Next weekend, Ron Fleming and I are driving to Cloudersport, PA to run the God's Country Marathon. Not sure how we ended up choosing this one . . . but Dave Lavely told me he had run it and had hoped to return this year but "issues" developed and he opted not to. Dave told me 1) there was a big hill around mile 16 or so, 2) it was a tough marathon.
I did check the course and the elevation charts and noticed it appeared the course went up hill from the start and the hill at mile 16 got pretty steep. But I didn't study this very closely before I signed up. But yesterday I looked at the chart and got concerned. There was a lot of real elevation change. The elevation scale was not small.
Not long ago I saw a really neat comparison of marathon course elevations. Anthony Corriveau (aka AC) (see Running Down) figured out how to put two charts together and get them to the same scale for a really fair comparison visually. So I asked Anthony how to do it. Being a nice guy, he prepared a comparison between the Umstead Trail Marathon (which I considered fairly "hilly" and hard) to God's Country Marathon . . . that's Umstead Marathon on the bottom.
Now you can see why I'm concerned! At least the last 5 miles or so are down hill! Normally, my marathon plan is to walk the uphills and run the flats and downhills.
I need a new plan.
6 days ago