I’m Coming for you Phoenix.

There is less than a week until my second marathon.

To be honest, this race has snuck right up on me.  It feels like yesterday when I began debating if I wanted to make this my goal race (in reality that was 4 months ago). Now it’s less than a week away!  It’s hard to believe that six months ago I was dealing with a stress fracture.

As I limped into work August 22, I knew my fall racing and marathon schedule were out the door.  

Was I done running forever?

No, of course not…but I was done running for at least 2 months.  I rested and recovered the entire two months.  It was an injury and time that I felt no need to strenuously cross train through.  I didn’t want too and I didn’t crave workouts…Looking back I was extremely burnt out and needed the rest.  I didn’t feel pressure to cross train because I wasn’t training for anything.

After completely recovering, I took two months to build up some mileage (smartly).  It was then (3 months ago), I decided maybe I could run another marathon (Why I chose the Phoenix Full).  So here I am now less than a week before the race.  I’m still in denial it is coming up so soon.  With my previous marathon, it felt like months of preparation and weeks of build up.  With Phoenix it feels like…surprise…time to go to this race (although I’ve talked about it a lot).

In less than a week, I toe the line (and bum the line in runderwear) at my first goal race of 2015.

I’m nervous.
I’m excited.
I’m ready.

With any race, people ask goals and racing strategy.  The answer is I honestly don’t know.  

I do know for the Phoenix marathon I want to finish healthy and strong.  I have only raced one full marathon and it was 18 months ago.  I don’t remember what racing that distance is like.  Sure in the last 18 months, I’ve run close to 10 different 20 milers but 20 miles and 26.2 miles aren’t the same.  I would know as I rode the pain train at New York. I might dry heave and collapse after mile 20.

The internet never forgets. 

Mile 13ish

Might as well be happy right?
Might as well be happy right?

Mile 22: Get me out of this place. 

Marathons are so fun!
Marathons are so fun!
Thanks to the famous jewelry designer Erica Sarah for this shot.  #Neverforget the dry heaving at mile 24.
Thanks to the famous jewelry designer Erica Sara for this shot. #Neverforget the dry heaving at mile 24.

My primary goal for any race, especially a marathon is to finish healthy. It always has been my first goal and it always will be.  If I can start and finish a race healthy than I consider it a success.

My B goal is to finish under 3:20. A 3:20 puts me around my PR of 3:17. I’m going into Phoenix much less trained. While the course, the race and logistics are different, it doesn’t make up for less training. I wouldn’t have trained any harder or any more and I am running this racing coming from an injury. A big positive is, I won’t have to be up 7 hours before the race. I also won’t have to travel into a large overwhelming city.  I will be at peace in the morning and be able to relax.

With any goal race, a PR is always the reach and major goal. I do think it’s a huge reach goal for this time but I’ve remained pretty healthy post stress fracture so I don’t think it’s out of reason.  I’ve been smart with my training and rested when I needed too.

In summary, I would like to continue to get comfortable with the full marathon distance.  My main goal is to enjoy myself and finish injury free.  Any time you can finish a race healthy whether it’s a 55 sprint to a marathon is a good day.  I want running to be life long and once race (good or bad) will never define my running.

On any note, I’m coming for you Phoenix with runderwear and racing flats.

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  1. YEAH HOLLIE!! I’m so excited for you. You’ve done everything you can to set yourself up for a good race it sounds like. Good luck!!

  2. Soooo excited for you, I feel like I’m racing lol. GOOD LUCK!!! You have done such an AWESOME job coming back from an injury in a SMART way, something a lot of runners can learn from! Pack me in your suitcase, I want away from the cold!

  3. So excited for you. Lots of carbs this week, stay healthy, relax, and enjoy the brief break from running. You’re going to have a great race. Enjoy! Can’t wait to hear about it 🙂

  4. I’ve loved following your marathon journey Hollie. You know my theory on the marathon; a brutal debut means a successful follow up and beyond. Very excited for you. Run in yourself for 16-18, then forget the watch and go for it! Don’t worry about anyone or anything but the moment you deserve!! Enjoy it!!

