Taper, Goals, and a Playlist

3 Oct

Holy crap for crap – less than 4 full days until race day.

3 days 14 hours left until wineglass marathon!

It really feels like taper just started.  I set a reminder on my phone for last Sunday to start putting together my race day packing list – and I’ve been snoozing it like a champ ever since.  Yeah, I might want to actually get on that.  I’m pretty sure after driving two hours to the race, I don’t want to discover I’m missing pants.

Taper has been going surprisingly well.  There have been some freak-outs over weather, some inexplicable ~emotions~, and some intense beer cravings.  But overall, I’ve been handling it pretty well.

My allergies were acting up on Monday and it scared me enough to leave work early.  I sent a text to my main man that said “home sick.  feel like crap.  pop-pop gets a treat?” and sure enough, he delivered.  (If you don’t get the Arrested Development reference, you are just not on my level.)

george bluth loves ice cream sandwiches

nestle tollhouse ice cream sandwich of deliciousness

This ice cream sandwich was nothing short of life changing.

I’m feeling pretty good overall – I still feel twinges of pain in my knee, especially while driving, but they’ve also been accompanied with the standard phantom taper pain twinges everywhere else.  I am not too terribly concerned going into the race – I think that I can probably run through any pain that my knee decides to send my way …

… which is an inevitable segue to my goals for the race.

A) sub-3:35

This should come as a shock to absolutely no one.  Despite my shaky half marathons during this cycle, I do believe I am capable of running under 3:35.  I think it will be close, but I think it’s achievable.  I know that while my training wasn’t perfect, I am going to arrive at the start in the best shape I have ever been in, and with 18 weeks of training that went better than it ever has before.

B) sub-3:40

If something out of my control goes wrong (weather, knee acts up, I crap my pants, etc), I’d still like to think I could squeak under 3:40.  I need this B goal to keep my head in the game if 3:35 starts slipping away from me.  If shit goes south, I need a reason not to quit, start walking, start crying, start begging spectators for a beer, etc.

C) Run Happy.

brooks run happy visor black and white

I have time to take stupid selfies of my visor, but not enough time to make my bed. #properbloggingtechnique

I bought this visor at the end of last week when the weather was threatening to bust out its finest monsoon for us on race day.  Even though it looks like the rain will hold off now, I think I might still wear it.  I’m lucky enough to get to run this marathon.  Regardless of how long it takes me to finish, I want to enjoy the damn day – I’ve worked too hard over the past few months to not have a little fun.  This isn’t the Olympics and running isn’t my job.  I don’t want to get so hung up on the time on the clock that it robs me of all enjoyment.


This brings me to the final part of my taper wrap-up which is the playlist.  I rarely run with music and don’t intend to for the marathon.  I will, however, be making the 2 hour drive to the start on race morning and absolutely need some tunes for that, lest I lose my mind entirely.  I actually enjoy reading other people’s playlists, and figure I should return the favor.  This playlist is a good mix of current songs I’m digging plus quintessential road trip favorites.  Presented in a meaningless order, because I always hit shuffle anyway:

1) You Oughta Know – Alanis Morissette
2) The Chain – Fleetwood Mac
3) Sugar Magnolia – Grateful Dead
4) Call Off Your Ghost – Dessa
5) The Race Is On – Grateful Dead
6) You Lie – The Band Perry
7) Truckin – Grateful Dead
8) Carry On – Fun.
9) Lose Yourself – Eminem
10) Friend of the Devil – Grateful Dead
11) What I Am – Edie Brickell
12) Sleep To Dream – Fiona Apple
13) Blood Red Summer – Coheed & Cambria
14) ‘Till I Collapse – Eminem
15) Grow Up – Cher Lloyd
16) Timorous Me – Ted Leo & the Pharmacists
17) Cowboy Casanova – Carrie Underwood
18) Dire Wolf – Grateful Dead
19) Cruise – Florida Georgia Line
20) Our Song – Taylor Swift
21) Little Lion Man – Mumford & Sons
22) Deep Elem Blues – Grateful Dead
23) Seventy Times 7 – Brand New
24) I’m the Best – Nicki Minaj
25) Crazy Kids – Ke$ha
26) Baby – Justin Bieber

As you can see, I’m a generationally challenged hippie turned angsty late-90s/early-00s teenager, who developed a soft spot for shitty pop-country and the usual pump-me-up-I’m-running-a-marathon rap.


I doubt I’ll be back around these parts before the race, so this is Upstate Runner signing off.  See y’all on the other side.


5 Responses to “Taper, Goals, and a Playlist”

  1. runner1313 October 3, 2013 at 9:35 am #

    Have a great race!

  2. jenbigham October 3, 2013 at 10:56 am #

    You can do it!!!!! So excited for you! I love the Run Happy goal. My best marathons have been when I put the stress aside as much as possible and just thought about how lucky I was to be running and racing! I hope the weather stays cool enough and you have an amazing day! Love your playlist! So diverse! 😉

  3. HollieisFueledByLOLZ October 3, 2013 at 12:20 pm #

    I am very excited for you and I know you will reach your goals. Since we are both not running a race together it should work out for perfect weather LOL. I love your goal of run happy and honestly any marathon you can finish and be smiling you have succeeded.

  4. Laura @losingrace October 4, 2013 at 12:15 pm #

    YESSS so glad Paul brought you an ice cream sandwich—good man he is!! I love your Run happy visor, super cute and I think it will come in handy Sunday for you! I really can’t wait to see you and give you a huge ass hug and high five because damnit SUNDAY IS OUR DAY!

  5. olivetorun October 6, 2013 at 7:40 am #

    Sending tons of positive vibes your way! Hope you have a great race!

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