life Reading Travel


May 22, 2024

FEELING: Excited to head up to Michigan!! And fine, kind of anxious about the race itself. I know the upcoming race is just for fun (I mean – I’m not going to win, lol), and it doesn’t really matter how things shake out in the grand scheme of things. Still, it would be really rewarding and fun for it to go well!

I’m not even specifically anxious about anything other than the actual running feeling . . . harder than I want it to, if that makes sense? As in, I’m worried that I will set out at my goal pace and it just does not feel sustainable? Nothing in my training suggests that this should happen but I guess it’s just some self-doubt creeping in.

I guess the truth is, if that happens I can always slow down a bit and who knows, maybe I’ll get more energy or find my groove later in the race. It’s not like it will be over quickly!

EATING: CARBZZZZ. I debated whether or not to do a ‘real’ carb load for this race, but my friend convinced me to at least attempt to come close. I don’t think there’s a huge downside. The famous (well, in running nerd circles) Featherstone Carb Load Calculator suggests ~380g carbs/day for 3 days. It’s not even lunch yet and I’m already at 162g (grahams, bagel with jam, fig bar, pretzels) so I guess I am pretty good at this.

this bag contained 46g carbs before I ate half of it

(I have eaten almost exclusively carbs today and have remained perpetually hungry. I guess this is why I do not usually subsist on 95% carbs.)

LISTENING: Peak Energy: Set Smart Priorities by The Productivity Show. I admit I am not always great about following my energy patterns. For me this means making the most out of morning hours (post kid drop-off and before lunch) and sometimes I do, but sometimes I don’t.

One thing I do is to schedule any kind of call in the afternoon (to protect the morning). Talking to people is something I can do any time of day. Creating things from scratch takes more energy.

I also kind of find this kind of thing less applicable to my clinical work. Patients are scheduled through the day and there’s not really much wiggle room there! Even if I wanted to front-load the morning, that would not work well for most patients (mostly kids in school – people always want the latest slots possible!).

READING: About to finish up How Bad Do You Want It and will dive into Let Your Mind Run on the plane! I’m also halfway through Reign (American Royals #4 — PURE CANDY).

LOOKING FORWARD TO: Getting to hang out with Josh without the kids!! It has been quite some time since our last trip together (I think maybe . . our last anniversary a year ago?) and I feel these little trips together are so good for us, and so much fun. Of course, we were supposed to head to Jacksonville for the marathon last December but neither of us made it to the starting line due to injury. I regret not doing a makeup couples weekend!


  • Reply Marianne May 22, 2024 at 1:10 pm

    So many thoughts!
    1. Of course you are nervous! You’ve worked your butt off and are someone who cares about reaching goals. Or as my dad liked to say about teaching but I think it applies broadly “scared means you care.”
    2. I am a terrible searcher of podcast archives but in probably 2024-2016 Another Mother Runner had a sports psychologist interviewed that talked about how to push yourself even when it is hard. I specifically remember it talking about the “pain cave” but my googling has failed me.
    3. However, it did lead me to my own blog post with them before my first full and I stand by the goal of taking in all you have done. (And perhaps it is the 8/29/15 episode that is now a dead link
    4. Things that have helped in my own marathons-
    a. Having my name on the front so people say it. Stickers or masking tape. I also suggest adding “1st full in 15 years!” to the back so people will cheer on that too. Have I mentioned this is a big deal!
    b. Writing something in sharpie on my arm that I want to remember or use as a mantra.
    c. A way to answer my brain when it starts telling me I don’t really need another fuel. (Use that upholder tendency and calorie up!)
    d. A pace goal temporary tattoo so if your GPS gets wonky you can look at total time to see how close you are
    e. Taking time soon after to do an unfiltered video or audio download of the race. It’s a great memento and you’ll forget a lot quickly

    Cannot wait to hear all about it!

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger May 22, 2024 at 1:34 pm

      Oh I love all of this!!! As for the audio download I’m thinking about a special edition BLP race recap. It will be niche but if it’s an extra ep that will be ok!!

      Will think about how I can make a SHU sign … haha! I don’t think Bayshore has tons of spectators but im sure there will be some!

  • Reply Kristie May 22, 2024 at 3:00 pm

    YES to a BLP race recap! So many planning aspects when it comes to training, traveling and running a race. And I (and I’m sure many others) want to hear all about it!!

    My favorite reminder leading up to a race is to trust the training. You’ve done the hard work, now you get to celebrate your strength (as Emily Halnon so aptly put it at the live show before Eugene). I will be cheering you on!

  • Reply Sesb May 22, 2024 at 4:31 pm

    Good luck! And have fun in TC.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger May 22, 2024 at 5:28 pm

      Thank you!!

  • Reply Lisa’s Yarns May 22, 2024 at 7:35 pm

    The nerves are normal! You’ve worked hard and even though you aren’t putting pressure on yourself to PR and BQ, it’s your first marathon in a long time and even a seasoned marathoner has nerves I think because it’s a big undertaking! I feel like any big endeavor is going to result in some nerves! It’s nice to also be looking forward to this trip for other reasons – namely a couples trip with Josh! So no matter what, it’s going to be great to get away, reconnect and soak in some cooler, less humid temps! I can’t wait to track and cheer from afar!

  • Reply Gwinne May 23, 2024 at 7:28 am

    Have so much fun! We love petoskey/ traverse area! Moomers ice cream is a family favorite

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger May 23, 2024 at 8:39 am

      They supposedly have it at the finish line!!!!

  • Reply Chelsea May 23, 2024 at 7:55 am

    Having done several carb loads now, I feel like I always feel gross the first day, pretty good the second day, and then like I’m craving a salad and steak the third day, lol. But I definitely feel like it helps!

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger May 23, 2024 at 8:40 am

      Good to hear bc my coach was kind of lukewarm about it. Given that everything else I’ve learned from Meghann F has been helpful I decided to go for it. I don’t feel toooooo bad so far! Oddly I’ve felt hungrier than expected, a mostly carb diet is not very satiating!

  • Reply jennystancampiano May 23, 2024 at 8:02 am

    Yes, the nerves are normal. Running a marathon is HARD, any way you look at it. You have a time goal so you’re going to run fast- there’s no way a marathon isn’t going to hurt at some point. Also, you’re trained hard for this so you’re invested in the outcome. Can you even imagine how the pros feel? I mean, they have so much pressure on them. I hope you got a chance to read Let Your Mind Run- I absolutely love that book.
    Anyway… I’m excited for your race! Hopefully it will be a beautiful race in beautiful weather, and you get to do it with Josh! I was listening to a podcast yesterday on my run, and I actually stopped to put this quote in my notes (I’m going to use this as the theme for my own race this weekend: “Experience it, and be present with whatever experience you’re having.”
    I absolutely cannot wait to hear ALL about it!!!

  • Reply Colleen May 23, 2024 at 2:38 pm

    Good luck and have fun in Michigan! I live in Ann Arbor and my parents live in TC, it’s such a fun place! Get some Moomers ice cream and wineries on Old Mission if you have time!

  • Reply Coree May 24, 2024 at 3:03 am

    Best of luck! You’ve worked so hard, and it’ll be fun! Nice bonus of time away with Josh as well.

  • Reply Marianne May 24, 2024 at 7:37 am

    One more thought – remember to hydrate! Even though it will be less horrible than FL running, you’re still sweating.

  • Reply Erica May 24, 2024 at 10:42 am

    Good luck in the marathon! The hard part is done; the race is just the victory lap.

  • Reply San May 25, 2024 at 1:51 pm

    Best of luck for the race!

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