To those of you who just ran your “first ever” 20-miler, CONGRATULATIONS!
And to those of you who just ran your “2nd, 3rd or 10th ever” 20-miler,
At this point, you can truthfully say that you’re no longer training to run the marathon. You can now say you are running the marathon.
Right now, at this very moment... the marathon is inside of you.
And on October 9 you can stand at the 'START' with the certainty that you are prepared to run 26.2 miles.
If this was a 'tough 20' for you (and why shouldn’t you feel that way, YOU JUST RAN 20 MILES!) and you're wondering “how in the heck am I ever going to run 26.2”… don't EVER underestimate the strength and endurance you’ve acquired from months of marathon training; or the inspiring support you'll receive from running the streets of Chicago in front of 1,500,000 (plus!) cheering spectators—every one of whom is there to applaud you, to shout-out their encouragement to you and to recognize your achievement...
… that you are a marathoner.
And if you need even more support on Marathon Day, just look around you at any one of your 1,000 RMHC teammates in their Team RMHC shirts and singlets … each of whom will NOT let you fail. Just as you will not let them fail.
At the very beginning of this training journey I said, "The hardest part of running the marathon is NOT running the marathon. The hardest part of running the marathon is TRAINING to run the marathon."
And now, the hardest part of that training is completed.
(Okay. So it's not quite a "Mission Accomplished" moment—but you CAN begin to unroll the banner and check the spelling!)
Now, it's "taper time”—time to let your body recover from the 300 or 400 (plus?!) miles you have likely run over the course of the training season.
Your 'mantra' at this point—from today until Marathon Day—should be "DO. NO. HARM."
If you’ve missed a couple (or more) long-runs, don't try to play "catch up" over the next 3 weeks. Those runs are gone, and it's best to leave those missed miles behind you.
And if you feel a need to run more miles than your training schedule calls for… "step away from the edge.” (That is to say, FOLLOW YOUR TRAINING SCHEDULE!)
Finally, please accept my MOST sincere gratitude (again!), for ALL that you’re
doing to train and run and fundraise to support Ronald McDonald House Charities.
You’re THE BEST!
Train safe. Run strong.