A pre-race ritual for me is to begin checking the long range weather forecast for race day. Over the years, I have come to realize that the 20, 15 or even 10 day forecast is not very accurate. I could be even more critical and say the 48 hour forecast is not reliable. However, I keep checking in hope of finding the numbers I want. I have already entered the "zip" codes for Schenectady and Albany, NY into my computer. When I do find a "perfect" forecast, I only have to wait 24 hours to find the revised numbers have jumped by 15 degrees. How did that happen? Then they shift back to the "perfect" numbers. Along with the numbers, I see the description, "partly cloudy", "mostly cloudy", "sunny", and on and on. Various combinations for me to contemplate for a period of 30 days. Then it boils, (no pun intended), down to the night before and hopefully an accurate forecast. Shouldn't the "AccuWeather" forecast be accurate? Or maybe "Accu" doesn't really stand for accurate.
My training and planning can and does account for the many different facets of a marathon. The one thing I have no control over is the weather. So, why stress over something you have no control over? Maybe it is a method to not become complacent. I will be running my marathon 5 weeks from today. Soon, I will begin my quest for the perfect weather forecast for October 11th.
The photo accompanying this post is of a thermometer prior to the 2008 Mohawk-Hudson Marathon. "Official" race time temperature was 44 degrees. Oh, to have a repeat of the conditions from last year!