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Marathon de Paris - Run

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Paris Marathon
Total Time = 5h 26m 38s
Overall Rank = 48629/50709
Age Group = M2F (?)
Age Group Rank = 1684/1787
Event warmup:

As with any marathon, this started long before race day. My friend Maria casually mentioned wanting to do a marathon before her 60th birthday, and I think I unintentionally convinced her that the Paris Marathon made good sense. After some back and forth about logistics, we both signed up. This was on my "want to do" list for a long time, so I was pleased!

I decided to hire a coach. I knew that I would struggle with motivation during the winter months plus there was a 6 hour time limit, so I didn't have a lot of wiggle room. It was SO WORTH THE MONEY. I completed all but maybe 2 runs as assigned and the coach was extremely cautious about the build. I enjoyed the walk/run approach and told her my main goal was to finish with pride.

We arrived in Paris on early Thursday morning and got settled into the apartment. We did packet pickup on Friday and otherwise just tried not to do too much. There had been rain in the forecast and it was a light mist on Sunday morning, but by the time we left the apartment it was cool and dry. Yahoo!

Our apartment was roughly equidistant between the start and finish, about a mile. We intended to take the bus to the start, but of course the routes were shut down. We took the metro a few stops, which was nice, and hit the portapotties right by the Arch de Triomphe. How strange. We were SUPER early (my fault as usual) and hung out in the metro station to stay warm because it was windy. We get into the corral around 10:15 and before we knew it, we were walking to the start. They did a crawling start, letting off small groups at a time, so even though our corral start was 10:50, we crossed the line a little after 11.
  • 5h 26m 36s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 12m 28s  min/mile

I set up my watch for run 7/walk 3 intervals. I did run through my first walking interval because it just felt right and the pace was being managed very well. The second walk interval came so quickly, it seemed, and then I keep on schedule until the very end.

KM 0-10:
This was the best section for crowds and enthusiasm. Some cobblestone, but not crazy. Going around the Bastille was electric, since the returning runners in early heats overlapped with our course. TONs of fans and a great band.
Lots of crowds until we reached the Bois de Boulogne. This segment was SO boring. Nice enough scenery and a few crowds, but not the Paris I wanted to see. Around the half marathon I did find a bathroom. I am really glad I brought a bit of toilet paper, because these potties had had a long day. Yikes. I kept up with eating a honey stinger waffle every 4th intervals on my walk, plus sampling from the race food (bananas, pound cake YUM, gingerbread YUCK) and refilling my bottle. I carried one collapsible bottle in my vest which was perfect, by the way.
KM 22-27ish:
After leaving the park we ran through a bit more boring, urban stretch. I was happy for the variety of shops and music along the way. On the whole course there were many drum bands, which I love! Really kept the mood high. There was also a DJ in this stretch and I tried to dance/move a bit, just to keep the vibe going. The runners were quite stretched out at this point, being at the tail end and with wider streets.
KM 27ish-35:
We made it back to the Seine, with more crowds and narrower roads. I never lacked for anything to look at, and the food/water/potties were spaced perfectly. The aid station volunteers were great about encouragement and I heard my name 100 times. There was a tunnel by the Tuileries that is filled with murals and we could hear the drum band echoing the whole half mile or so, end to end. IT WAS THE BEST!
KM 35-40:
We’re in another park and it’s a little boring again. Here is where the zombie apocalypse started. Weirdly I felt pretty great! It was less comfortable for my legs/feet to walk, so I actually looked forward to run breaks. LOL. But I kept with the walking to manage my effort and take in calories. There was a guy from Taiwan trying to encourage people to keep running, so I talked to him for a minute. Since I was doing run/walk, I was running faster than most nearby – which was (sorry) pretty encouraging and kept my spirits high. I could do without these park segments, though, so boring! Also this park had a few hills.
KM 40-end:
We’re back to the city – woohoo! More hills, both up and down. I started ignoring my intervals and only walked on uphill. My last 2 miles were fast! I ended up with almost an even split, which is HUGE PROGRESS for me! In Berlin I ran 2:30 for the first half, and 3:15 for the second half. Terrible. This was 2:40 for the first half, 2:46 for the second. Considering the last 10k or so were pretty much uphill, this is amazing to me. Still can’t get over it.
What would you do differently?:

This was darn near perfect. I think my coach would have preferred an extra month on the front end, but if you change one thing it could tip everything in the wrong direction. I will take this as a gift and enjoy it without regrets.
Post race
Warm down:

They didn't have any foils left, so we walked a mile+ back to the apartment. We did stop for hot dogs and champagne en route. Love big city races! LOL.

Splits Split time Total time Pace/km Pace/mile
KM5 0:36:20 0:36:20 07:15 /km 11:40 /m
KM10 0:37:52 1:14:12 07:34 /km 12:10 /m
KM15 0:37:53 1:52:05 07:34 /km 12:10 /m
KM20 0:40:07 2:32:12 08:01 /km 12:54 /m
KM21 0:08:48 2:41:00 08:00 /km 12:52 /m
KM25 0:30:06 3:11:06 07:43 /km 12:25 /m
ASICS 0:08:19 3:19:25 07:33 /km 12:09 /m
KM30 0:31:05 3:50:30 07:58 /km 12:49 /m
KM35 0:39:51 4:30:21 07:58 /km 12:49 /m
KM40 0:40:14 5:10:35 08:02 /km 12:55 /m
FINISH 0:16:07 5:26:42 07:20 /km 11:48 /m

Event comments:


Last updated: 2023-04-05 12:00 AM
05:26:36 | 26.2 miles | 12m 28s  min/mile
Age Group: 1684/1787
Overall: 48629/50709
Performance: Good
Course: Pretty flat tour of central Paris, including a lot of sights (Opera, Bastille, Eiffel Tower, etc.), through both the Bois de Bologne and the Bois de Vincennes, and finishing on Avenue Foch toward (but not through) the Arch de Triomphe.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Good race?
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Below average
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

2023-04-06 11:30 AM

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, Minnesota
Subject: Marathon de Paris

2023-04-06 1:30 PM
in reply to: #5284962

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Dayton, Minnesota
Subject: RE: Marathon de Paris

What an awesome race!!! Congratulations!

2023-04-08 7:56 AM
in reply to: #5284962

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Atlanta, Georgia
Bronze member
Subject: RE: Marathon de Paris
Congrats on your day! ..'these potties had had a long day.' - funny!

Even splits and feeling good at the end..well done.
2023-04-12 1:17 PM
in reply to: alltom1

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Middle River, Maryland
Bronze member
Subject: RE: Marathon de Paris

Congratulations!  Isn't it great when a training and race plan actually work???  Well done.

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