Friday, January 16, 2009

Marathon Recommendations

I'm looking to run my first marathon in May after I finish with classes. Right now I am looking at Pittsburgh (where my brother lives) or Frederick on May 3rd. I'm also thinking about Eugene, which is also on May 3rd. Some buddies of mine from undergraduate organize and direct the Eugene marathon. The big hurdle there is expense-I will be going to a bachelor party in March in Vegas and a wedding in Green Bay in May so I don't know how much extra fundage I will have for another cross country plane ticket plus hotel.

I have three goals for this marathon. Main Goal: Qualify for Boston in 2010. I will be 35 then, so that means running 3:15. Secondary goal: Run 3:10. Ultimate goal: Run 3:00.

I'm wondering if anyone has any thoughts or experiences with the above marathons, or could recommend another one that I should run.




KLIM said...

I would do Frederick.

There is something to be said for running a marathon in your backyard. It's very convenient. Traveling for races can be tough (I personally think) - eating out, sleeping in a different bed etc...especially for your first marathon.

Pittsburg, I think, is hilly and Frederick I've gathered is a "fair" course. Though, I do not have experience racing either of these courses.

Unknown said...

I have run Pittsburgh 4 times. The major uphill portion occurs in the first half of the race, but it's the long downhill close to the end that really beats up your legs. One of those races, I ran the last few miles between the downhill and the finish at about 11-min/mile pace.

That notwithstanding, it's a good race and I will be there as part of a marathon relay team this year (since it runs half a block from my parents' house).

Melissa said...

I've run Frederick twice and had good experiences both times. I only have 2 other courses to compare it to, but I agree that it's "fair." It's probably a little bit tougher than Marine Corps but not hellacious. It is a smaller field, but there should be plenty of people in the 3:10-3:15 range. On the organization side, I'd say it's very well run: there's plenty of fuel on the course, plenty of parking, the expo wasn't overly crowded, etc. Plus, there's the backyard factor Jake mentioned. You get to sleep in your own bed and eat your own food.

You'll find some more reviews here:

Dane said...

With 88 marathons under my belt and two Fredericks I would lean towards Frederick. While I myself will possibly be running Pittsburgh for personal reasons, I can attest that Frederick does many of the little things right.

As mentioned above, the less travel the better when going for time goals. Good luck to you either way.