I ran my first marathon in 3:34:31 (Boston Marathon 2009), my second marathon in 3:24:34 ( Boston Marathon 2010), and my fifth marathon in 3:05:43 (San Francisco 2013). But it would take me five more years, and over a dozen races before I would reach my goal of running a sub three hour marathon.
My problem? I wasn’t running all 26.2 miles at a consistent pace I would start off too fast, and burn out before crossing the finish line. It wasn’t until last year that I realized I needed to run a 6:52 mile, every mile, if I ever hoped to finish a marathon in under three hours.
Cool weather and a fast course certainly helped, but my Apple Watch is really what made my sub three hour marathon possible. Unlike most fitness watches, my Apple Watch shows me my current pace and average pace together every time I look down at my wrist. Keeping me on track to run a 6:52 mile 26 times!
I almost didn’t make it. The three hour pace group sped passed me with just over a mile to go, and I let my pace slip as I became discouraged. Luckily for me they were just eager to finish the race a head of time, because when I looked down at my Apple Watch I saw I still had a minute to go on the last turn before the finish line.
I finished the race with a time of 2:59:50. or just ten seconds under goal. I can now say I am sub three hour marathoner until next year, when I do it again if only to prove it was not a fluke.