  5. You’re going to do great! You’ve done the training, you have a goal, and you have a sound race strategy. Enjoy the moment. PS – the weather is going to be ideal!

  6. I hope Phoenix is ready for you 😉

    I think having a more relaxed attitude and not having to worry about the hassle of travel will negate being slightly undertrained (from your point of view – I think you’ve trained well and avoided burnout in the process). Whatever happens it will be a great race for you, but I genuinely think that you can smash 3:20…which will just be the icing on the cake.

  7. I am so excited for you! I told myself that if I can break a 21 minute 5K next month then I’m finally giving myself permission to race in runderwear.

    1. I think you would look great in runderwear. I can’t wait to hear about you breaking 21 at the Adrenaline 5k Liz. I wish I could be there to cheer you on!

  8. Hollie, you have the right idea with training and goals. I have seen so many people throw it away for a run, run when injured before the doctor clears them, etc, just set themselves back. Even if you are less trained, you still have a very strong running background and base, that will count for a lot. You’re extremely well-trained and have listened to your body to successfully make it to the starting line injury-free which is more than many people who set out training for a marathon ever do. That in itself is a victory.

    ‘Thons are unpredictable but I think you can smash 3:20 ;). You’re strong and smart about it, you got this.

    1. It doesn’t seem worth it to me…there are always more fish in the sea of the races. Thanks as always for your support Amy!

      1. You’re welcome. I’m glad someone else has a goal of just being a lifelong runner. Several of my training partners are masters and grand masters runners who’ve seen their lifetime PRs. They joke saying the finish clocks lie and that a 21 minute 5K now feels as hard as a 16 minute did. And I’m inspired that they’re still getting up on Sunday morning to run 8-10 miles!!

  9. RUNDERWEAR WEATHER!!! Enjoy every mile – any day you can cover 26.2 miles on your feet is a good day.

  10. Best of luck, Hollie! You are going to rock it! I’m sooo excited for you!
    Funny, when people ask me my goal for marathons, I always say…well, as long as I’m not swept up by the crew that closes the course or as long as I don’t end up in the medical tent, ill be happy!
    Seriously though, we all have our goals, want to push ourselves and leave it all out there, but having fun on the course and being able to walk the next day should always be in the back of our minds.
    Enjoy Arizona!!! This Jersey weather has got me so enraged! Grrrr and Brrrrr!

  11. Ahhhhhh!!! Marathons make me so giddy and excited. I have butterflies for/with you. You are going too have a great time (figuratively and literally)… Just know it. Like you said, hell, just making it to the start line ready to go is a freakin accomplishment!… But, i know you will accomplish more than just the goal of finishing. Definately enjoy your own race for the first half or so…then get after it! great luck 🙂

  12. HERE WE GOOOOO!! You’ve had a great training cycle, and it sounds like you’re at a great spot mentally too–now it’s time for the fun part, and it’s time to celebrate the past few months of hard work. Can’t wait to see how it goes!

  13. you’re going to do GREAT. I cannot wait to stalk you race morning (there better be tracking!), and please bring some of that warmer weather back with you :

  14. So pleased for you Hollie 🙂 You have shown resilience, patience and hard work and really deserve to smash the living day light’s out of this marathon 😉 Good luck!

  15. Good luck, Hollie! I am rooting hard for you and definitely wish you health and joy throughout the whole race. Can’t wait for the recap!! Enjoy the travel to Phoenix too!

  16. The internet never forgets. haha. Love that motto.. but for reals.. I know you’re going to rockkk that marathon. Even though you say your not as prepared as you would like, youve had some very impressive runs and races. Especially after an injury. Best of wishes girl.!!!

  17. GO GET IT!!!!! Cannot wait to get the full report. No matter what you make all of us Oiselle runners proud! 🙂

  18. Good goals! The marathon is so unpredictable – you really never know what the day or your body will give you. I guess that’s part of the allure of 26.2 miles.

    Enjoy the ride and good luck!!!

  19. Ahhhhh goo luck!

    I would definitely agree that not having to be awake (Much less freezing cold) for 7 hours before a marathon sounds like a plus!

    And may I say, Amen to wanting to enjoy a race and be a lifelong runner!

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