Sep 29

New Marathon World Record!

This weekend, Dennis Kimetto set a world record at the Berlin Marathon. He finished in 2:02:57. That is about 4:41 mile average pace for 26.2 miles. Seriously. Think about that for a moment. He took over 26 seconds off Kipsang’s previous world record, which is huge for the marathon record.

The new world record has brought on debate as to whether we will see a sub-2 hour marathon in the future. Many believe it is a still a long ways off. I think we may see it in a decade. The record will be broken again. Even the current record holder agrees: “I can break this record again,” Kimetto said.

If youВ understandВ the mental aspect of this sport, you know elites will now adjust their goals on this new world record time. As science and technology continue to advance, athlete performance will improve. Nonetheless, 2:57 is a lot of time to drop at that level. It will be exciting to see it happen one day.

I don’t think non-runners are able to grasp how incredibly fast these elites run. I would be ecstatic to get my marathon time in the lower 3 hour range, but to be in the lower 2 hour range? Wow. В It is amazing and difficult to fathom that kind of speed. The majority ofВ runners wish they could run a single 4:41 mile let alone 26.2 in a row.

 

Sep 24

A Call for Guest Saturday Marathon Previews, Reviews and Race Reports!

Would you like to share your experience about a Saturday marathon that you have run? (Of course you would, you just ran 26.2 freaking miles and the world needs to know about it!)

We’ve been so pleased with the growth of SaturdayMarathons.com over the last year. Now it’s time to take the next step in becoming the one-stop destination for allВ your Saturday marathon informationВ and begin providing race previews, reviews and your own race reports from SaturdayВ races from all over the country!В We’re just two Marathon Maniacs living in Nevada (Steve) and Oregon (RJ) and our current calendar has more than 300 Saturday marathons — we need your help!

This is a great option for marathon runners that don’t want to go through the hassle of setting up their own blog (or if you have a blog but get frustrated by the same sevenВ family members being the only ones to read all of yourВ epicВ reportsВ like RJ was). You can put information out there to help other marathoners choose a race. You can share the race report with your friends easily. We are happy to publish it on our page and promote it on Facebook (if you wish — we’re approaching 2,000 likes). You can inspire people! We are also in contact with dozens of race directors who look for and welcome honest feedback from theirВ paying customers. Your honest and detailed experiences are gold to them.

What we are looking for:

  • A thorough review of various aspects of the race such as logistics, support, course, swag, etc. Please go into detail. Don’t worry about it being too long. We will edit it down if necessary.
  • Please include photos. Everyone loves lots of pics! рџ™‚ Let’s see those medals!
  • Be objective. Don’t trash a marathon simply because you had a bad race or didn’t meet your goal. What did the marathon do well? What could it have done better? Go into to details about why.
  • Have fun with it!

We don’t want a simple one paragraph review like you will see on other race websites. If you’re going toВ train for,В pay for and travel to a race, you want and need more than that.

We are glad to help you with your submission. We may ask follow-up questions, edit grammar (I’ll do my best since I’m not a pro at this) and arrange it on the website.

(Obviously, we reserve the right to reject inappropriate submissions. Please keep it family friendly.В Please also don’t get your feelings hurt if we edit the submission. рџ™‚ )

Race reports/reviews/questions can be e-mailed to steve@saturdaymarathons.com.

Sep 01

Back to the Pocatello Marathon

I ran the Pocatello marathon the first time in 2013. I posted my recap here. I went back to run the Pocatello marathon again in 2014. I wasn’t really intending to run it again but my schedule aligned so that I happened to be there on marathon weekend. Of course, I couldn’t pass that up.

A few thoughts in addition to what I posted previously:

Pocatello has a running store now, Pocatello Running Co

The marathon is still run incredibly well. The logistics are fantastic. The race swag is fantastic (a nice Adidas bag, cool tech tee [in a new color], a 5lb bag of potatoes [seriously] and more!)

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I think it speaks volumes that I can return on consecutive years and still expect a high quality event both times. Also, there were quite a few fellow marathon maniacs at the race. Marathon maniacs run a lot of marathons. It shows how good this marathon is that the maniacs keep coming back in good numbers, especially considering Pocatello isn’t as easy to travel to as other marathons (you likely have to fly into the Salt Lake City or the Idaho Falls airports and drive to Pocatello).

The weather was really nice this year. It was cool in the morning, not too warm at the end.

