Thinking about my goals for Eugene, I have modest ones (I think):
1) Finish the training cycle with no bad Achilles Tendonitis problems. (Lots of preventative exercises being done)
2) Finish with pace under 9:00 m/m..want to see an 8 there. 8) This is a sub-3:55 marathon...i.e. I only want to knock about 90s off my PR. This assumes I have a good training buildup at least as good as CIM (CIM == California International Marathon in Sacramento) , and that the marathon gods smile again on race day of course.
3) Enjoy the race! Perhaps take pictures AND do the PR 8)
What is also special about a sub-3:55 goal is that this is the new BQ (Boston Marathon Qualification) time for men age 60.
At my current age the BQ time is 3:40..which is an insane pace right now. In some fantasy world...where I did not have to work and had a coterie of trainers and PT people babying me all the time I *might* be able to get there...but I would bet not...probably I'd get injured. And doesn't matter anyway because I do have to work.
However, in November, 2015 I turn 60...to qualify for the next Boston (April 2016) I could do that at CIM sub-3:55 in Dec 2014.
So, if I can shave 90s off my current, new PR time, and hold that 2 1/2 years from now. (CIM would be my race for that you can be assured!) I would BQ.
You may think this is a slam dunk... I do not. If you look at the age grading calculators a 3:40 at age 56 is about the same relative effort as a 3:55 at age 60. But, on the other hand, it's well known that you can improve for several years in the marathon (because it's so complex and involves optimizing so many things).
So I just *might* be able pull it off...it seems in the realm of the possible. I admit I would be crazy happy to do this.
As for getting to actually run Boston, I would guess that's very unlikely. I won't be BQ-20 or even BQ-1 I would guess so I'll be last on the list in my age group to get any entry.
I would not care...getting the BQ is the victory..running Boston itself is just the victory lap...heck I lived there and watched tons of them so I'm not caring that much about running it...would be nice but whacha gonna do?
But it all starts with being able to run <3:55 races at all.