To start, my race plan was … non-existent. Coach and I had talked on Wednesday and stepped through a couple of the goal times I had out there. “If you run 3:03 [my original B goal, and four minutes off my spring PR], we’ll sit down and figure out what we need to change. 3:01 would be okay. 2:59:59 is a lot more exciting than 3:00:10, but don’t focus too much on the splits.”
But then he opened the door: “How far under 3:00 can you go? I’m not going to guess at that.”
There it was. It was on the table that he thought I was ready, and I thought I was ready, so … Ultimately, he said to “let the race come to you,” with which I completely agreed. I was worried if I went out explicitly trying to break 3 hours and hit 6:50 pace every mile, it would be overwhelming. And what if the course was long or my watch was off?
I needed to rely on my ability to assess my perceived effort.