I'm retired from racing. Really.

Top of Utah marathon

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Member Since:

Feb 24, 2007



Goal Type:


Running Accomplishments:

I also maintain a blogspot running blog. Check it out. 

5k- 16:01, 1/2 marathon- 1:11:37, marathon- 2:34:16, 50k- 3:58, 100 mile- 15:19

Former World Record holder in 100 x 5k relay 

Ultra history:

8-100 mile, 1-100k, 9-50 mile, 2-40 mile, 14-50k-ish

12 wins, 5 CR's, plus four 2nd, five 3rd, 4th, 4th, 5th, 5th, 9th, 16th, 20th, 28th, 38th, and 62nd place, with 1 DNF 

Short-Term Running Goals:


None for now

Long-Term Running Goals:

Unretire at some point

Run a sub-6 hr 50 miler

Win a 100 mile ultramarathon


I have five cute kids. And I have some rockin short green racing shorts- I wear them mainly because it embarrasses my wife so much. I like ultimate frisbee, trail running, reading, and cheering for the Denver Broncos!   And I have the absolute best wife in the world.  And I used to run for the now-disbanded national Team Pearl Izumi- Ultra!

Favorite Blogs:

Miles:This week: 11.00 Month: 11.00 Year: 794.00
Fastwitch Lifetime Miles: 82.50
Trail N1 Lifetime Miles: 86.50
Road N1 Lifetime Miles: 31.00
Stinson Lifetime Miles: 541.50
Trail M2 2 Black Lifetime Miles: 418.50
Trail M2 3 Lifetime Miles: 495.60
Trail N2 2 Orange Lifetime Miles: 418.00
Road M2 3 Orange Lifetime Miles: 333.50
Road N2 Purple Lifetime Miles: 324.50
Trail M2 Lime/black Lifetime Miles: 61.00
Race: Top of Utah marathon (26.2 Miles) 02:34:16, Place overall: 6, Place in age division: 1
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesCrosstraining milesTotal Miles

Well, Marathon, you and I have had a long and tumultuous relationship together.  I first met you in 2003 at the Top of Utah, and have experienced your company about 10 times since.  Ever since our first encounter, I have known I had unfinished business with you.  I have known all along that our relationship needed to break 2:37:12 (6:00 pace), and preferably faster.  I had such high hopes at St. George last year but was crushed when you rejected me with the wind and rain.  But now, our business together if finished.  Over.  Done.  I am officially dumping you.  I can't say that I won't ever cast a sidelong glance in your direction at some point in the future, but I am moving on to my true love: trail running.  Don't come begging me to come back, because it won't work.  I am satisfied I have gained enough from our relationship and I am now content.  

My bib for this race was #10, and based on the field, I felt I would do well to place that high.  AdamRW prepared a nice pacing template that I used to check my time every 5 miles- I had 2:32:30 and 2:35 goals on it.  My "Oh crap" goal was 2:37, and my "Really Oh crap" goal was 2:39.  Slept about 4 hours last night, which is pretty good for me.  My 3 year old was up puking and dry heaving all night, but Marci was kind enough to take care of it.  Warm up was normal, with lots of bloggers hanging out at our secret bathroom.  Temperature was good, maybe 50 deg- I would have liked it a bit cooler.

Race started out at a good pace, with Paul immediately jumping to the lead and a group of 6 in pursuit, including 4 Kenyans.  I settled into 11th place by mile 1, with Ashbaker just ahead and a group of FRB-ers behind who eventually disappeared.  Splits were 5:39, 5:46, 5:44, 5:37, 5:52, 5:51, 5:56, 5:59, 5:35.  I caught Ashbaker at mile 9- he was going through a bit of a rough patch.  We ended up running together for the next 9 miles.  I was very worried at this point because my quads were complaining loudly about the pounding- this normally never happens to me, including on TOU 1/2 which was a faster pace.  I knew I was running as fast as I dared and was very concerned that I had over done it and would crash.  The tailwind wasn't as strong or long as I hoped, but it was definitely there at miles 13 and 14.  Splits were 5:20, 6:22 (mile marker off?), 5:45, 5:44.  Half marathon split was 1:15:50, which was about 2:33:30 pace based on even effort for the course.  Steve and I caught a Kenyan at mile 12 and another at 14, moving into 8th and 9th place.

