Famous Idaho Potato Marathon

Hello from warm and sunny Boise, ID. We all even have sunburns to prove it!

After a day full of traveling yesterday we made it safely into Boise by early afternoon and headed down to pick up packets.


I never really felt too nervous yesterday. I even went to bed feeling excited for today. Ready for the challenge that awaited me at 7am on Saturday morning.

I set my alarm for 445 and was trying to fall asleep by 9 ish. I had to get up at 10 and go to the bathroom. I guess at least I was hydrated.

Since every one else didn’t need to be ready until 8ish, I was on my own for the pre-race morning photo.


Dad and I were leaving the hotel at 515 and I was on the bus headed to the start.

It was a breezy 50* at the start and I’m glad I had a few extra layers on.

We were delayed getting off because we were waiting for the people in line at the bathrooms. What race does that? Apparently the Famous Idaho Potato does.

Mile 1: 9:10 Mile 2: 8:25 Mile 3: 8:29 Mile 4: 8:10

I saw a good family friend at mile 1. I was so excited to see him! I wasn’t expecting to see anyone until ~mile 6ish.


I couldn’t believe how fast this first part of the race flew by. It is probably because I knew I wasn’t ending at 13.1 so I wasn’t counting down the miles as soon.

Mile 5: 8:11 Mile 6: 8:08 Mile 7: 8:13 Mile 8: 8:22

I knew running with all the half marathoners was a bad idea. I felt great keeping up with every one. Only to have it eat my lunch later. At mile 6, I knew to look for a twitter friend and I’m so glad he yelled at me and cheered me on. Thanks Andrew! Just the pep I needed.

This race was downhill, flat and fast. It was on a trail system in Boise for the most part. A lot of the trail was heavily shaded. It would have been pretty perfect weather for the half marathon.

Mile 9: 8:28 Mile 10: 8:27 Mile 11: 8:45

I knew that I would get to see my parents and sister around mile 10. So I just kept trying to make it to that point. I still looked (and felt) good at this point.

Mile 11 ish I decided that I needed to taste the pavement and took a digger. Skinned up my palm and knee. But popped right back up, tried to get my adrenaline under control and continue on. I have no idea what I did. I don’t remember tripping over anything. Just simply fell.

Mile 12: 8:53 Mile 13: 9:40

I found a porta potty at 12.5 ish and decided to take advantage of it.

The half marathoners turn right before mile 13 and head in to the finish line. It wasn’t a very good feeling to watch them turn and listen to the party going on and still have a half to go. But I dug deep and headed on.

The amount of racers thinned out pretty good too at this point. It was nice for a little silence to think in my own mind instead of worrying about if someone was passing when I was trying to pass.

I could feel the guys with me on and off all morning, but when it turned into the second half of the course I could really feel their presence.

I got to see Aron at this point. I was pretty excited to show him my battle wounds.


Mile 14: 9:07 Mile 15: 9:09 Mile 16: 9:39

I was still chugging along and was feeling pretty good. Until about mile 20sih. I hit that wall every marathoner warns you about. It was a dog fight to find the inner strength. I had to call on the guys to give me some energy. I had started walking through aid stations about mile 14. Also started taking water and gatorade about mile 16. That, I should have started sooner, because I started to get some serious cramps a little later on.

My pace had slowly started to drop, and I know it was partly because I tried racing those damn half marathoners. I was also dealing with warmer temperatures than I have trained long runs in. Plus the second half didn’t have as great of cover in the shade as it did in the first half.

Mile 17: 9:34 Mile 18: 9:33 Mile 19: 9:38

When I hit mile 17 I kind felt a jolt of energy and thought 9 miles. I can do 9 more miles. I was still happy with my times, even though a little slower than hoped. The turn around point was after 19. This is where I slowly started to hit the wall.

Mile 20: 10:07 Mile 21: 10:51 Mile 22: 10:38

I was just trying to keep a fairly steady pace.

Then I started to cramp in the fronts of my calves and one quad. The only thing that helped was walking, so that’s what I did.

Mile 23: 12:25 Mile 24: 12:06

Right here was the toughest part mentally for me. The cramps in my legs were getting the best of me. Even though I continued to take water and gatorade, but I think I wasn’t far enough ahead of it.

Then I suddenly caught a second wind.

Mile 25: 10:10

I knew were I was. I knew that I was almost to the home stretch. I knew my family would be there.

I finally got to cross over that same bridge that the half marathoners got to 2 hours ago.



Usually I am the one waiting patiently at the finish line for everyone. But today, everyone was waiting for me.

Dad ran with me from the corner into the finish line. Mom joined in at the final turn for home.


Some how, Dad even talked me into a “happy dance” at mile 26.1. OUCH!

I ran into the finishers chute looking at the clock showing 4:07.

Goal #1 going into this race was to finish. Accomplished.

Goal #2 was to go sub 4. That goal will have to wait.

I have a new PR for the marathon.


This is the face of a rookie marathoner. It really does hurt that bad.


Official time: 4:07:11
9th out of 23 F25-29
39th out of 115 females
108th out of 260 for the marathon

I learned a lot. I grew a lot as a runner. I came from someone 4 years ago who thought she could never run a marathon to being a 4:07 marathoner.

I’ve got some work to do before my next full in August, but you bet your ass I’ll be ready for it. I’m going sub 4!

I know I couldn’t have done it without carrying those guys with me. When I started to cramp I wanted to give up, but they were right there telling me to get on my horse and finish this thing strong. That’s exactly what I did.

Of course, what would be the Famous Idaho Potato Marathon without a picture with the Famous Potato?



Posted on May 18, 2014, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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