Monster Month — the month before the marathon when all sh*t hits the fan — lived up to its infamy. Work, life, training everything has been a little crazier than usual.

I ended September with the inability to walk…my left knee had given in: I was devastated…I had that empty feeling in my stomach. I thought my three months of training had gone to waste. I had to take nearly three weeks off, during which time I was supposed to run at least 18 miles once or twice. I spared no expense to get myself together: acupuncture, massage therapy (by the Yankees massage therapist), and new shoes.

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The weekend before last I ran a strong 13 miles in 2 hours (9 min/mile) and so I felt as though I had gotten myself together. However, just last week, I was having trouble running 2 miles because my knees were killing. I am just praying my knees feel strong.

My other minor issue: asthma. Unfortunately, over the past couple weeks, my long dormant asthma which has been mainly tamed by running…is flaring up.¬† I am not too sure why; however, I am doing whatever I can to ameliorate it.

For the next couple days, I am sleeping early (as is possible), eating pasta for nearly every meal, and resting my body. Also, I will be trying to figure out what my plan is for the run (pace, what ifs, etc). I am thinking the following: For the first 13 miles I will hold back to 11 minutes per mile; for the next 7 miles I will increase to 10:30 per mile; and, hopefully finish strong at 10 minutes per mile. Honestly, I have no idea whether I can do this — the most I have run is 16 miles and I was about to collapse by the end of it.

Thanks for all your support and donations. I still need to raise $1,000 by this weekend (or else it comes out of my credit card!), so any donations would be sincerely appreciated. All the money goes for cancer research through the Lance Armstrong Foundation. Donate here!!!