Blog Master G

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HMRRC Winter Marathon Relay 2010

Sunday, February 21st, 2010 · 6 Comments


After (hopefully) motivating others to run via my photo in today’s Saratogian, it was time to run my third race of 2010. So this morning I headed to Albany to join my two teammates, Olivier and Rick, to run the 24th annual Hudson Mohawk Road Runners Club 3-person Winter Marathon Relay.

9.2-mile leg course elevation of HMRCC Winter Marathon Relay

Before this morning, I hadn’t run more than 8 miles since my last marathon in October, but I was feeling strong going into the race and was excited to run a longer distance than the 4-milers I’ve been running as of late. I’d also  previously run just one race of similar distance (Stockadeathon 15k in 2008), and recall really liking the distance — not an all-out sprint like a 5k but a solid clip, faster than a half-marathon… in theory, anyway.


Though I’ve been staying in pretty good shape this winter (running ~20 miles per week and swimming once or twice a week), I’m apparently not in quite as good shape as I was in September when running my last half-marathon (7:01/mile average pace).


Then again, the Saratoga Palio didn’t whip me with 20 MPH winds like the marathon relay did today. Going into the race, I was shooting for what I thought was a fairly conservative 1:04. The course was a bit hillier than I expected, and the winds really took their toll, so I came in just shy of my goal, crossing the 9.2-mile mark in 1:05:09 (7:02 average pace).


Despite the wind, it was a solid race and I was happy with my performance, given my current conditioning and the wind. The course itself wasn’t the most interesting: Just a couple of laps around the SUNY Albany campus and the State Office Park — a mind-numbing route were I ever to run the Winter Marathon solo (I can’t see why I ever would).

There’s not much else to report about the race itself except that I maintained a fairly steady pace (Mile 1 and Mile 8 being the fastest — 6:51 and 6:49; Mile 4 being the slowest — 7:18), drafted off other runners as much as possible (darn wind!), and ate one GU around Mile 5. It was a fun day out and nice to mix up the racing as part of a team.


Coming off an injury, Rick logged a solid 5.7-mile middle leg (7:15 average pace) before Olivier ran us home with a kick-ass performance to round out the 26.2 miles with his 11.3-mile leg (6:59 average pace).

As a team in the combined under 120 (years old) division, we would have easily qualified for the Boston Marathon (too bad they don’t accept relay times!), clocking in a respectable 3:05:39 (7:05 average pace for the team). I left before results were posted, so not sure yet how we fared, but I’m pretty sure we didn’t win. Update: We placed 12th overall of 59 teams (and 5th in our 3M 120- division, which means teams of all men whose total age is 120 or less).


Congrats to all runners! And thanks for cheering us on and taking pictures, Estelle!

Gabe’s mile splits (view Garmin data):

Split Time Avg Speed Max Speed Avg HR Max HR
1 0:06:51 6:51 5:30 154 163
2 0:07:04 7:04 6:22 157 163
3 0:07:14 7:14 6:20 160 166
4 0:07:18 7:18 6:30 162 170
5 0:07:06 7:06 6:32 162 167
6 0:06:59 6:59 6:27 163 168
7 0:07:09 7:09 6:38 169 172
8 0:06:49 6:49 6:21 169 173
9 0:06:59 6:59 5:50 174 178
9.2 0:01:36 6:34 5:38 179 180
Summary 1:05:09 7:02 5:30 164 180

Tags: running

6 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Mary Franchini // Feb 21, 2010 at 7:37 pm

    Congrats to all the runners. You are ATHLETES THAT CONQUERED THE GREAT NOR’EST!!! Windy 30 degrees cold BRRRRRR. I know ya warm up after the 1st mile or so but c’mon…one runner asked me if I could turn down the wind a bit as I finally volunteered for the club. It was grueling I was sure. The sun did shine but Mother Nature but you athletes to another challenge. I am prud that I could help help with traffic flow and cheer the runners. Mental attitude is such a major part to the 1st timer and for the seasoned runners. The runners thanke dme so many times I felt a need to volunteer more….but I normally ru in all the HMRRC. I am happy to know I am apart of a great friendly club…ya done good runners…GOLD MEDALS FOR EVERYONE!! Se ya at the next race. Nice nice JOB!!!!

  • 2 Blog Master G // Feb 21, 2010 at 8:24 pm

    Thanks very much for supporting us on the course today, Mary! Even if I don’t always have the breath to thank volunteers, I try to say thanks with a wave… so hopefully I gave you a wave today. 🙂

  • 3 A Marathoner // Feb 24, 2010 at 2:18 pm

    You did awesome. 7:02 pace for not really banging distance since your last marathon is great. You guys did a terrific job!

  • 4 Blog Master G // Feb 25, 2010 at 1:29 pm

    Thanks, Elgin! Appreciate it.

  • 5 nyflygirl // Apr 29, 2010 at 10:28 pm

    I couldn’t resist commenting on this-I went to SUNY Albany and seeing the tower and the res halls in those pictures brings back memories!! (looks like that was either Indian or Dutch Quad…if I remember correctly.) Great run, and great blog too 🙂

  • 6 Blog Master G // May 4, 2010 at 3:03 pm

    nyflygirl- right on! Thanks for stopping by my blog, and thanks for the kind words!

    Your blog looks great, too – always nice to connect with other runner-bloggers. 🙂