Sunday, October 3, 2010

Josh Moen hoping for a good Twin Cities Marathon

DesMoines Register reports
Josh Moen enters Sunday’s Twin Cities Marathon with cautious optimism.

The former Wartburg College national champion from Readlyn, Ia., will attempt the marathon distance for the third time. The first two results were not to his liking.

At the Twin Cities race in 2008, he debuted with a 2-hour, 23-minute, 16-second time on a cold, wet day. Then, at last year’s New York City Marathon, Moen went out too fast and didn’t finish.

“What happened to me happened to me in the past,” Moen said this week. “lt feels like it’s coming.”

Moen, Team USA Minnesota runner from the Twin Cities, has good feelings about the Minneapolis-St. Paul race. At the 2009 USA Men’s 10 Mile Championships, held in conjunction with the Twin Cities Marathon, Moen placed second in 46:36. That time was the fifth-fastest ever by an American at that distance.

“Last year was the 10-miler and I’m looking at it a little different,” Moen, 28, said. “I’m relaxed going in. I do have limits. I don’t want to run under 5:10 per mile at any point.”

Moen said he committed to the marathon late, only two months ago. He has also had the disadvantage of doing almost all of his training by himself.

“I’m no less fit, but I have less marathon-specific stuff coming in,” Moen said. “I’ve been training all alone. I can train alone, but I don’t prefer it.”

Moen prepared for the race with two road races. At the New Haven Road Race 20k in Connecticut on Labor Day Weekend, Moen placed 14th while running 5:02 pace. At the City of Lakes 25k in Minneapolis three weeks ago, Moen cruised to the win in 1:18:59. He said he held back in both races to focus more on running marathon pace.

“That was a very solid week,” Moen said of the week ending with the City of Lakes win. “I didn’t want to race it. It turned into more of a hard run. When I finished that one, I knew I would be OK.”

Moen would like to break 2:20 and give himself a chance for a top-10 finish in the race, which also doubles as the USA Men’s Marathon Championship. He believes the winner will run 2:15.

“When you get a lot of guys together, the pace will be good,” Moen said. “It will be slow for awhile (at the start), but it will eventually pick up. I have to hold it back a lot this weekend. I want to watch the field and make sure I don’t cross over the red line.”