WILTON, Conn. – Three Wilton women made the most of their training for the New York City Marathon when they instead ran in the Philadelphia race Nov. 20.
Kate Denious and Kacky Theoharides set personal bests, while Lynn DiNanno covered the 26.2 mile distance for the first time in the Philadelphia Marathon.
The women had been registered for the New York Marathon. When that race was canceled after Hurricane Sandy, they debated their options before deciding to head to Philly for the race.
Denious ran 3:25:48 in her fifth marathon, and improved her time by nearly five minutes from her previous best. Theoharides had an impressive 12-minute drop, finishing in 3:32:04, DiNannon ran 3:37.53.
The women ran together for the first 18 miles, Theoharides said. They had also trained together in a program conducted by the Wilton Parks and Recreation Department. Mary Zengo, one of Fairfield County’s top women distance runners and a Wilton resident, developed a training plan that the three women followed.
“The workouts Mary planned for us were one of the big reasons we all did so well,’’ Theoharides said. “She trained us a lot on fueling - what to eat and drink. It was nice to have company on the workouts. I can’t believe she does them on her own.”
The three faced multiple challenges heading into the race. Hurricane Sandy altered training plans, and they even considered not running a marathon at all.
"We were so wishy-washy on whether we were going to do one,’’ Theoharides said. “We were busy, we have tons of kids, and we weren’t able to do a whole lot. For two weeks, there wasn’t a whole lot of running. Maybe that was a good thing.”