I'm only two weeks out, now, from the Wisconsin Marathon up in Kenosha, and I can feel the effect of all the training miles taking their toll.
I've tried a slightly different tact in the later portions of this cycle. I'm trying to keep my weekly miles from climbing too high, but also aiming for my weekly workouts to longer and more sustained efforts. Basically, more "easy" paced 8 and 10 mile jaunts, and the like.
But calendar has been busy, in general this spring, and even though I've tried to careful with my mileage weeks, the overall grind has begun to take it's toll. It's made for some extra creaky, extra groggy mornings, and worse, my IT bands have been barking at me a lot more than usual. I've been spending a lot of extra time stretching and rolling out my legs before and after sessions.
We'll see how all this translates to my performance up in Kenosha up on the May 2nd. I'm not just going up there for a fun run, I still have time goals I'd like to meet. It's supposed to be a flat course along the Lake Michigan shore, so it'll be a lot like running in Chicago. I'd be thrilled to turn in something at 3:55, or in the low 3:50s, but I've felt good about my build-ups before and then run marathons that fell well short of those goals. We'll see. I plan to manage my workouts the next two weeks very carefully. I want to be sharp for the race, but I don't want to go in feeling worn down, either.
After that, I'm not sure yet. My summer plans remain undefined. If Kenosha goes well and I feel good the week following, maybe I'll start to look seriously toward Burning River in Ohio in August - A race I could run for the experience, like a fun run, if you can call 100 miles that. Otherwise, I'll dial it back over the summer, focus on a few 5 or 10K and then slowly build my mileage back up for Chicago in October.
So, much depends on these next few weeks...