Friday, October 17, 2014

Post Chicago Marathon Thoughts

I’ve had a few days now to reflect on the 2014 edition of the Chicago Marathon.  It was my 2nd time running it and my 2nd marathon ever.  Initially I was a little disappointed in having a less than optimal day, but as I reflect there is a lot of positive to be taken from the experience.

  • I finished over 36 minutes faster than my first marathon ON A BAD DAY! That’s a testament to what kind of fitness I’ve worked myself into this summer
  • I was able to keep to a training schedule for the full 18 weeks and ran every single day.
  • I logged over 200 more miles that I did training for the first marathon.
  •  My training averaged 40 miles per week for the first 16 weeks of the plan. Before this year I had only run 40+ miles in a week once.
  • I never felt like I hit a wall during the race, perhaps just a big slope. I faded a bit from 30K to 40k, but not as dramatically as last year.
  • I surged from 40k to the finish. My pace picked up to the same levels that I was at early in the race
  • From the top of Mount Roosevelt into the finish line I was able to run at a sub 7 min/mile pace. That’s 5K speed for me at the end of a grueling run.
  • My half splits were 1:50:01 and 1:59:50. In the past on bad days I would have been round 2 hours or more, so to have back to back halfs like this is fantastic.
  • I have 2 more chances to redeem myself. I feel like a mad genius being able to take a 2nd crack at the marathon so soon.  Most would just call me mad. I have my pick of either going for broke in NYC or Las Vegas. NYC will likely been a wait and see how I feel run especially since I’m in the 3rd wave and will likely be dealing with crowds. It wouldn’t be the worst thing to use it as a training run so that I can kick some butt in Vegas along with Mo.

It may be hard at times, but don’t let a bad race get you down. Think of it as a learning experience. It took me a couple days to digest what happened and turn the negative thoughts around, but now I’m ready to go out and tackle the next challenge.


  1. Congrats again on the massive PR despite having an off day. I hear you about looking forward to turning the negative thoughts around and tackling the next challenge. I am itching to get back out there, but am forcing myself to take 7 days off from running to get back to zero. My dreams are of PRs in other distances right now! If Vegas is flatter, I would use NYC as a training run, but that's just me. Vegas could be hot. :)

    1. Vegas is definitely flatter. Course support can be quite sparse at times so you definitely have to be mentally tough. The nice thing about Vegas is that it is at night, in the desert. It shouldn't be hot, especially since day time highs are upper 60s, lower 70s that time of year.

    2. By "less support" do you mean less people cheering? If that's the case then New York will blow Vegas out of the water. I have never in my life been part of a race that wild with fan support. It is incredible. Otherwise if you can cheer yourself on, go with Vegas. :)

  2. Great insights- and awesome job!