Mesa Falls Marathon 2016 (Marathon 18, State 13- Idaho)

Sorry for the delay!  I traveled around after the Mesa Falls Marathon (post on that travel to come!) and wasn’t able to do a write up right away.  But here it is!

Race:  20th Annual Mesa Falls Marathon

Location: Finish/packet pickup was in Ashton, Idaho, in eastern Idaho about 2 -2.5 hrs from the Jackson Hole, WY airport.  Note for sea-levelers: Ashton is 5,259 feet above sea level (and note, a week of easy running at a similar altitude is not sufficient acclimation).

Time of Year: End of August, on a Saturday. 

Weather:  Can vary, but for me it was wonderful — started in the high 40s at 6:30 am and ended in the low 70s, I think.  Temperature felt good the whole time running but a little cold standing at the start.

Number of Runners: 146

Other Races:  Half marathon, 10K, 5K, fun run.

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Planning My 2016 Race Schedule

First:  CONGRATS to everyone is who running/ran the Marine Corps Marathon today!  What a great race!  Hopefully it isn’t too wet out there today.  I saw folks picking up packets earlier this weekend and I got super jealous, but this morning I am cozied up in my home and sort of happy about it.

And now to the topic at hand: When possible, I don’t like to sign up for races too too far in advance, just in case something comes up and my plans need to change.  At the same time, I also don’t cut it so close that the race might fill up, and my plans are thwarted, or so close that I have the option of quitting the whole idea when I get to my 17-mile training run.  But even when I haven’t hit the “Register” button, I still need to map things out well in advance.  In fact, I have a nice little Google spreadsheet that I use to keep track of my races and states, completed and uncompleted.  Here is a snapshot:

Screen Shot 2015-10-24 at 9.19.16 PM

As you may be able to see, I have the columns sortable by state and month, so I can say “hmmm… let’s go to Indiana!  What’s there?” (No, really, that’s a question.  Any answers?)  Or I can say “February is looking open… let me choose a race then.”  I also include the city of the race because some of these states are damn big, and I might be excited to go to one corner but not the other.  And when the city doesn’t have an airport, but I’ll need to fly there, I include a reference to the appropriate airport.  Finally, I include a note if there is a lottery or qualification requirement for the race.  It doesn’t make sense to plan a whole marathon cycle around the New York City Marathon, especially if you forget to register for the lottery.

So now that 2015 is coming to a close, it is time to refer to my spreadsheet and really start thinking about 2016 and what races/states I’ll be tackling.

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