We exited the canyon and started down the always enjoyable Hollow Road.  I like this part of the course, and I hate the highway portion that follows.  Splits were 5:38, 5:50, 5:51, 6:00 (worry about my quads became worse with this slow mile), 5:55.  When we hit mile 18, I got a second wind (though my legs felt the same) and pushed hard up the hill.  Ashbaker dropped behind.  The uphill was a 6:06, 6:05, then into my oft-traveled Providence with a 5:59 and 6:04.  On the long straight downhill into Providence, I could see 3 runners several minutes ahead of me but figured they were too far ahead to catch.  Marci and Bethany were by my old house at mile 21.5 to cheer, though they didn't see me coming so I had to call out to them.  My legs were screaming, but really not much worse than at mile 8, which was a good sign.  

I really pushed hard in this section and started counting down what I needed to do to break 2:35- "Ok, 26 minutes for 4.2 miles... now 19 miles for a 5k"- I was working all out for the sub-2:35 and trying to do math, which is not an easy task at this juncture of a marathon.  On the 700 S road in River Heights, it became clear that 2 runners were quickly coming back to me... and one of them was Sasha.  I have never beaten him and it gave me some extra incentive.  I was closing about 20-30 seconds per mile on these two.  Splits were 6:10 and 6:01 for 23-24.  I got my third wind and started pushing hard, knowing now that I could sustain this pace and my goals were in reach.  Somehow, my legs started feeling better.

Turned onto 300 S and could smell the blood in the water with Sasha and Eric Held, a local runner whom I have never met before.  I finally caught them on Main Street at about mile 24.5, which gave me a huge rush of adrenaline- I have never passed people at that point in a marathon.  I surged hard to make sure they didn't chase me, and ended up beating them by about 40 sec and 1 min, I believe.  Mile 25 was 5:56, and 26 was a 6:05.  I was going to finish in 6th place!!! 

I have been accused of looking grumpy and tired in my marathon finish photos, so I wasn't going to let that happen this time.  I started pumping my fist above my head with 50 yards to go and was greeted by a big roar from the crowd, especially when they announced me as the 2nd local finisher.  Final .2 in 1:12, giving me a 2:34:16 total time (5:53 pace).  5th place was 3 minutes ahead, so there was no way I could have placed higher.  Second half of the marathon was 1:18:26, meaning I only slowed down 2:36 (with even effort giving a 2 min slowdown, so really pretty even).

I was extremely pumped and excited afterwards and had loads of adrenaline.  I heard the always amazing Paul won it and ran to congratulate him.  He was followed by 2 outstanding Kenyans, then Nick McCombs, then Bryant Jensen.  Eric and Sasha were just behind me, and I really enjoyed waiting in the finish line for all my friends to finish- Sasha, Ashbaker, Adam, Cody (who out-chipped Joe Wilson even though Joe out-leaned him), everyone!  FRB women swept top 3 places, with Nan Kennard killing everyone and setting a course record.  Wow!  She definitely ran the outstanding performance of the day.

My legs are sore and the balls of my feet are very raw, but I am good other than that.  A nice massage and a soak in the nearby canal helped my legs, though I'm sure I will be slow moving tomorrow.  But I am happy and satisfied with my marathoning experience- I set a PR by more than 5 minutes today.  Now I can shift my focus to ultra trail races and see what adventures await me in that world, starting with pacing Davy at the Bear 100 next weekend.

Tangent 3 Miles: 29.00
Weight: 0.00
From Bill Mandler on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 14:43:53 from


A PR, 6th overall, and you beat Sasha in your hometown race. Your hard work has certainly paid-off. Nice job those last miles!!!

From RivertonPaul on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 14:46:14 from


From redrooster on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 15:00:38 from

that is simply incredible!! way to accomplish your goals and move on to your next level on a super high note and with momentum. great to see you on the course and at the end. you guys really inspired me today to stay with it and tackle the marathon full force now, I really appreciate it.

From Oreo on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 15:00:52 from

Awesome race. Great report too. That's some serious speed.

From Fritz on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 15:14:48 from

Nice job Jon. That's a big PR against some tough competition. Looks like you paced it very well.

From josse on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 15:15:11 from

Great job Jon! I love the opening and closing speech!! can't wait to give that one. Only I will still continue with the distance. I love when things turn out just right for someone on marathon day:)

From ChrisM on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 15:46:15 from

Well done on the race and winning your age division!

From Burt on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 15:48:41 from

What a bitter sweet report. Man you really muscled through this one. It sounds like you got your second wind or entered into the euphoric zone. Great job!

From Twinkies on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 15:54:04 from

Excellent write up. You're an inspiration. Great Job.

