Number 8

The goal I set back in December to run a marathon a month in 2014 got a little closer to reality today.  My THPL journey took me to Wellsboro PA where I completed my 8th marathon of 2014 at the second annual PA Grand Canyon Marathon.  With a canyon rim start we were treated to a visually interesting location for a marathon.  Before we could fully appreciate the view the gun fired and we were off and heading to the canyon floor running down hill for miles on end.  Knowing the course was an out-and-back made those downhill miles a bit challenging.  Ever foot we ran downhill meant a foot uphill on the way back.   And so it was to be….uphills and downhills for all of the 26.2 miles. The fire road added a bit of extra challenge with a heavy dose of loose gravel.  Throw in a good 80+ degree summer day and a PB was not in the cards for any of the 300 or so runners that set out today to cross the finish line and get the proverbial finishers medal.   I did work the mental challenge by telling myself over and over again that this race is good training for the Leadville trail 100 I am running in three weeks.  Especially relevant was the last three miles that were all up hill to the finish.  I would say that today was a suitable THPL test of body and mind.  Of the 300 runners I came in 30th.  An ok finish, with a time of 3:52 hours.   Bottom line is today I got a good taste of what the hills can do to your time and how hard up and down big hills can be…..yes indeed

 Loving life having completed eight marathons in 2014 

Ciao

Joe