Friday, May 21, 2010

Pocono Mountains Run for the Red Marathon: Likes and Dislikes

I've been asked several time over the past week what I thought about the race. Here are some likes and dislikes about the race in case anyone reading is considering running it in the future.

Likes:
  • The course - out of the 4 marathons I've run this one was the most scenic. Running through the mountains offered some beautiful vistas that I tried to take in while chasing a new marathon PR. Many of the homes I saw were beautifully landscaping surrounded by woods.
  • The size - at 666 finishers this was by far the smallest marathon I've run. The small size allowed me to settle into my pace right away and hold it most of the race. Positioning at the aid stations was never a problem. If I wanted to walk through a water stop, I could without having a hoard of runners bump into me. I had no problems seeing my cheering squad 3 times on the course.
  • The volunteers - There were plenty of volunteers on the course. Everyone was so nice and thanked us for running their race. 
  • Lack of split clocks on the course - Other than the finish the only clock I saw was at the half way point. Most races have clocks at least every 5k. I kind of liked not having so many clocks on the course. I was able run by how I felt rather than having to math in my head to determine if I was on pace.
Dislikes
  • The size - this one goes both ways. The small size also translates into small crowds. The crowds did get bigger in Stroudsburg but there were many stretches in the rural parts of the race where there were no spectators.   
  • The aid stations - While there was Gatorade and water at every aid station, the cups only filled about a quarter of the way. At the beginning, I didn't notice but as the race progressed I started to notice I wasn't taking in enough fluid. I had to take 2 or 3 cups to make sure I got enough fluid.
All in all, I really enjoyed this race. The course was tough, but if you race it smart, you can put up a good time. Approximately 26% of the runners qualified for Boston. If you're looking for a race with small town charm and beautiful scenery, definitely check out this race. 

1 comment:

jsrawat said...

Thank you Ansky. Your blog has helped me prepare for the Poconos marathon on May 20th 2012 in a big way. Happy running.
Jitendra