Super Marathon

Super Marathon

After a disappointing marathon experience at Boston this April, I was determined to run a quick marathon this year, so I signed up for the Super Fast Marathon on June 17th 2023. I previously did this race in June of 2019 and ran a 2:45:33. I hoped to run a little more consistent and under control in 2023 and break 2:40. 

I toed the line at 7AM and was fortunate to have perfect weather conditions with cloudy skies, a slight mist and temperatures in the mid 40s. The race starts from Hyak on the Iron Horse trail and heads east for 2.5 miles along Keechelus Lake. I made it to the turn around and then dodged traffic back to the start finish line. I hit the first 5 miles in 28:48. From there I continued onto the Snoqualmie Tunnel. I turned on my headlamp, choked on a cup of water and tried to avoid stepping in puddles as I ran into the abyss. I reached the other side at 7.8 miles in 46:21. Unfortunately, my watch overestimated the distance and therefore, it seemed like I was running just a little faster all morning. However, the persistent mile markers kept me honest.

The opening miles felt fairly controlled and I was looking forward to the descending portion of the course. The first five miles along the lake and tunnel only waivered about 120 feet (2570-2490 feet in elevation). After exiting the tunnel I dropped about 1600 feet to the finish. Generally the only thing on my mind was pace and which side of the hump in the middle of the trail to run on. Because I was wearing the vapor fly shoes, my feet and ankles were a little more unstable on the rocks and I was trying to avoid any small injuries.
The trail was mostly socked in by fog, but I did get the occasional view of the Cascades to the north. Additionally, there was always another old railroad trestle to traverse and these were often flanked by a waterfall to the south.

I ran through the half marathon mark (according to my watch) in 1:17:32; which theoretically was on pace for a 2:35:00, however, on the course I went through the half marathon mark in more like 1:18:30 (2:37:00 pace). As the race progressed my focus waivered and I caved to the pain slightly, clicking of a 2:21:48 second half marathon. I crossed the line in a time of 2:40:18, which was good enough for the win and a 5 minute PR on the Super race course. However, I was ultimately hoping to run an overall personal best and break 2:38:00. Still I was happy with my effort and the weather could not be more perfect for a quality marathon. Thank you to the Run Super race directors and all the volunteers for an well executed marathon.

I also managed to make it out to another Bill Roe All Comers Track Meet where I competed in the 1 mile and 5000m. As a stark contrast to the Super Marathon the All Comers meet was quite hot and sunny (with temperatures in the mid 70s). Just 11 days after the Super Marathon, on June 28th, I hit the track to get beat by a bunch of fast high school and college kids. I ran the mile in 5:00.47, just barely missing the sub 5 minute barrier to open up the meet. Then about an hour later, after the sun had gone down I toed the line from the 200 meter side of the track for the 5000m. I managed to finish 5th place in 16:11 despite starting quite a ways off the front. The 5000m was certainly one of my fastest in quite a few years and I felt great about my fairly even splitting on the track.

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