Name: Mark Puleo
Age (at the time of first BQ): 19
Height (at the time of first BQ): 5’10
Weight (at the time of first BQ): 145
At which marathon did you get your first BQ? Philadelphia Marathon
Tell us a little about the race. It was a week after my club cross country team had competed at our Nationals meet and my legs were absolutely destroyed the whole week leading into it. I had only run twice in the week leading up the marathon (which was my first) and I was terrified because qualifying for Boston was my lifelong goal, stretching back to third grade. I was hoping adrenaline and a slightly slower pace would loosen up my legs after the first few miles, but that aching pain from the preceding XC season didn’t go away until mile 13. I went through 13.1 in 2:29, I would’ve been pumped to break 3:00. But then something crazy happened in the second half and all my pain seemed to go away. I started sprinting like a mad man (I was a stupid college sophomore anyway) starting at like 17 and somehow just never tired until mile 25. I ended up with a finishing time of 2:49:40, one of the crazier negative splits of my life in my first ever marathon!
How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ? 8 yers
Did you run in college or high school? Yes
What was your approximate lifetime mileage at the time of your first BQ? 50 miles per week
How many miles did you run in the year before your first BQ?
Approximately how many races did you run in that year? 15
Did you follow a canned program? If so, which one? If not, can you give us an idea of what your training philosophy was? No, I did cross country training with more intense long runs
Did you run with a running club or utilize a coach? Yes
Did cross training play a role in your training? If so, how? No
Did speed work play a role in your training? If so, how? Yes, cross country training really got me mentally prepared for the longer tempos that my marathon training required. It was very helpful to have those two training programs going on at the same time.
Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ?