Sunday, August 22, 2010

"The Valley that Changed the World"

It might seem like a rather presumptuous tagline for a lightly populated woodlands between Pittsburgh and Erie, Pa - but in a way - it's correct (at least more than Baltimore's - "The City that Reads"). In 1859 Edwin Drake was the first person to use a salt drilling technique to get to oil just outside the town of Titusville, PA. The result was the first oil rush ever.

147 years later Dane Rauschenberg decided to run 52 marathons in 52 weeks. He wasn't able to find a marathon Christmas weekend - so he convinced 21 other people to run 105.5 laps of a track in his hometown of Titusville, PA. The Drake Well Marathon was born.

Three and a half years after Dane's run - I was looking for a marathon in late August as part of my preparation for the Chicago marathon. To be honest Drake Well probably wouldn't have been high on my list except that it was the only marathon around this time within driving distance of Winchester.

Kendra and I made the best of it - turning it into one of our weekend "boondoggles". We sampled the food of Indiana, PA - tried to find the perfect groundhog related schmaltz in Pauxatauney, PA - and went into the woods to explore the ultimately disappointing ghost town of Pithole.

As for the marathon - it was the smallest I've participated in - less than 100 people finished. But the last 16 miles were out and back on a bike trail. Pretty much everybody cheered each other on - there was a real feeling of camaraderie which made it fun. I ended up running a little faster than planned - but I don't feel like I pushed myself too hard and next week is a down week. Even more than the marathon I feel good about running 120 miles last week. It's the most I've ever run and it might be the most I ever run again. Running only 85 miles next week will feel like a walk in the park - now I just need to be more consistent on my tempo runs and I might have a decent shot at sub-2:30 at Chicago.

Last Week
Monday morning: 9 miles
Monday evening: 10.5 miles
Tuesday: 10.5 miles
Wednesday morning: 4 miles
Wednesday evening: 16.5 miles 16.5 miles 4 mi (21:53) 2 mi easy 2 mi (11:04) 2 min rest ~1 mi T pace
Thursday: 14 miles
Friday morning: 7 miles
Friday evening: 10.5 miles
Saturday: 12 miles
Sunday: 26.2 miles
Total: 120.2 miles

Next Week
Monday: 6.5 miles
Tuesday: 10.5 miles
Wednesday morning: 4 miles
Wednesday evening: 14 miles 4X2 mi @ T pace 2 min rest
Thursday: 13.5 miles
Friday: 7 miles
Saturday: 19 miles 15 mi marathon pace
Sunday: 10.5 miles
Total: 85 miles


THE KRIS said...
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THE KRIS said...

"...much like the city that reads"?

uncalled for ben, uncalled for.