In 24 hours, thousands of runners will head to the streets of Minneapolis and St. Paul for the Twin Cities Marathon, and we’ll face the same thing: a bit of cold.
Dressing for marathons usually can be a guessing game, but for me, this one is especially challenging. The temps are expected to dip near freezing and that means layers. While layers are fine for tackling a normal training run, they’re not so great for racing.
Making it more difficult can be traveling to races, as you have to anticipate everything you might possibly need for the race and pack it. Usually, that means a pretty full bag for me because I’m never quite sure what I want or need.
But I’m excited to run this year’s Twin Cities Marathon for the first time since 2009. As part of the journey, I’m raising money for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, bringing extra meaning to the cause. A few days ago, they sent me a lime green singlet as a thank you for the money my generous supporters contributed to the JDRF – but wearing it during the race might be a bit of a stretch with the cool temps.
Instead, I’ll be bundled up, and hoping to keep warm enough to stay relatively comfortable on the course, one of the best I’ve run. This marks marathon No. 15 for me, and the Twin Cities is one of my favorite – well organized, great support from spectators and overall a rewarding experience. They even do the finish correctly – handing out finisher shirts after you cross the line rather than beforehand at the expo. It makes those shirts a little more special for me.
While I’m excited for the race, I’m also excited to have it over – and what comes next. No, not the oncoming promise of winter, snow and months of spending more time inside rather than out, but building a base of swimming and cycling in anticipation of my Ironman Training. Of course, my running will continue, but I’m excited for the journey into all three disciplines. In the approximately 4-6 weeks I’ve been dabbling with mixing the three sports, I’ve noticed a bump in fitness. As I get further into training, I expect the trend to continue – and improvements in all 3 phases of triathlon.
For now, though, it’s time to head out the door for my final tuneup run before the marathon, and the start of my carbo loading for tomorrow’s race.