Skipping the projected afternoon swim - lungs feeling slightly dodgy after this morning's run (wheezy, slightly sore), figure it is better to be on the safe side. I really, really don't want to get sick right now!
Had a bit of downtime this afternoon where I ran some numbers for Coeur d'Alene. Have made a bunch of legitimate plans this week - plane tickets are bought, hotel stay extended to Tuesday to give a bit more wiggle room on bicycle arrangements and human transportation. I am going to make this thing happen!
I was talking to Max the other day about the possibility of not finishing, and he told me not even to think about it - but that's not the sort of person I am. I would rather have a very realistic assessment of the situation, including worst-case scenarios, train to the best of my abilities and then (as Brent says) roll with what the day brings me. However, I do believe that I should be able to get an official finish if things go smoothly. And I also believe that positive visualization is an effective tool - thus these ruminations on times...
My once-and-future running coach Mindy Solkin always asks her marathoners and half-marathoners to come up with three different time goals for a significant race: a dream goal, a reach goal and an attainable goal that you'd be happy with.
So: 14:34; 15:49; 16:40.
Here's how the numbers go:
14:34 is made up of a 1:30 swim, a 7:30 bike and a 5:14 run (12-minute miles), plus 10 minutes for each transition. There is no possible way on earth I'm finishing faster than that this time round, but if I had a magically good day out there, this is just within the bounds of possibility - so 14:32 is my specific sub-15:00 dream goal.
16:40 is made up of a 1:50 swim, an 8:00 bike and a 6:30 marathon (just under 15-minute miles), plus 10 minutes for each transition. These times are all realistic, and it may well be that I'm riding this close to the cutoffs - 20 minutes' slack is not a lot, but this is a highly viable scenario for a race result that I'm still going to be pretty darn happy with.
The sweet spot in between: 15:49. Because I like the sound of the number, and because a sub-16-hour goal will keep me focused on the run course and give me an incentive to keep moving as fast as I can.