36 hours until my first half-marathon.

And I’m not really all that nervous. Granted,  besides the 5k last Saturday in the snow, I haven’t run in over two weeks, but I’m feeling good about the race. All thanks to a serendipitous confluence of events.

  1. I’m finally over my cold.  For those who don’t read my Facebook statuses constantly, I’ve had some weird little cold with laryngitis for the past 2 weeks.  And last night was the first night in those two weeks that I haven’t woken up with a coughing attack. Bonus: Today I have only sneezed twice!

    Dramatic re-enactment of previously described sneeze.

  2. Due to the length of said cold, I had expected to run this race with congestion, sneezing, coughing, and a few weeks worth of poor nights’ rest. As such, I am mentally prepared to go ridiculously slowly and take many walking/wheezing breaks. So even now that I’m feeling well, I have no mental pressure on myself to push myself too hard.
  3. It’s my first half-marathon. No matter how slowly I run, I will set a PR! That’s the fun with new distances – all you have to do is finish the thing and you’ll set a PR. I could crawl the thing and set a PR.
  4. I am already registered for another half-marathon – the Zooma Women’s Half-Marathon in Austin, Texas on April 16 with my lovely friends Jennifer, her sister, and possibly Kristen, too. He doesn’t know it yet, but we’re going to get our friend Cody run it with us as our token male. Just to prove we’re not sexist. Since Zooma is 2 months after Mercedes, I can treat the Mercedes half as a kind of tempo run or training run, albeit with thousands of running buddies, spectators, lots of water stops and a free massage afterward. On that note: I believe all training runs over 10 miles should have these perks.

    You want to say "zoooooooom!" and make race car noises when reading this too, right?

  5. I have a new gadget to help keep me going! My new Garmin Forerunner 405CX came in on Wednesday night (thanks paycheck from selling my magazine article!) and appears to be way too useful. While the GPS and constant updates for pace, distance, and overall time will be super useful, I’m mostly excited about the tiny running men! Don’t worry – I plan on doing a trial run Saturday (read: walking around my parking lot) to make sure that I know what all the buttons do while the GPS is going. I had a dream the other night that I ran the race in 2:18:30 but forgot to turn my watch on until the finish line. In my mind, the point of the watch is to have lots of data about splits and a GPS map of your run. So it’s making me paranoid and silly to think that I would forget or screw up somehow recording my race. In my dream I wore a very large, expensive watch for a two and a half hour run for no apparent reason. Solemn vow: I will use the watch correctly, I swearhope.

    Scientific fact: Tiny running men make the best digital pace partners.

  6. The weather is going to be great! No, seriously. Great. I don’t think you could ask for better weather for a half-marathon or a marathon. I mean, sure, slightly lower wind-speeds might be nice. But you won’t hear me complain (well, until mile 10ish).

    Weather

    Exhibit A: Perks of living in the South.

So, after all of that, I think it’s going to be a pretty good race day for me, minus the fact I haven’t had a real run since January 29. I’m hitting the Expo tomorrow morning with my friend Rhiannon, who will be running her fifth full marathon Sunday.  Along with picking up my race packet (I hear the shirt is great this year) I’m going to purchase a 13.1 sticker for the back of my car.  That sucker’s going to be on my car somewhere between the finish line and the shower.

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