Hail to The Victors!
Kimmie, I know this has got to be frustrating for you. Seems to be that getting sick one of the real risks of signing up for these early spring/late winter marathons.
I would caution against trying to get in that last 20 miler given the guidance from your Doctor. I believe that those long runs do weaken you and would make you susceptible to getting more sick and prolonging your recovery. Having said that, 10 days is a long time and if you feel better after 5 or 6 days, it might be worth a few short easy runs to see how you feel.
I think you have a range of options. I might be tempted to run it as a long training run (either with your cousin or closer to a 4:30 pace) and then find another marathon maybe in April or May to go for your goal pace.
I don't think I'd force the issue and try to get that 20+ in so soon.
Your toughness is made up of equal parts persistence and experience. You don't so much outrun your opponents as outlast and outsmart them, and the toughest opponent of all is the one inside your head." - Joe Henderson
Determination: The feeling you get right before you try something incredibly stupid.
Lou, (aka Mr. predawnrunner), MD, USA | Lou's Brews | firstname.lastname@example.org
I think I will run the National marathon- the full, not the half... Ah!!!
Dave, you may have heard that miles 14-26 are brutally hilly there.... which is a far cry from flat at the beach.
I just have to hope that it doesn't fill up too quickly.
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