From Snoqualmie on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 15:58:05 from

Someone on another forum I visit asked "why do you all run marathons?!?!" The funniest answer was from an ultra runner, "Well, they are great training runs for my 100 milers."

Best wishes on your new goals and congrats on a great race!

From jtshad on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 16:12:21 from

Congratulations on the huge PR!! You ran a stellar race right where you knew you could! Thanks for the call, I was so stoked when I heard your result.

You are da man!!! Plus you have the most entertaining race reports!

From Kelli on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 16:12:42 from

HOT DOG!!! Nice race report, I loved that first paragraph, loved it! How awesome to finish on a high note and I so hope those pictures tell the story. Way to pass people at mile 24.5! You speedy people are usually spread out so much by then, it is awesome you were able to pass not one but two!!!

From allie on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 16:20:52 from

great job today. all those miles really paid off for you. huge congrats! i can't believe i missed out on the secret bathroom! such luxury.

From Superfly on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 16:52:58 from

Nice job Jon. I knew you were going to do it. Glad you could end your marathoning career with such a high... and glad that somewhere a long the line I may be in some of your marathoning memories:)

Actually hopefully you'll have fun in the trails for a few years then come back and break 2:30 at STG one of these years... you've got a sub 2:30 in ya here for sure.

Great job man!

From marci on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 16:54:32 from

way to go JOn. you rocked it.

From crockett on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 17:17:18 from

Wow Jon! What a riviting writeup. I hid your finish time from my eyes and read your amazing story...cheering you on to catch Sasha. Way to go. Incredible. Well done and a piece of very nice writing. I fully understand the feeling about chasing the marathon minutes. I look forward to running the trails with you on Friday!

From Lindsey Dunkley on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 17:18:34 from

Great job today...congrats on a huge PR!

From JD on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 17:23:58 from

Great run. Great report. Looking forward to your ultra adventures!

From Ruthio on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 17:30:08 from

Nice race Jon! I wish I'd trained with you some before the race, that way I could claim some small bit of credit for how awesomely you did today! ;) Good luck next week in your ultra-ing, crazy man.

From Cody on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 17:31:23 from

Jon is satisfied! He now has a marathon PR to be proud of. Quite the journey, wasn't it? I knew you had it in you. 6th place with that stacked of a field! Impressive. See you on the trails....

From Steve Piccolo on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 18:14:43 from

Great job, Jon! Nice way to retire from the marathon.

From Lysa on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 18:57:34 from

Holy crap!! good job!

From Paul on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 18:58:55 from

Awesome race, Jon. Your second half was excellent, pretty much a perfectly split race for that course. Not slowing down the last couple miles and even hitting a sub-6 says a lot about your fitness. Looking forward to seeing what your next chapter of running holds, but know that's still okay to have an occasional fling with the marathon, as long as you both set up some ground rules beforehand.

From Paul on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 19:17:14 from

Proof that Jon can look good when finishing:


From Burt on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 19:27:02 from

Oh man, Jon. You look like a little tea pot, except for the short and stout part.

From jun on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 21:02:58 from

Unreal race report. That was a fun read, probably much more fun to experience. Way to go on 6th. That is amazing.

From rockness18 on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 21:33:26 from

Wow...now that's the way to go out!

From Ashbaker on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 21:53:25 from

Jon! You animal! Hey I think that was interesting that your legs were screaming. I tell you mine were also. To the point they shut down completely..

Very nice Jon, You definitely earned this one.

From Mik'L on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 22:12:11 from

Way to go Jon!!! That is so awesome and your report was entertaining as usual. Love the pic!

From Sasha Pachev on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 23:02:04 from

Congratulations on the breakthrough. I gave you a chance to beat me at St. George last year, but you did not take it. So I figure it is fair that you did what you were supposed to do in St. George last year and that I was also there for a reachable target.

From Bec on Sat, Sep 19, 2009 at 23:49:02 from

Amazing race! 6th overall is out of control. I think that it is great you are heading toward the trail world. TOU will miss your relationship, I am sure of it! Nice work today.

From Jon on Sun, Sep 20, 2009 at 00:23:22 from

Thanks for the kind words, everyone. I would invite everyone to come run a few trail races, too- they are a blast.

Allie- as a local, you should know by now to ask us- there are secret bathrooms at every race.

Clyde- you and many, many other people on this blog are certainly part of my marathoning memories. Thanks to all for sharing with me.

Ruth- we ran together last year. That counts!

Paul- I don't mind occasional flings with the marathon, but it just isn't the same with you beating me in the age group every time! Trails are now my only hope to beat you.

