I know it's been a really long time since I posted here, but I wanted to bump this up and give an update and explain what my new running goals are.
Over the past year I have been still running, just not too extensively (in relation to marathon training). Over the last few months, I've been averaging about 10-20 miles a week.
Even though I do have a goal of running the 2011 Seattle Marathon on Nov. 27 (and, as a smaller, more immediate goal, the Bellingham Bay Half Marathon on Sept. 25). However (however!), my main focus is to keep running. I think over the past couple years I have been way too focused on the end result (the Seattle Marathon! everything else is just boring runs leading up to it ...), and I need to focus more on the process instead of the result. I have known that is how to most realize success in life and used to apply that to running and otherwise but realized recently that I have gotten away from that in all aspects of my life.
So, I am going to continue to update here as I focus on training for the Seattle Marathon but the aim of my mental training will be to focus on the process of enjoying the process and experiencing every run for what it is. Maybe I will end up never running a marathon. Or maybe I will run 100-mile races one day. Who knows.
Obviously I do still have a plan. I am going to follow this ... http://www.runnersworld.com/article/...X5X7-4,00.html
... with approximately 10 percent added on to the runs. I may not run those exact runs on those exact days, but I plan to keep it to within a day (i.e. I may run miles scheduled for Tuesday on either Monday or Wednesday). Yesterday was actually Day 1 of the 16-week plan, even if all I had to do that day was "rest."
So, there you go. I will focus on the runs themselves and let Marathon Day (and Half Marathon Day) come as they will, trusting that as long as I enjoy the process and dedicate myself to that process, the race itself will go well. And if something happens that derails this plan, I will take it with a grain of salt and move on, continuing to run and perhaps planning for a later marathon. There's always this one on Dec. 31 in Bellingham: http://www.skagitultrarunners.com/lastchance/