— ASICS America (@ASICSamerica) November 6, 2016
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In her first ever marathon, Olympic triathlon champion Gwen Jorgensen crossed the finish line of the TCS New York City Marathon in 2:41:01 on Sunday. For Jorgensen, this first marathon attempt was a simply a bucket-list endeavour and a way to cap off a year of triathlons. Known as the best runner on the International Triathlon Union circuit, Jorgensen wanted to test her skills in her favourite triathlon discipline in a new setting.
Before the race, Jorgensen said in a teleconference interview with New York Road Runners (NYRR) that she had no expectations heading into this morning’s race.
“That’s the question I get asked the most. Every [triathlon] I go into I have expectations, and I know from my training what I can accomplish. For the marathon, I have no idea. I have way too much respect for the marathon and the course, so I’m not setting any goals or expectations. I have no idea what will happen on race day. I did a 10-mile race a few weeks ago. Every step over 10 miles will be a new experience. For me that is the excitement. I’m smiling thinking about it right now.”
Jorgensen’s longest run before her marathon was 25K, and her prep included lots of biking and swimming as she had some major triathlons in the past few months still on the calendar for 2016 when she committed to the marathon. Besides September’s ITU Grand Final in Cozumel where she placed second, Jorgensen won the Island House Invitational triathlon last weekend for the second year in a row.
Jorgensen averaged 6:09 minutes per mile, or 3:49 per kilometre for the 42.2K distance. For the first part of the race, she hung with a lead pack of women including Canada’s top female marathon runner, Lanni Marchant and overall women’s race winner Mary Keitany. Up until 12 miles into the course, Jorgensen was running well under 6 minutes per mile.
Jorgensen received lots of support on social media from fellow triathletes and notable runners in the community. She said prior to the race that she had received advice from top American marathoners Kara Goucher and Shalane Flanagan.
This story is courtesy Triathlon Magazine Canada.