Thanks, Burt. Very true- I'm just hoping no one turns that into a new nickname.

Steve- tough race today. Thanks for running with me- sorry we didn't get to talk more after.

Sasha- thanks for being a good target, even if you have been sick and fighting some injuries. You aimed high and went out hard- comendable. Glad I could finally do "what I was supposed to do" at SGM.

From josse on Sun, Sep 20, 2009 at 00:25:17 from

I'm a little tea pot with fuzzy legs, here is my handle, hear is my spot. When I get all steamed up hear me shout ..... Watch out everyone cause here I come.

From Jon on Sun, Sep 20, 2009 at 00:31:46 from

Josse- you forgot "I'm a little tea pot with fuzzy and deathly-white legs..."

From Walter on Sun, Sep 20, 2009 at 01:18:10 from

Yes, yes, yes! You are the man with the plan in the green shorts! Aint no mountain high enough! What an awesome report! Holy cow! Its amazing to catch those great runners at the end and dust them with a minute with less than 2 miles to go. Holy crap, maybe I need to move up there and you guys can show me how you do it! Freakin' awesome. I swear you and Paul give us non Cache valleyians absolutely no chance up there. You really have something to prove! Way to rock buddy!

From Brent on Sun, Sep 20, 2009 at 13:36:05 from

Jon, 500 commando points for the PR and another 500 for the 6th place. Great race reports, thanks for sharing, very impressed with those uphill mile splits, tough cookie. Also, I guess those green shorts will never be retired after they ran you to a PR.

Stay Kool, don't get lost on the trails, B of BS Rools out

From James on Sun, Sep 20, 2009 at 13:38:58 from

Great race Jon! You definitely earned it by your training and preparation. I wish I could have been there to cheer you on.

From josse on Sun, Sep 20, 2009 at 15:37:17 from

Oh I had my sunglasses on when I was looking at the picture yesterday. Man that is blinding!

From Adam RW on Sun, Sep 20, 2009 at 22:55:11 from

Jon, I'm glad you are able to go out on such a high note. I'm very happy that your training this last year has paid off such high dividends. Congrats on the great PR and age group win. I look forward to seeing what you do when you turn your full focus to the trails. So far you haven't proven too shabby and if that wasn't 100% I'm afraid of what you are going to do to the competition with all your effort on them...

From Marissa on Mon, Sep 21, 2009 at 00:39:39 from

Congratulations-it sounds like you ran a great race!

From Dustin on Mon, Sep 21, 2009 at 13:59:09 from

Congrats great race!

From MarkP on Mon, Sep 21, 2009 at 14:06:47 from

Wow! Super race. See you on the trails.

From Huans32 on Mon, Sep 21, 2009 at 14:12:57 from

Congratz on hitting your goal after so many years. Awesome report and even better race.

From Nan Kennard on Mon, Sep 21, 2009 at 18:47:45 from

Fuzzy Tea Pot-

Congrats on the sub 6:00 breakthrough!! That is SO awesome! And you ran such even splits! Very smart and TOUGH race. I'm sorry to hear you and the Marathon are breaking up...but I'm happy for you that you've found a new love. I'm sure your new love will treat you well and hopefully give you just as much love, if not more love in return.

From Kory on Mon, Sep 21, 2009 at 23:03:11 from

Jon you are a true inspiration. With all those 100 miles weeks leading up to the marathon proved what a champion you are. Your dedicated training paid off nice time and toughness. I bet it felt great to PR in your hometown.

Are you truly done with road racing?

From Jon on Tue, Sep 22, 2009 at 10:05:46 from

Kory- I might still do a few road races every here and there, but I will no longer have them as my focus races like I have for the past 7 years. They will be kind of an afterthought.

From c h a d on Tue, Sep 22, 2009 at 12:06:06 from

Jon--I just talked with the Marathon. She wants her finisher's medals back.

Congrats on the awesome race. What a huge breakthrough. Now on to trails of glory!

From Tony on Wed, Sep 23, 2009 at 13:47:22 from

Wow, you are awesome, man. Congratulations. Hope to see you on a trail run one day. That's my true love as well. Western States 100 in the future?

From Jon on Wed, Sep 23, 2009 at 23:07:14 from

Tony- who can say. I'll get through my first one first and see what I think.

From JimF on Thu, Sep 24, 2009 at 22:01:03 from

Congrats on an awesome race and PR! All your hard work is really paying off.

From sam Dean-Howard on Tue, Nov 03, 2009 at 04:12:05 from

Jon How are you legs I hope they arent too achey ;-)

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