to train on I figured the best thing I could do would be to simulate the course conditions as close to New Orleans as I can.

I try to say Hi to Jim every morning on my run

   Step 1: find a swamp to train in. Check. A good portion of the area I live in is right at, just above, or as so often the case of our greenway, below sea level. This means no matter what kind of humidity, reptiles, swamp people, flies, and air so thick you could ladel soup from it, I'll hopefully be used to it.

There's a hurricane on race day...? Perfect.
   Step 2: Prepare for all weather conditions. Check. In a post-Katrina New Orleans I figure I can never be over prepared for what kind of weather I might experience come marathon day. As it happened Hurricane Sandy came through my neck of the woods on the same day a local race had been scheduled. Not wanting to give up what might be only chance to race in hurricane conditions before M day I hurried to register for the 8k, only to realize that it had been canceled for "safety" reasons. Undaunted, I decided to get my LSD (long slow distance) run in that day anyway.  I geared up and hit the streets filled with wind and rain. While the gale force head winds might have left me looking like the sidewalk was a treadmill and caused me to get a few less miles than planned, I must say I don't regret the decision.

   Step three: follow the plan. Quasi-check. I've done a marathon or two already, but this time I'm following a marathon plan. As a guy who loathes being told what to do and when to do it, this is definitely the hardest part for me. Also...all that running stuff.  BUT, I'm doing my best to stick with the plan. Currently it has me running six days a week almost up to the week of the race, which is far more than I've ever done before. Up until now I've run what I wanted to, when I wanted to, and avoided speed work and tempo runs (a sudden incase in speed for a predetermined distance during your run) like the plague. However, in order to hit my goals I am trying my best to comply with what's written in the plan. It may legitimately be the hardest thing I've ever done.
No marathon plan, YOU GO RUN 11 MILES TONIGHT!

weight training: N'awlins style

   Step four: prepare for the inevitable. Check. It's New Orleans; this means good times, nights out, beads and beers. In order to once again simulate conditions as close as I can to race day I'm drinking Sam Adams *cough* could-use-sponsorship *cough* often, and trying to spend my nights out partying. While these things are definitely taking their toll, I feel it's the right thing to do for my training. 

   One last step: my opponent has purportedly hired ultra runner Sage Canaday as a trainer to match my Boston marathon Personal trainer. This is him:

   Now I'm not suggesting that I would like to have him "taken out." I'm just saying that if he happened to have an "accident" that prohibited him from training my friend...well then someone out there might find themselves the recipient of a only slightly used Applebee's gift card. Just sayin.

   Wish me luck as I take off once again on my ever daunting run tonight (eleven miles in the cold & rain) and knock down another week in the elusive quest to win all the sports in New Orleans come February. I get the feeling that I'm going to need it.


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