Most have probably already seen this, but I ended up winning the Pocono Marathon on Sunday. The results have me as running 2:22:19, but my watch and the clock both said 2:22:10. It’s a marathon though…9 seconds is not a big deal.
For those of you that don’t know, I grew up in the Poconos. My parents still live 45 minutes away from where the marathon finished. It was nice to have a small cheering section for me at the race. Amanda and the boys as well as my mother, father, brother, and sister were all there to watch the race.
The race organizers had to make a completely new course as a bridge was being repaired on the original course. I am glad they were able to come up with a new course and not have to cancel the event, but the new course was extremely difficult! Here is the profile. It’s hard to put into words just how difficult the course ended up being. I wish I had taken pictures of both the downhills and uphills throughout the course. Some of the downhills were so steep that when combined with the wet roads it made me have to be careful not to fall. I know….enough complaining, it was a race and everyone else had to run in the same conditions.
After 1 mile into the race myself and Bryan Morseman found ourselves separated from everyone else. Bryan and I chatted for a few miles before I started to pull away around 4 miles. At that point I thought I was going to be running the rest of the race by myself. Bryan had won the Delaware Marathon the week before and said he would be happy with second. The course started to drop off a cliff at around 6 miles. The hills were so steep I didn’t know what to do…both holding back and running fast caused too much pounding. I ran at what I thought was right in the middle. That ended up being 5:20/mile (in hindsight it probably should have been a little faster). Bryan ended up catching back up with me at around 8 miles…he was really moving on the downhills. We ran together (chatting again) for a mile or two and then I pulled ahead and ran the rest of the race all by myself. The rest of the race was pretty uneventful. I enjoyed the views and the cheering of the fans throughout the course. It was great having people come out of their houses throughout the race course to support the runners.
I want to thank race director Bob Werts, Kate Booth, and everyone else affiliated the the Pocono Marathon-Run for the Red for having me up to their race! This is definitely an event I would come back for in the future. Maybe next time I can run on the original course…
I also want to thank my wife, Amanda for always supporting me and traveling with me to races. It’s wonderful to have my family there when crossing the finish line!
Some media coverage: