2016 REVEL Canyon City Marathon
Published: Nov. 15, 2016, 2:52 p.m.
Describe your race day.
I think the Revel Canyon City Marathon is pretty well organized, especially for a newer race, and I had a good time. Some of the things I really liked were the fast course (if you run it right), the beanie you get in the swag bag, nice charter buses rather than the school buses a lot of races use, and pictures included for the price. Some of the things I didn't like were the lack of pacers (I'm not sure what happened but It appeared that all the pacers faster than 3:25 didn't make it for some reason), expo was pretty small with very little parking, only had water at the start (no sports drink, fruit, Vaseline). While I can't give it 5 stars, I'll probably come back to run it again another time if it works out for my schedule. I hit my goal so it was a good day.
Did you PR?
I finished in 3:11 which was a 5 minute PR topping the 3:16 I ran in St. George 6 weeks prior. I qualified for Boston 2018 with enough cushion to ensure I'll actually be able to run it.
How would you describe the course?
The course very scenic and is fast IF you run it correctly. This is not a course for even or negative splits. You'll be banking some time but you don't want to be banking too much. I think too many people start out faster than they should. While this is common at most races, it requires extra attention here with the downhill being so front-loaded on this course. I think the key is running at an even effort rather than at a given pace. I focused on dialing it back at the start and running my own race rather than worrying about the people passing me at the start. This paid off as I had enough left for the hills in the back half which is how I went from 158th overall at the halfway mark to 76th overall at the finish.
Tell us about your training.
I've been using the Hansons Marathon Method this year which has led to big performance gains for me. I run 6 days/week with 1 day of intervals, 1 day of tempo and a long run with the other 3 days being easy runs. I averaged about 60 miles per week. Because I only had 6 weeks since my last marathon (not the normal recipe for success) I had to do an abbreviated training cycle with 3 weeks recovery/easy running, 2 weeks of training, then 1 week of taper while relying on the fitness base I built during training for St. George in October. I also tried to do my tempo runs on downhills but I don't have anything around me close enough to simulate the first half of this course. However, I think it did give me time to work on proper downhill technique.
What advice would you give future runners?
I think preparation is the key. In addition to adequate training, knowing the course is very beneficial as I believe you need to run it appropriately to get the best out of yourself. Be patient and run within yourself while gravity helps during the first half. Train on downhill if possible and work on technique (lean forward, don't over stride, quick and light turnover, etc.) so that you don't run with the brakes on.
What fun things did you do in the area before or after the race?
I grew up not too far from here and now live in San Diego so I'm still semi-local. Because of that I didn't really do any sight seeing or anything like that. I hit up In-N-Out Burger for a celebratory 4x4 which is my post-race tradition.