It's a little hard for me to believe that I only have 7 weeks left to prepare for the Albany Marathon. I'm excited. I'm nervous already. I really want to break 3 hours. I believe I'm in that kind of shape, but I have doubts. I've had about as close to a perfect training schedule as I could have had. I've hit almost all of my workouts. I've avoided injury. I've avoided illness. I've been able to do doubles. I've adhered to the recovery weeks in my schedule.
But... 6:50 per mile still seems fast to me. How do I get over that? Saturday, I did a 20 miler with 10 miles at marathon pace. I kept most of the miles in the 6:46 to 6:49 range. But a couple crept up to 6:56 and 6:57. It was such a struggle during the 19th mile. Granted, that run put me just over 80 miles for the week, so I was running on tired legs. But shouldn't 6:50 feel easier than that? I just don't know.
Today I did the "easy" track workout. It's a 5x600m workout. It's easy enough to not wipe me out for the next day, but hard enough that I can't mail it in. I have to focus and finish. I did 2:09, 2:08, 2:05, 2:05, and 2:03. It felt great, and if I had time, I would have done 3 or 4 more even though the schedule called for only 5. Tomorrow calls for 15 miles. I'll try to do 10 or so of those at marathon pace. I have to get to where 6:50 feels something close to comfortable.