Thursday, January 15, 2009
Three Days: Dress Rehearsal
This morning was my final run before the Houston Marathon, so I thought it would be a good day to do a dress rehearsal.
The first part of the dress rehearsal was just the running part. I ran from the gym out onto the course and then traced it back all the way to the finish line at the George R. Brown Convention Center, a route I never run during the prep for the race. I was able to notice some physical cues that will help on race day about my rhythm, breathing, and (strangely) relaxing my feet to smooth out the gait. Knowing the way my little brain works when it is under stress, I also picked out my 200 yard goals that I can achieve in the last 2 miles of the course (run to the top of the rise, . . . to the traffic light . . . to the Hyatt sky bridge and turn left . . . down past the Shell building to Pennzoil and turn right, . . . to the crane . . . to the parking garage . . . to the finish line). It was kinda fun to visualize the day of the race, where I hope to pick up the pace, refuse to let anyone else pass, and kick for home. Mental practice.
The other part of the dress rehearsal was actually doing the "dress" part, and I found out "what not to wear." I'm trying to come up with a plan of how to deal with a really cold start line, the chance for warming during the race, and yet "don't do anything new on race day." I like the way tights feel on my legs, and they don't get too hot, but after 2o miles they have a tendency to chafe some very odd places on the . . . on my . . . well, on the wobbly bits. So I experimented with going Speedo under the tights, thinking this would preserve, protect and defend said wobbly bits.
So help me, God.
Dave Scott and Mark Allen notwithstanding, men were not intended to run in Speedos--even Speedos concealed under running tights. I'll just leave it at that.
So, the plan--especially if you are local and might try to spot me on the course--is to go to the start gate with a long sleeve to discard and loose running pants that I can chuck just before the gun or leave on as conditions dictate. If I keep the pants, I'll have running shorts I have used on long runs. Up top, short sleeve red top that will be high viz in the crowd. For warmth: arm warmers, black skull cap and black gloves I can chuck or hand off when it gets warmer.
Oh, and plenty of Body Glide, especially on the chestal area. With temps in the 40s, it is going to be Nipperific.