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Big Cottonwood Marathon

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Spanish Fork,UT,USA

Member Since:

Jan 15, 2007



Goal Type:

Age Division Winner

Running Accomplishments:

Lifetime PRs:

Marathon: 3:07:59 2013 Big Cottonwood Marathon 

1/2 Marathon: 1:24:30 2008 St. George Painters

10K: 38:39 2008 SLCTC

5K: 18:44 2009 Nestle Art City Days 

55-59 AD PRs:

1/2 Marathon:???




Short-Term Running Goals:

2023 plans: 

  • Work on core strength
  • Lose 5 lbs
  • Overcome lingering injuries
  • Have fun!


Long-Term Running Goals:

Consistently place in the top 5 of my age division as long as my body will allow it.

Beat Terry Bean at any distance at least one time before I depart this earth.

Take care of mind and body so I can be in it for the long haul. Don't do STUPID THINGS!

Run until I'm 99 with Kim by my side and remember that EVERY RUN IS A GREAT RUN!

Peace of mind by striving to live like this



I've been married to the lovely Kimberly for 36 years. We have 5 great kids and 5 great grandkids.

Click to donate
to Ukraine's Armed Forces
Miles:This week: 0.00 Month: 7.00 Year: 1254.65
Saucony Fastwitch #1 Lifetime Miles: 65.50
Asics Gel-Nimbus23 #3 Lifetime Miles: 708.70
Asics Gel-Nimbus23 #4 Lifetime Miles: 348.25
Asics Gel-Nimbus23 #5 Lifetime Miles: 12.00
Race: Big Cottonwood Marathon (26.2 Miles) 03:07:59, Place overall: 52, Place in age division: 7
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Finally I was able to get that marathon PR that has evaded me for quite a few years. But I certainly didn't do it the easy way. With all the Payson Canyon running we've been doing I decided to ignore the Garmin and just run by feel. I guess I felt like running really fast (for me) on the downhill and trashing my legs, then being mostly in agony the last 8 miles and just holding on for dear life to secure the PR.

Looking at some of my splits on the downhill (you come out of the canyon around mile 17 or 18) seem WAY too fast and not so smart. My legs are pounded to shreds I really hurt BAD right now. But I figured the last 8 miles that are mostly flat or uphill and in the heat (especially since race started 30 minutes late due to some bad bus driving getting high centered 3 miles below the start!), and are going to be hard no matter what so I decided to make hay while the getting was good, which today means that I clocked in at the 1/2 way point around 1:25. Yikes! Almost a HM PR.

Mile-by-mile breakdown and gory details follow.....

1 - 6:13 very steep first mile to start the race, maybe the steepest of them all, I tried to go slower but it seemed safer and more fluid to just try and go with the flow and not fight the steepness. Pretty much followed this plan on all the downhill miles.

2 - 6:39 some flatter stuff on this mile. Feeling dandy and enjoying the scenery. I was surprised with the high elevation (over 9000 ft these first couple of miles) that the breathing didn't feel more labored. I think all those Payson Canyon runs really helped.

3 - 6:23 don't remember much about these next few miles, pretty steep and just enjoying the ride and ignoring my watch!

4 - 6:17

5 - 6:13

6 - 6:11

7 - 6:22

8 - 7:14 some flat and minor uphill during the next few miles

9 - 6:36

10 - 7:04

11 - 6:40

12 - 6:2

13 - 6:04 Yikes! I guess this mile was pretty steep)

14 - 6:44

15 - 6:13

16 - 6:47 getting near the mouth of the canyon and not quite so steep anymore

17 - 6:50 starting to get the feeling like crash-and-burn could occur shortly

18 - 7:10 out of the canyon now, still net downhill but getting warm and a lot more flat/uphill portions, starting to hate life around this point and all the other negative thoughts that come when you hit the wall. The most negative thought was that "I STILL HAVE TO RUN 8 STINKIN' MILES -UGH!!!!" - this might be the censored version of what I was thinking :)

19 - 7:18 stinky but 7:18 is still respectable at this point

20 - 7:50 really starting to die, also some uphill on this mile that I don't appreciate. Thought of 10K still to go is almost unbearable, start having thoughts of how I'll explain my quitting the race even though my time is still under 2:20 overall at this point

21 - 8:16 bleh...

22 - 8:30 more bleh... but I seem to snap out of my funk enough to where I realize I can really tank bad and still PR even with mostly walking the whole rest of the way. This actually gives me enough positive vibes that I'm able to speed up a bit towards the end of the mile.

23 - 8:02 had some downhill on this mile finally but legs are so thrashed I can't really capitalize. Also I'm starting to linger a bit long at the water stops walking while I drink.



26 - 9:06 no more hill -mostly flat but I'm pretty much done and finding all kinds of reasons to not go any faster since I know that barring passing out or cramping up (which could easily of happened at this point) I will get my PR 

.27 2:16 (8:23) The longest '.2' I recall in a marathon. It didn't help that the mile 26 sign was placed too early so we had to actually run .4 miles or so to the finish from where the sign was. I didn't love it. But I DID love finally getting done and getting the PR. Now I just hope the massive pains and soreness in my legs doesn't linger for too long and that I haven't injured myself!

Asics DSTrainer18 #2 Miles: 26.20
From Kam on Sat, Sep 14, 2013 at 14:16:47 from

Quad masher, for sure. Congrats on the Big PR.

From Toby on Sat, Sep 14, 2013 at 16:01:58 from

Way to go Tom! I was at mile 17 and 23 with the bright pink signs! It was really starting to get hot at mile 23. Everyone I talked to had PR's today....must be a good course!! Big congrats on a great day!

From Steve Hooper on Sat, Sep 14, 2013 at 21:22:00 from

Good chatting with you today Tom!! Congrats on your new PR!

From TBean on Sat, Sep 14, 2013 at 21:49:18 from

Holy Freakin Moly. You crushed the first 17 miles of that marathon. Glad to see you left that 3:10 guy in the dust and got a big PR!!

Hope the legs recover quickly.

From Tom on Sun, Sep 15, 2013 at 08:34:03 from

Thanks everyone!

Terry the unfortunate thing is that between the half way point and the finish I let the 2:55, 3:00, and 3:05 guy pass me by. But not the 3:10!

From Clay on Mon, Sep 16, 2013 at 14:43:56 from

Really nice job Tom! Congrats on the PR too, so happy for you!

From Paul Thomas on Mon, Sep 16, 2013 at 16:27:03 from

I've been running, but not keeping up the blog very well. I'm off work today and decided to spend some time catching up on logging my runs. I was thrilled to discover this race report and your PR. I'm very happy for you.

I think most of my PR runs were "dash at the beginning and hold on through the pain" runs as well. I know how hard it is. It seems your mental toughness matched your physical excellence. Congratulations!

From JimF on Sun, Sep 29, 2013 at 14:34:18 from

Congratulations on a great race and huge PR! You have been putting in that work and it is certainly paying off.

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