Sunday, October 14, 2012

Harftord In October

Just got back from Hartford, CT where I ran the 2012 ING Hartford Marathon. Weather forecasts during the week projected low 50's at the start. When i got up it was 30. 30!

I layered up and got out to the start without any problems. The weather warmed up pretty quick so it was never an issue. In fact it probably climbed in to the upper 40's with 100% clear skies by the end, just perfect running weather.

The course was flat and had some really beautiful 'Autumn in New England' tableaus. Around mile 7 i noticed i was slowing down and was kind of lethargic. I took off my last layer and picked up the pace. I wasn't sure what kind of distance shape I was in, but I was sick of playing it safe. So i decided to shave off about 10 seconds per mile and see what I could handle.

Turns out I felt great. The combination of weather conditions and a relatively flat course allowed me to keep that pace up. I couldn't wait until mile 16 (when I consider the real race to begin). When I hit mile 16, I was feeling really good but noticed my legs were tired. This is mostly due to the fact that I was not in real marathon conditioning (something I will adjust for Delaware in December).

The finish was just as I planned it. Started to pick it up around 24 and was just about sprinting the last mile and a half. I passed no fewer than 20 people during that time. I really wanted to catch this jackass grandstanding for the crowd as he finished, but my legs were cramping and i couldn't turn them over anymore. But mentally, I couldn't have sprinted harder.

All in all, it was my second best marathon time and had some of the prettiest New England fall foliage I"ve seen (surrounded by 19th century farm houses). I have a bunch of half marathons in the next few weeks to get me ready for Delaware. Really would love to PR there.