Tuesday, March 15, 2005


Tuesdays I run with my team in St. Paul after work. So I can’t write about today’s run yet. Instead I thought I’d write about a guy I “caught” in a white lie the other day. I was running with one of my new teammates and we were talking about races we’ve done and are planning to do this year. He’s a triathlete, but since I’m training for marathon we eventually got around to his only marathon attempt last fall at the Twin Cities marathon. Now this is like our 2nd time running together, so we don’t really know how fast one another is. He proceeds to tell me how he was on 3 hour pace through 20 miles before cramping up and finishing in just over 3:30. That seems reasonable, I’m sure it’s happened a million times.

I admit I was a little curious, so I went to the website to check out his story. Well the first split I see in a 1:32:30 half. Hmmm, it’s “close” – sort of – but it’s not really 3 hour pace. Maybe he was able to pick it up before crashing. “Luckily” the Twin Cities marathon also tracks another data point later in the race, usually 30k or 20 miles. So I look and I see 2:18 and I’m thinking, “Wow, he did pick up the pace.” 2:18 thru 20 miles is 6:54 pace, very close to the 6:52 pace needed for a 3 hour marathon. Then I look closer and see that it’s a 30k split, not a 20 mile split. I guess he didn’t pick it up after all.

He did actually finish in 3:31:25, like he said, but there’s no way he was “on 3 hour pace” at all, let alone for 20 miles. Maybe I over-reacted by “checking-up” on this guy, I don’t know. Maybe because breaking 3 hours took me so long to accomplish that I take it personally when people throw that time out.

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