Next Sunday, May 5th, I’m going to be running the Goodlife Fitness 2013 Toronto Marathon. This will be my second full marathon and my third and final race of the spring. I am incredibly happy with the way my marathon training has been going this time around. I’ve done a lot of things differently this year, but I believe following Marathon Training Plan A from Jack Daniels’ Running Formula-2nd Edition has had the most impact. By following this program closely I’ve set two new PRs in the last two months: half marathon (1:41 at Chilly) and 30k (2:32 ATB). With no false modesty, this race should make it a perfect 3/3. I’ve come up with three goals for the race, all of which I believe are very attainable.
Goals for the 2013 Toronto Marathon
Goal 1 – 3:30 (PR)
Goal 2 – Sub 3:40 (PR)
Goal 3 – Sub 4:00 (PR)
For the duration of the marathon training program, all of my paces have been based off a VDOT score of 45. This means I should be able to run a 3:28 marathon with a race pace of 4:56/km. It sounds a little daunting to me. After all, that’s close to an hour better than last year.
For the 2013 Toronto Marathon, I plan on using a very similar race strategy to the one I used on Around the Bay, with one exception. The first half of Toronto is mostly downhill where as the end of Around the Bay is mostly uphill. I can probably gain some time on the downhills without putting in too much extra effort, then settle into my race pace for the fairly flat second half (is that a positive split?) I’ve run the relay portion of the big downhill near Casa Loma before, so I know what to expect. I just need to make sure that I’m smart about it and not go too fast on the downhills.
For fuel I’m going to eat the same mix of snacks I’ve been training with (dried figs, dark chocolate pretzels and teddy grahams!) every 30 minutes and take a few sips of water at every other water station.
My marathon goal last year was just to finish and enjoy and that’s exactly what I did. I came in at around 4:20 but I figured that any time I got the following year would most likely be a PR. This year I’ve been doing a lot of long runs at marathon goal pace and I had a great 30k race at Around the Bay. I know I can achieve my goals, I just need to stay focused and believe in the training. I really can’t wait for race day!