The small hill at mile 21 didn’t seem so bad this year. Maybe because I knew it was there or maybe because I had recently done the Tahoe Rim Trail 50 miler.

The announcers at the finish line were really nice and were doing giveaways. They hooked me up with a nice water bottle and gave my kids cowbells. You always need more cowbell [Christopher Walken voice].

How was my race? I missed my PR by 50 seconds, lol. I would have been upset except I knew that I gave this race all I had. So… no regrets.

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Aug 26

Review of Hal Koerner’s Field Guide to Ultrarunning

“The feeling usually hits me hard a little past the halfway point of a race. You are so exposed at that point, physically and mentally. There is so much behind you, yet so much ahead. It is daunting. And thrilling. An ultra forces you to put yourself out there, and it is that all-or-nothing feeling that I love. When you finally cross the finish line, the feeling of having triumphed over not just the many physical hurdles, but also the even more formidable ones of uncertainty and doubt, is like none other. I still shake my head in wonder and think, Wow, I can’t believe I just did that. Now that’s a good day.”

― Hal Koerner, Hal Koerner’s Field Guide to Ultrarunning

I was skeptical about this book because I wasn’t sure what it could offer that was not already covered in Byron Powell’s “Relentless Forward Progress,” which is often accepted as the must read guide to ultrarunning. As I read, it quickly became apparent that this book makes a great companion (or stand alone, even) guide to ultrarunning.

Hal Koerner’s ultrarunning credentials are hard to beat. He has notable wins at the Western States Endurance Run (2), Hardrock Hundred, Angeles Crest (2), just to name a few.

The writing style of the book is very straight forward and engaging. It’s an easy read. He also tells information in way of sharing what works for him. It may not work for everyone and he doesn’t claim that his way is the only way. I really love the expert tips and firsthand experience he offers. He also shares some of his mistakes, making you realize he’s human, rather than some perfect ultrarunning elite.

It’s a great guide to help your prepare for an ultra, including detailed training plans. There are plans for 50k, 50m-100k, and 100m distances. In addition to training, there is information on nutrition/hydration, gear, do’s and do nots on race day, and much more.

In addition to ultras, there’s great information for running in general (especially trail running).

I recommend this book if you are interested in running an ultra or you are already an ultrarunner. This book brought some things to my attention that I can work on and also some tips to implement in future training sessions and race days.

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Aug 18

Tips for Running on Vacation

On a recent vacation, I was trying to remain on a running program. Here are a few tips I used (or ignored to my own peril):

Google about running in the area you are visiting

You can search for good routes to run and places to stay away from. You may even find some local running groups to meet up with.В This can be a great opportunity to explore the area and do some sightseeing on foot while you are visiting. This can also be an opportunity to train on new terrain and/or in a new climate.

Another good source of information is local running shops.

On my recent trip, a search led me to someone advising not to run on the local beach. Nonetheless, I had visions in my head of gloriously running barefoot on the beach like in the movies. In reality, the sand was so loose that it was difficult to decently run on it. Furthermore, I ended up with blisters on four of my toes! It went something like this:

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Run on the treadmill

I loathe the treadmill. However, sometimes this is your only option. No matter how sparse the fitness center is at a hotel or on a cruise ship, they usually at least have a treadmill. There may also be a gym nearby. This should help to at least jump on and maintain a base level of running fitness.

Adjust your running plan

If you are concerned about having time to run on your trip, you can always plan long runs before and after your trip to get those miles in.

Adjust your training for your location

Anticipate the running conditions. Don’t stress if you are from cooler climate and you are having a hard time running in heat. Your pace will be slower. Make sure you pack gear according to conditions. The same goes if you are visiting somewhere much colder and/or more/less humid.

I am from a dry climate and felt like I was choking on the humidity on a vacation run.

If you are from sea level, running at altitude could affect you. Turn it an opportunity to experience training at altitude to see how your body responds. Be safe and prepare for the possibility of negative effects.

If you are a flatlander, running at a location with lots of climbing can be a great opportunity to get some hill work in.

Cross-Train

You may have some great physical activities planned on your trip like swimming, hiking, cycling, etc. These can help assuage the regret of missing a training run.

Have Fun!

Don’t think about your training too much. Enjoy your vacation! I have read taking a week off may only cause you to lose about 10% of your fitness level, but your body could benefit greatly from additional rest and healing.

 

Also, good luck staying on a healthy running diet while on vacation 😉

Any additional tips you have about running on vacation?