Talk about a mouthful for a title. This post is a couple days overdue so maybe it’s appropriate.
I’ve had a few days to let my thoughts simmer and mature. In that time I’ve decided against writing a separate post with my evolving thoughts on the NYC marathon. That issue has been discussed beyond necessary by people more capable than I. (I’ll save my own opinions for after I run NYC.)
First, I want to recap the entire training cycle.
When I first registered for this marathon, it was going to be my second. I thought a 4:30 goal was ambitious but doable.
Then I entered a winter of increasing mileage and decreasing pace. A hunger for higher mileage led to registering and running the New River Marathon. To my immense surprise I shaved 25 minutes off my time. I now had a PR only 5 minutes outside of what I once thought was my reach goal.
After New River I got ambitious. I wanted to attack Savannah training with a solid, high-mileage base and then chose an aggressive training plan.
God had other plans. He blessed me with an unexplained back issue (likely a muscle strain) that set me back and forced me to reevaluate. I wondered at the time if I would even make it to Savannah.
I restarted my training, chose a more appropriate training plan and adjusted my goals. Actually, I didn’t make goals besides the goal of becoming a smarter runner. Turns out, that’s a pretty good goal to make.
This training cycle wasn’t perfect but I wouldn’t exchange it for the perfect one for anything. I learned so much that will help me continue to run marathons for years to come.
Now I’d like to evaluate the race itself.
I promise this won’t be long. It’s been pretty wordy so far.
You get what you pay for with a Rock N Roll race. (Although I snagged a great deal so I got more than what I paid for. ;)) It’s big. It’s very commercial. It guarantees pretty solid spectator support.
While I love running big races like this, I disliked the commercial aspect. Everything is branded and aimed towards getting you to spend more money. I would recommend running a Rock n Roll race once for the experience and only if you can snag a good deal.
The course itself was fantastic. After all the negative feedback last year about the multiple highway miles, Competitor Group worked hard to redesign the course to make it more appealing. Mission accomplished! While I wouldn’t have care that much about more highway miles (I was in it for the flatness ;)), I loved the beauty of the course and the addition of more miles of spectator support.
All the other logistical aspects of the race were well handed, at least what I saw. Parking was no trouble. The corral releases were well timed. The finish line food and gear check were well arranged and staffed with competent volunteers.
If you’re trying to choose a Rock N Roll race to run next year, I recommend Savannah.
Speaking of Savannah, I have to give a shout out to the city for welcoming 17,000 crazy runners and giving us a warm, southern welcome.