There are millions of people that have been preparing for these races. A couple of which are from my neck of the woods and have been able to witness THEM IN TRAINING: weekday mornings swarming Alice C. Wainwright Park (AWP) left and right (literally), and weekends rushing the streets and sidewalks of Miami like if some secret adventure race was going on.
Some of the runners competing I've just recently had the pleasure of meeting while a few others have been inspiring, pushing, and racing for years (coming up on 14 years Danny!).
From the bottom of my heart I wish you a STRONG, cramp free, lactic acid build up free, bowl-movement free, blister free, chafe free SPECTACULAR RACE! Since most of the people I know who are running are either heading to the airport right about now, are already on a plane to O'Hare (CHI), or are packing up to leave to Key West bright and early, I wanted to give you a little something to entertain your travels.
Whether it's your first or your twenty first marathon, the experience will be unforgettable, not only for the miles and miles or markers you will pass, but for the memories that you have built and the person you have become on this journey to this race.
It is going to be hard....but you will not die. In fact, if you trust your training and the crazy guys that are training you, you will be happily surprised at what you will accomplish. When in doubt...always repeat out loud...I will finish ;)
TAKE in the WHOLE ADVENTURE! From the traveling to the dinners, from the warm-up to the post race freebies! Enjoy it all! For this small fracture of space in time, you will be living in a RUNNER dream world
TAKE IN THE CROWD! Be encouraged by the voices of people, ones you know and others you've never met, cheering for you as if you were a superstar! According to Wikipedia (not the best source-I know) "Superstar is a term used to refer to a celebrity who has great popular appeal and is widely known, prominent or successful in some field." GUESS WHAT? To many people back here in Miami, you are just that! Let their celebrations of your accomplishment along the course serve as fuel to get you through the tough parts of the race.
TAKE IN THE GLORY! The pain, you'll feel, the cramps, you'll deal with, and the millions of voices in your head making you question why you are out there will be ALL BE GONE minutes after you cross that finish line...well maybe not the pain in your legs (details details), but the glory of your finish will last forever. Knowing that what you've accomplished is no small feat by any means--NOT just in completing the race but following through with/committing to the training---that is what sets you apart from everyone else!
The hard part is done...
Now you get to race and CELEBRATE!