Niagara Falls International Marathon

I was really pretty excited about this Marathon. The expo was awesome – 2nd best that I had been too. I bought a sweet Niagara Falls Marathon Jacket, Arm warmers, and a head band. Thank god I got the arm warmers or I would have been out there in just a tank top and gloves…

It was very cold before the start of the race – I hid in the Albright Knox Art Gallery until about 9:30 am. Then went to the bag drop buses and my bus had a LONG winding line….. the only bus with a line of course, I had already taken all my layers off so I was freezing, but then this guy hands me one of those foil blankets and says “you will need this”. What a guy – saved the day! I was thankful. By the time I got rid of my bag there was only 10 minutes before the start. They played the Canadian National Anthem and the American… which was cool.

I started the race with zero expectations, only plan was to take it easy and no matter how good I felt I would hold myself back. So I did, I stuck to 8:30 miles…. felt so easy, I figured I would just keep that pace for the entire Marathon… If I did it would be a PR. It felt like that would be a easy thing to do…. I even used a Clif gel early, somewhere between mile 3 and 5…. and another around mile 10. But then I started realizing Im not even half way done yet… and I’m starting to feel tired? My legs felt good … but my energy just wasn’t there. Then the cold and wind really started to get to me.

Here’s a map of the race – you’ll see where it all starts going down hill…


I didn’t think I could have a worse Marathon than Disney World. Disney I had HORRIBLE stomach issues, even a porta potty break…. but still finished right at 4 hours. I felt fine yesterday, no issues at all. It just wasn’t my day to run a Marathon. I started losing it after the first half… seeing my pace get slower and slower. As I got slower I got colder… and I got REALLY tired of being cold. I wanted to be done… I saw an ambulance driving by, and thought about asking for a ride. But I still wanted that medal…

At about mile 20 I really gave up. I broke my no walking rule. I figured I could walk the last 6 miles and still finish in the time limit. But then I was freezing, so I would try to make myself run for half a mile. I would end up running for like .2 miles then walk again. I struggled with running until about mile 23 where I came between these 2 guys. One of them started talking to me (we were all walking), but it was just the distraction I needed. I asked the guy on my left how many Marathons he’s done… this was his 210th!! Holy cow. We saw a photographer in the distance and decided we should be running for the photos… so the 3 of us ran together for a good mile. I told him about my first marathon (Chicago) and how I haven’t been able to get close to that time since. He said it was beginners luck. He also hated me once I told him my time.

Those guys saved the day.  They eventually fell back and I kept running till the finish. The first part of the marathon was fun because I felt good, but that ended fast. I was not enjoying the race at all, until the last 3 miles… which is a first. There’s something about running on one road for 18 miles that I just don’t like… we were also running along the river that entire time and maybe that didn’t help the wind factor.

Here’s my results:

I was 465th overall out of 1035
20th in age group out of 65
147th female out of 482
Time: 4:15:01

I haven’t seen any pictures from the race yet – but I will post those soon. Glad this race is over – and this concludes marathons for me for a WHILE! (except for a trail marathon 😉 )

P.S. They put a lot of work into this Marathon and did an awesome job! If I had done well I probably would have loved everything about it. Very comparable to Chicago. I would recommend it to anyone.


12 responses

  1. You pushed through- the wind on that course can be absolutely brutal, this much I have experienced! I’m glad you got your hard earned medal and had some chatting with other runners along the way. Chicago may have been ‘beginners luck’ for you, or so you think but you are a great runner and will get your time where you want it to be. Now it’s time to focus on recovery (and ice cream!) and hit the trails hard next year!

  2. I was there running the half (finished just seconds before the first place female marathon finisher, so that’ll tell you MY pace, yet it was a PR for me) and we noticed a significant drop in temperature after the first 2 hours. When we finished, I couldn’t get into a cab fast enough – everything started cramping because of the cold when I stopped.
    Weather-wise, it was a miserable weekend!
    Fun event, though.

    • Congrats on your PR! Yeah I was expecting to get warmer as the race went on… nope! I had a long walk to a Tim Hortons and sat in there with my mom and Aunt for a while… I could not warm up, couldn’t stop shivering. It was a fun event despite not having a great race. Thank god the race wasn’t Saturday… I don’t know if I could have handled that much wind/cold/rain.

  3. Pingback: A few Race Reports | Imarunnerandsocanyou

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