Three days left until the big race. At this point there is absolutely nothing I can do to change how it is going to go down. The training is long over, the weather is set, and the fee has been paid. I have no idea if I am ready for this race. I think I am but I won't really know until it is all over.
This will be my sixth marathon and what is interesting about this one is that I will be doing it completely alone (not counting the several thousands other runners). What I mean is that I will be driving to, running in, and coming home from the race by myself. I only know one other person actually running in the marathon but who knows if I will even see him there. This is a strange situation to be in as it will be my first marathon without anyone else.
So how is this going to affect my run? I usually like being able to do my own thing before a race so I certainly won't mind being alone in the morning. But on the other hand it also means that I need to get myself to the start and I won't have anyone to divert my nervous energy onto. It's always nice to have someone around that you can take your mind off what is soon to come. I've only done one marathon the whole way with someone else (I was a pacer) but it always seems much easier to keep up a pace when you have someone there with you. Even if it is for a short time there is some psychological benefit to running alongside someone instead of being out on your own. Probably because you can put some of the focus on what they are doing instead of constantly worrying about your own running. It'd be nice to have that during this race but oh well.
The hardest part though, is knowing that both during and after the race there will be no one to share it with. It's nice seeing a friendly face during some tough stretch, it really helps to lift your spirits. And as you near the finish it is always a boost to know that someone is waiting for you as you cross the finish line. If there are other people running the race with you, just knowing that you will get to hang out afterwards and relive the day is a nice way to cap it all off. Not this time though. This race is all business. It's going to be a real test for me, both physical and mental. Three more days.