Congratulations Jeff on running your first PPM! This is an awesome race on a beautiful mountain! :)
A little bit of info on me. I'm a back-of-the-pack runner in the PPA/PPM races with an Ascent time of 5:18 when I last ran it in 2010. I've got five Ascents and three Marathons under my belt.
When I'm doing the races, I treat the Ascent/Ascent portion of the Marathon the same way. I usually don't go for a big push until around the last mile to the summit. At that point, the EPCSAR are probably playing their kazoos to give me an extra mental boost and I feel confident that I'm going to make it to the top! Every time I've made the turn-around, I've felt re-energized and ready to take on the downhill. It's a great feeling!
With all of that being said, I'm not a highly competitive person. I race against myself and my two main goals for these races (besides finishing!) are to keep moving forward/up/down and to be in the moment & have fun (sometimes easier said than done!)...definitely an "attitude of gratitude" that I can run these races. :)
I hope this has helped you and any other first timers. Good luck on the 18th...you've got this!!
In response to:
I ran the Ascent last year, but this is my first PPM.
I'm wondering how you veteran PPM runners manage your effort for the final push (say 2 miles) to the summit. Do you go all out as you would for the Ascent, or do you hold back a little ?
It seems to me that since O2 is the overwhelming limitation up there, that "going all out" doesn't really tax the rest of the body so much. On (slow) training runs to the summit I feel pretty good the moment I turn around. Is this true for you on race day ?