Should I Stay or Should I Go?

Well the Publix Georgia Marathon is just two weeks away.  As you well know I have not been able to train for it like I wanted to for many different reasons.  Though there were countless small reasons two main ones have really defined my training during this 26.2 Quest.  The fact that I didn't give myself enough time to train sufficiently, and the resulting injury, became the two biggest reasons why I couldn't train like I wanted to.  Now I find myself with a decision to make, and it is not a fun decision..... Should I Stay, or Should I Go?

I committed later than I should have and so I started serious training late and too far behind in the schedule to catch up adequately. I was confident that it wouldn't be an issue because I have done this before and I know what I need to do to get across the finish line.  That confidence turned out to be my initial step in the wrong direction.

I made the mistake of thinking that it wouldn't be an issue, so I pushed ahead without any regard for the signs that were obviously telling me something different. I was pushing my body to try and catch up to the point that I should be training at which resulted in excess fatigue and frustration fairly quickly.  I neglected to take my own advice of not pushing too hard and not building mileage too fast which resulted in a lot of achy pains.... nothing a real runner like me couldn't deal with - right?

As the mileage built so did my concern.  I wasn't feeling very motivated and was having more issues than normal with the weather, wake up times, and just overall enthusiasm.  I really didn't have any idea what I was going through and I had lost all sense of direction.  Those little achy pains seemed to stick around more than I liked and I once again didn't listen to my own advice and ran through it at times that I know I shouldn't have.

The little achy pains didn't hesitate long before they started to take an unwelcomed part in each and every one of my runs.  Most of my training was still going good, but I could feel this little hint of something not being right in my thigh early in each of the runs and then for the next couple days following each run.  I had to cut my training way back, even to the point where I started to get concerned about the finish line at the end of the 26.2 distance.  If you look at my training it has been sporadic at best for the last few weeks.

So now I find myself not knowing what the right path forward is.  I am not sure if I should stick to my original goal, complete this marathon, and then worry about dealing with the consequences later, or if I should step back to the half marathon and complete a race I know that I am capable of right now. There are a lot of emotional attachments to this as you are well aware if you have ever been at this point or known someone else that has.

If I chose either path I will continue to cut back my mileage to almost nothing over the next two weeks to give this thigh a chance to recover.  I am confident I could make the 26.2 distance, although it may hurt really bad, but the 13.1 distance has been proven the last two weekends so even if I stopped training completely for the next two weeks I will cross that finish line without an issue.

I won't go through all the different reasons I am using to justify going the full distance, nor will I try to make my argument for cutting it short and just doing the 13.1.  What I am looking for is your input.  I know you don't know all that much about me, but if you just go back a few weeks and read my posts here and on DailyMile, you will be able to understand enough of where I am to at least give me your opinion.  I KNOW everyone has an opinion, and yes I am asking for it. :)

So what do you think?  Should I Stay the course, or go 13.1?