Monday, January 3, 2011

2010 Harrisburg Marathon…

Well, I have to start somewhere, so lets start somewhere remarkable - My Second Marathon. Hopefully I can fill you in on a little bit about me as I go along.

Why my second marathon? Well…my first Marathon was as close to a failure as I would care to come. My second was an improvement of over an hour and 20 minutes, and serves as a much better indicator of my abilities. In other words I only made half of the mistakes I made in my first one.

In my first Marathon, I started too fast. This time, I tried to stay relaxed…(yea right)…the first mile was only 20 seconds too fast…the second 15…by the fourth mile I was right on my goal pace, where I would stay for the next 14 miles…That was about the time that I figured out what they mean when they say “you can split the marathon in half…the first 20 miles, and the last 6”. My first marathon had me walking for stretches shortly after the half-way point, and walking completely by the 22 mile mark. This time I was on my goal pace after 19…

That’s when the hills started…and the inner battle began. I had to walk. People began passing me. Demoralizing. Up to now, I had settled into seeing the same group of people…a few had eased out in front of me, then fell back, others had disappeared for a few miles only to reappear, but we were a group…now they started drifting past. Last year I suffered so badly that I couldn’t run, I was forced to walk. Today was different, I had the training of 1400+ miles, and I kept running. Slower than I wanted but still running. The last 4 miles HURT…but weren’t painful. I used what I knew…pick a spot and run to it, then pick another spot. Count my strides, count my breaths…persevere. Thank the volunteers, congratulate the runners passing me…get home.

Then almost as if I wasn’t ready, I finished. And I cried. It was a year of work, 1400 miles, 25 lbs lost, and it was done in one morning. I was done, goals achieved.
I hit three out of four of my goals:
     Goal #1 – Finish.
     Goal #2 – Faster than last year.
     Goal #3 – sub 4 hours.
     Goal #4 – is the goal that I would tell you if I had gotten it…

But that was it…I was done. I had spent so much time and effort and it was over so quickly…now what?

That’s where the blog comes in…I want to get faster, get better…and have fun doing it. One of the things I love about Running is that enough random people do it that everyone has a story. Sharing those stories encourages all of us, that even though we go thru most of our training alone, we are far from it. In fact its quite the opposite, every runner I have ever met wants to tell you about their last run. They talk about details…heart rate, pace, the weather, how uneven the gravel was on the shoulder because they have been spreading salt and icemelt…and Gear…I plan on a few posts about gear...what non runners don’t understand is that these details ARE what its about. Those details are what we live for.


  1. "...pick a spot and run to it, then pick another spot."
    I do that too!!! A lot of bargaining happens on those long runs. "Okay, if you run at pace to that tree up there, then you can walk if you have to."

  2. I do it all the time! but then dont walk...pick another spot. Breathe.