Categorized | Marathons, Primary

The Unpredictable Weather – Marathon Weekend

Posted on 30 March 2011

How many times have you showed up for a running race and the weather forecast highlighted at the expo states, “Clouds with sun and a 50% chance of rain”.  What the heck is that supposed to tell you, sounds like anything could happen.   Just listen the next time your at a pre-race dinner, expo to the “buzz” and conversations about the weather.

Ok, everyone don’t get too concerned about the weather which will add additional stress especially if it’s your first marathon!   It’s amazing how fixated we are in life with the weather and of course race day.   It may be a factor that might slow you down to set a PR if it’s very hot but the key is to just eliminate it from your subconscious.   Yes, your shoes and socks might get soaked – just prepare your feet for the weather with anti-friction creams.For the Pittsburgh Marathon – expect every kind of potential weather and plan for it (especially if your traveling to Pittsburgh).   However, keep in mind with the Expo and local Dicks Sporting Goods you can get anything imaginable if you forgot a specific running item.

I can remember over 20 years ago running the race and looking in the distance at our corporate buildings in the city and it was snowing.   It was raining and windy where I was on the course and snowing like crazy in the city and it was hard to believe.    It’s very rare to snow in May, the latest recorded accumulation of snow was a 1/2 inch May 25, 1925.  The average temperatures for race weekend are a high of 71 and a low of 48 degrees.  Humidity is normally a factor in Pittsburgh many times in May it will be in the 70% range.    Other years it’s been very hot – the highest recorded temperature in May was 91 degrees on May 31, 2006.  Plan on rain, seems like every year there are showers in the spring and on race day, just make sure to lube your feet and area’s where you can get “friction burns”.

The weather can definitely be unpredictable during the race, don’t let it bother you. Focus on your race goals, smile, thank a volunteer, and have fun!

One Response to “The Unpredictable Weather – Marathon Weekend”

  1. Bill O'Connell says:

    I am trying to track down the year of that marathon when the race started off in the snow and everyone was finishing wrapped in space blankets. Can you help?

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