Potentials at Shamrock: Ugly, bad and good

Shamrock Half Marathon logoI'd be lying if I didn't admit to be anxious about my 6th Shamrock Half Marathon. Sure I don't have a time goal, but I do want to have a good race that springboards me into an even better period of training. Here are 3 scenarios playing out in my head right now as to how this weekend will go. (And maybe I should put a footnote not to take me too seriously, but you will anyway ...)

The ugly Let's start in reverse with the worst that could happen. I've been trying not to compare these past two months of training to years past when I obsess over Shamrock.

Let's get this out of the way first -- there has been no obsessing this year. But over the weekend I thought about how great last year's training cycle was and how I knew I was going to PR no matter what happened.

From Jan. 1 to race day, I've probably run 20% less than a year ago, which taking that factor alone gives me flashbacks to my worst Shamrock experience ever -- Shamrock No. 2 in 2008 -- when plantar fasciitis settled in and smacked me around to the point I seriously thought I'd DNF.

That's my ultimate fear and one that rarely crosses my mind.

The bad I've been mentally beat up by a lot of races in the past year. Even the good races had their moments in which I struggled mentally. I believe that I over raced last year even if several of them were used as training races.

That's the bad that could happen this weekend. I don't want to get beat up even more. I just want to leave Virginia Beach happier than when I arrived.

The good Here's that fine line of being happy because of a certain time and being happy because I raced effectively.

I want to strike a balance. I want a time that gives me confidence; I want to experience that gratification a race can bring knowing I did all I could do for the shape that I'm in.

I know that a PR is most likely not going to happen, but I also know that my legs have a lot to give these days.

Around 9 a.m. Sunday when I'm finishing my celebratory Yuengling on the beach, I'll be sure to tweet my initial thoughts. They could very be a mixture of all three things at the same time ...