The Full Monte -9/16/2019-Huntsville Utah Marathon.
The Full Monte is a very well organized marathon which also includes a half marathon, a 10k, a 5k and a 1 mile kids run! It reminds me of the St George Marathon and the Nestle a 5K in regards to it's family friendly and runner supportive community! The marathon race course is a gentle downhill grade from start to finish without any surprises.
At the starting line I met up with Smooth, Teena and we prepared for the run down the hill. I had the privileged of helping to train a good friend on mine (Troy) to run his very first marathon. At the starting line tent I introduced Troy to Smooth who agreed to run with Troy during the marathon. Smooth has been on a whirlwind tour of a bunch of marathon and has the St George marathon to do in about 17 days and Teena too! But not me.
Just before the race we were run out of the heated tent and moved towards the starting lines. If I have a concern about the marathon it's the starting line chip readers were not the width of the small road, just about half of it and you had cones funneling you through them to the mats. It appeared that many runners missed getting their chips read.
Prior to the race I had decided that I wanted to run a 3:45:00 at the Full Monte. When we all got out of the tent I noticed that The Full Monte had "Pacers". I searched around and could not find a 3:45 pacer and soon learned that my choices of a Pacer were either the 3:40 pacer or the 3:55 pacer. I chose the 3:40 pacer and pace group even though I thought that the 3:40 pace was a bit to fast for me. Oh ya, this is a very fast course, as much as 15 minutes fast!
Bang, the race started with a bum announcing system that could hardly be heard, everybody that wasn't very close to the starter just got pulled into the start when the group of about 196 marathon runners started to move down the course. So the race was on at the appointed time of 8:am. The temperature at about 35* at the altitude of about 8750' and there was a light wind blowing over the starting area. But as usual it only took a few minutes of running until you warm up. I jumped into the 3:40 pace group of about 12 runners plus the Pacer. If there was a steeper grade on the course it was the first 3 or four miles but it was still very easy to control your pace and not go out too fast and brutalize your legs.
I stayed with the pace group until about 20 mile where I started to lose gas which was more than likely because of going out with the faster pace group. But I had to because there wasn't a 3:45 or 3:50 pace group. At the 22 mile mark you take a side street of the main course which had been Highway 39 for about 3 miles until you returned to Highway 39 at about the 25 mile mark. Now you could hear the sounds of the finish line but weren't able to see it because you still had several twists and turns in the course to negotiate before you entered the finish chute, step over the finish line and received your Finisher Medal. The goodies at the end were very good and they had Cremies, chocolate milk, sugar cookies, bananas and a bunch of other good stuff for recovery fuel. All of this took place in the spacious Huntsville town park.
On a personal note, I really enjoyed this marathon and would recommend it to anyone. I managed to run a BQ time of 3:58:30 at a 9:06 per mile pace and took 1st place in my old man Age Group (M 64-69)against 8 other runners including me.
PS : I signed up for the 2018 Boston Marathon last night when I got home from the Full Monte!