I've been resting, stretching, soaking, rolling, massaging, and ultrasound, um, 'ing my right calf and legs in general. Tomorrow I will run 3 miles to assess whether or not it's healed up. The next three weeks will looks something like this:
February 7th - Tuesday:
√ Run 3 miles. If injury free, proceed to next step. If injured, I'm out.
√Run 5 miles. If injury free, proceed to next step. If injured, I'm out.
February 11th - Saturday:
√Run 5-6 miles. If injury free, proceed to next step. If injured, I'm out.
February 12th - Sunday:
Assuming I make it to Sunday, I'll base my final decision on whether or not to running the Hyannis Marathon based on how this 20 mile run goes. Realistically, with two weeks of not running and just a handful of miles this week before this run, I might not be able to finish 20 miles. If I'm wiped out at say 15 miles, then I'm not conditioned enough to run 26.2 miles. If I only get to 17 or 18 miles, then I'll assess my overall performance and decide if I'm conditioned enough to complete the marathon. If I complete the 20 miles, I'll most likely run the marathon regardless of how well the run went - I'll at least know I'll be able to finish it.
If everything works out, I'll follow the last two weeks of the training schedule. If I get an injury at any point along the way, I'm out. On race day my focus will be on finishing the race, which means slow and steady.
I've been back and forth over whether or not to run this race - to just call it and move on. In the end, I decided that as long as there is a reasonable chance at completing this race, then I have to try, to not try just wouldn't sit well with me. While not intended, the question that now keeps me going is: Can I successfully run 26.2 with less than ideal training? For this to be what I would call successful, my overall performance has to be better than my first marathon. There is a chance that during the run something else goes wrong. I'm pushing myself, but I'm not going to kill myself. If my calf muscle pulls at 18 miles, for instance, I'm not going to try and run or even walk on it for 8 miles.
This is a last ditch attempt to show up at the starting line on the 26th, and as is with all last ditch efforts, it's not a great plan, it wouldn't even make a good plan C much less a plan B, but it is a realistic plan......