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Milton, Ontario, Canada

Monday, April 28, 2014

Mississauga Marathon: Race Day Strategy

I've gotta say, I had that feeling today. That "I can do this" feeling.

Part of it was my constant re-framing of positive thoughts in my head.

The whole, trust the training mantra.

Getting the play list ready.

Chatting with Peter over Facebook (spoiler, he won't let me get off easy trying to dull the edges on the goal) and confirming that we I CAN do this (Peter's already done it). He said all the right things to me today, that's for sure.

Of course, as always, Sam has been a constant text companion, building up my confidence as well. She will be running the half marathon and will wait around for Amy, Patty, Emma, Peter and I. She's a great gal, that's for sure. She's also given me something else to help boost my mental game on race day
I knew from the moment I opened this that I would wear it on May 4th.
My DailyMile friends, my imaginary chat-board friends, my colleagues, my family - they are all behind me this week, this Sunday. Everyone is tolerating my newest companion as well

The course map
And so, this leads me to strategy. Because it is time.

Strategy: Clothing
Easy. I'm running for a princess. I'm wearing a skirt.

Depending on the weather I may end up with my arm sleeves (which are black). Sunscreen, body glide, and a pace band (even though Peter keeps telling me that my job is to run, not check time) will complete the outfit.

Strategy: Fuel and Water
I will start the day with a plain bagel with butter and cheddar cheese. A small coffee, small apple juice and my Minnie Mouse tumbler of water. I plan to be done by 5:30am as we will leave for the start by 5:45-6am. I will carry a banana to the start line and eat it around 6:45-7am. Mint gum as always. Like each of my other two marathons, I will start with a throw away bottle of water so that I don't have to worry about water stations for the first 10-12k. I'm going to carry 5 gels. Maybe six. While I've only ever taken 4 in my past marathon's, I needed them sooner during Around the Bay this year and I don't want to be caught empty handed. After I get rid of my throw away bottle, I will be using the water stations for water and Gatorade. My goal is to only walk through every other station (I can run and drink at the same time and Mississauga has good, squeezable cups). I suspect that my past success in the marathon has been aided greatly by these short breaks, so I'm not going to worry about walking through stations at all. Peter's game with this plan as well.

Strategy: Pace
Stay with Peter.

We are going to take advantage of the early and easy parts and the downhills but won't allow ourselves to push more than 10s faster on the downhills.

Stay with Peter.

Strategy: Mental
Yes, I can.

Yes, I will.

I will have music. Yes. There will be an eclectic mix of tunes. I will take the early and easy parts in. I will smile. I will enjoy. I will embrace the suck. I will not get ahead of myself as I need to run the first 10k before I can worry about the last 10k. I will enjoy Southdown and look for friends and other runners during the out and back. I will take KM 30-35, one kilometer at a time.

Stay with Peter.

I will stay focused and enjoy the joy of running. I will pull on the strength of everyone near and far cheering for me and wishing me well. I will know that no matter what, I will disappoint no one.

I will run the very best race that I can on that day.


  1. Add me to the list of people that believe you can do this! You have rocked an amazing and inspirational training season! I have no doubt you can do this.

  2. hmmm my comment disappeared so I'll try again. I too am a believer. Especially in the power of positive thinking. The marathon is 90% mental and 10% physical and it's so important to believe. Have a great race on Sunday. You are trained and ready.

  3. I believe in you! Good luck and believing in yourself is the first step!!

  4. You will do amazing!! You have got this!!

  5. I'll be there to witness this. Cannot miss the partaay!! My strategy Stay with Sam (wait for meeeee).

  6. Ya ya ya!! So happy to read this. You got this thing!!

    (boy, that Sam is clever with her bracelet - last week I was kicking myself that when I ordered mine i didn't get a couple of them, because I was thinking you could use one. And boom, there's Sam way ahead of me already.)

  7. Lose the band and just run with Peter. Let him do the work. You've got this. Don't stop believin'!!

  8. You're gonna do great Nicole! It seems like your body is ready, you just need to make sure you keep your head in the game! Remember, we're all going to be there with you in spirit!!

  9. You've got this!!! I think the skirt is a perfect choice! I can't wait to see how you do!


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