In this race report, Austin M. reviews his experience of the marathon near Seattle, the Amica Seattle Marathon. Read on for his tips for managing the hills!
Runner: Austin M
Location: Seattle, WA
Strava Activity Link: https://www.strava.com/activities/1291967088
3 Bests – What aspects of the Amica Seattle Marathon did you like the most?
- Frequency/Spacing of water and Gatorade – I tend to drink a lot of water, but hate carrying my own. The race had a really good amount of stations I was able to run through and grab water.
- Course – The course was a pretty cool mix of downtown Seattle streets, local parks, and waterfront views. They removed the section across I-90 which I’ve run a few times for workouts, and I’m glad we didn’t run that route, I think it’s an improvement for the course.
- Size/Competition – This was only my 2nd attempt at the Marathon distance, but I was in the midst of other runners the entire race. I ran with a couple different groups throughout the race and never felt like I was running against my own ghost.
Not so much – What aspects of the Seattle Marathon didn’t do it for you?
Weather – It actually wasn’t too bad this year, considering it was late November in the PNW. Start was really cold rain, then I was staring into the sun and blue skies, and ended with some rough wind. I’d prefer one form of weather though whole race, but Seattle weather is always weird.
Out and Back Sections – There were two points in the race where the course runs out for a mile or two and then turns around onto the same road/trail. Mixed into a Marathon I wasn’t super keen on the 180 degree turns and the mental aspect of running back the course I just conquered.
Weird factor – What’s the weirdest thing about the Seattle Marathon?
Weather – A little weird on race day, sort of got a taste of all the seasons.
Hills – There are a couple hills at the end that people forget about, the course doesn’t end on a hill, but the last half mile is a saddle.
Highlights of your race – What did you do well and enjoy about your race in particular?
I think the whole race was a highlight, I raced well and felt like all aspects of my race and the event went very smoothly. My own management of effort went well, I had to tell myself to keep my legs reigned in until the last 10k, but I’m glad I did.
Fueling was also very smooth, outside of choking on a cup of water in the early miles. I ate a few less Gus than I brought, and I felt pretty hydrated all race.
No bathroom breaks!
Lessons Learned – Share your pro-tips on the Seattle Marathon to help the next runner or yourself on the next time around
With the hilly sections sort of book-end on this course (in the beginning and at the end) I think you can open up the engine more in the middle. If you manage effort well you’re going to pass a lot of people in the last 10k, so the section to push yourself is on the flat in the middle.
Most important course specific knowledge to know about the Seattle Marathon?
The last 10k is probably the most tough, mentally and physically, now that the I-90 section has been taken out. The out-and-back through the arboretum and the sweeping turns through Interlaken take some grit to race through, be ready for that.
Organized and well run – Did it feel like a well-oiled machine or were they flying by the seat of their pants?
Yes, although it takes some planning to get in and out of the expo and packet pick up on Friday/Saturday, since the venue is smack downtown.
Logistics – Anything special regarding getting to/from the race, hotels around the course, registration…?
Nope, seems like a typical city marathon.
Weather and typical race conditions
Expect a mix of everything! I always race lighter than I train, and I think that worked well here. A long sleeve technical shirt, a hat, shorts with enough pockets for Gu, and good socks were my kit.
Spectators – Is this a friendly course for your friends?
Definitely! I saw my family twice with the loop around Seward park, and Team Run Runners along the way.
How’s the swag?
The Overall Score – How many stars do you give the Seattle Marathon and do you recommend that others run it?