Marathons: Paul #60, Leah #50, State #41 : ORRRC Marathon 2015
12th April 2015, Xenia, Ohio, USA
Finish Time = 3:46:33
Leah: 2nd Place Age Group
Xenia Ohio, a town 35 minutes from Dayton. I had never heard of it but we needed a marathon in Ohio, it fitted perfectly into our schedule and it sounded like a good event. It was on the smaller scale with around 300 marathoners, just how we like it, and the entry fee was probably the cheapest we’ve ever paid ($40!).
Packet pickup the day before was easy, but the same parking area was full by the time we got to the start on race morning. However there are a lot of nearby places to park including a large parking lot near some stores.
We lined up at the start and after the national anthem was sung we set off. The weather was nice, low 40s rising to 60s later. We start off running through residential streets along with the half-marathoners. At around 6 miles they turned off to run back toward the start and the marathoners kept going straight.
We soon found ourselves running through the peaceful farmlands of Ohio, besides large corn fields, farms with all sorts of animals grazing, including cows, geese, goats, horses, shetland ponies, donkeys and even llamas.
There were also birds of prey gliding gracefully over the corn fields right above us, watching closely for mice and other prey. Probably an area you wouldn’t want to collapse and show weakness in.
It was perfect, no crushing of thousands of people, no fights to get to the cups at aid stations and plenty of fresh air, along with some farm smells. The course was mostly flat and although a lot of it was on roads, they were quiet roads in a quiet place, we barely saw any cars.
We were following part of the Ohio to Erie trail and after reaching half-way we turned around to run back to the start, although it used some different paths that ran parallel. So an out and back but only using part of the same route.
We were running well and chatting.. this is our “downtime” remember! Although by the time we got to mile 20 we were both ready to want to stop. I could feel my calf muscles, only partly repaired from our last 4 marathons over 4 weeks, tearing apart again and becoming sore.
We kept our pace consistent over the last few miles, we knew we were easily on course for the sub 4, so we didn’t push or sprint towards the end. We crossed the line in 3:46 which won Leah 2nd place in her age group. She was only 2 minutes behind the woman in 1st.
After waiting for the awards and Leah collecting her award cup, we went back to the hotel for a shower and finished the celebrations at the airport with beer and pizzas.
I’m genuinely amazed that the Ohio River Road Runners Club can put on such a quality event for so little entry fee. Most races cost a minimum of twice and often three times what this one did. On top of that this one had:
– Free pasta dinner the night before
– Plenty of portable toilets at the start and on the course
– Technical running t-shirts for everyone
– Prizes for overalls and age groups, including cash prizes for 1st place in each
– Hot and cold food for runners at the end along with coolers full of sodas and waters
– DJ at the finish line
– Medals designed for that year (not reused ones from other years or generic medals). My only gripe is that the medal was the same for half-marathoners and marathoners
It’s amazing they manage to put all this on when other events provide maybe half of these items for double the cost. If you’re looking for a well organized, friendly and enjoyable event in Ohio this is a great choice.
Elevation Graph from my running watch:
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Great race report- I’m planning on running the ORRRC Marathon next spring and your review helped me make my decision. Good job on a fine race- well done! BTW- where did you get that neon green Mizuno singlet? I’m a huge Mizuno guy- Love it!
Thanks for taking the time to send us a note Phil! We love to hear feedback like that and I’m glad the report helped you to decide to run it next year, that’s exactly the sort of thing we were hoping for when putting together the write-ups. I actually bought the singlet from a dedicated Mizuno store while in Singapore. Perhaps a little far to travel just for Mizuno gear though?!