Last year was super fun at the Utah Valley Marathon as it was the host of the 2012 Marathon Maniacs Reunion. In the midst of organizing the event, by the time race day actually came, I was exhausted and didn't run well at all. In fact, for a fairly fast course, I never really run well here. I was hoping for that to change this year.
Fellow Marathon Maniac and Chief Running Officer at Runner's World Magazine, Bart Yasso and I at the expo!
This year was promised to be warmer than in year's past and I was struggling with some foot issues. My goal this year was just to make it to the finish without hobbling or dropping dead of heat stroke.
Me, Marci, Galen, Sue and Teota at the start.
The one thing I love about the Utah Valley Marathon is the 6:00am start (start early, finish early and beat the heat). The one thing I hate about the Utah Valley Marathon is the 6:00am start (only because this means a 2:00am wake up call for me in order to get the 4:00am bus to the start).
My fellow Maniacs, Galen, Marci and Teota met in the Harmon's parking lot in Draper at 2:45am to carpool down to Provo. I was excited to see Teota running her first full marathon since her injury in January! Welcome back Teota!!
Once we got to the start we were all a little put back at how warm it was. It is usually freezing at the start, but it was quite comfortable. That only meant it was going to be a scorcher once the sun came up!
We had a few less Maniacs than last year at the start!
Since 1-800 Contacts sponsored me to run, I ran in their colors! Here I am with Roger Gibson, who works in the Marketing department with me! Thanks 1-800 Contacts!
Marci, Teota and I trying to get one last photo in before we crossed the timing mats!
The weather was perfect for most of the race. There was no wind like last year. I ran most of the race with fellow Utah Maniac Mike Akagi!
For those of you that have never run the Utah Valley Marathon, it is a must! It has some of the most beautiful scenery around.
There was only one glitch to the race this year. There was not a single port-a-potty between the start and the half and between the half and the finish. Now, working and speaking with Race Director Hyrum Oaks over the years, I know his commitment to the comfort and safety to the runners is top priority. I knew right away, that this was not the fault of the race and I was right. The company responsible for placing the p-o-p's dropped the ball. While it was unfortunate, it was a mistake. People who are vowing never to come back because of it, will just cutting of their nose to spite their face. It is a great event!
One thing that changed this year (for the better), was that we were running on the opposite side of the road. This allowed some lovely shade, but once we got out of the canyon at around mile 21-22 (I think), it started getting hot and there were only tiny amounts of shade.
Mike and I hung strong to the finish and I actually felt great! While my time was not all the speedy, it was faster than I had ever run that course before. A course PR!!
A few Maniacs at the finish!
Me and another co-worker, Jeff Edwards at the finish! Jeff finished his first Marathon and I am already working on him to join the Maniacs! Hee Hee!
After four years of running the Utah Valley Marathon, I still love it! See you next year!