On Sunday morning I ran the Buffalo Marathon for the ninth time. I finished the course is 4:20:41, missing my PR from last year by just two minutes.

Coming just shy of my time from last year was a disappointment, but this is still my second quickest marathon ever, and overall a fairly good morning of running.

I was a bit late getting to the start line, and consequently took an extra six minutes to begin the race. This ruined my plan of staying with the 4:10 pace group as they had presumably started four minutes ahead of me. Still I had a decent idea of how quick I wanted to run, and felt pretty good the first few miles.

I caught up to the 4:20 pace group near mile four and was conflicted if I actually wanted to catch the faster pace group. The plan was to run with them, but closing the deficit within the first half probably also would imply running a far quicker opening half than I had planned. While I never did quite catch up with them, I think I did run the first half very close to 2 hours, which is a quicker start than I had planned.

The weather for the race was a bit warmer than I would have liked, but was tempered by an overcast sky that made it a good day to run. The sun didn’t really come out until the final hour of the race, by which point I was on a more shaded part of the course.

By mile 15 I was starting to feel tired, and was worried that my time was going to be a bit slow, however by mile 19 my optimism had turned around and I was thinking I might be able to finish alright with holding onto slightly better final 10k than last year. In the end I split the difference, never slowing to a walk but also seeing my average speed come way down in the race’s final few miles.

This is the first marathon where I ran from start to finish, and while I am proud of that I just wish I had been three minutes quicker.

My next race is a low key trail race on tuesday night that I am not quite going to be recovered in time for.