While a half-marathon is less trying than a metric (16.3) marathon or a marathon itself, it is more taxing than a 10K or even a 10-miler. But excuse Jeff Hinte if he described Sunday's Harmony Half-Marathon in Harford County as a "nice, little run through the countryside."
That's because, of late, Hinte has been doing longer runs. On Nov. 17, he completed the John F. Kennedy 50-Miler from Boonsboro to Williamsport in 6:50. On Oct. 28, he finished the Escape from Alcatraz Triathlon, a 1 1/2 -mile swim, a 22-mile bike and an 18 1/2 -mile run, in 4 hours, 21 minutes, 2 seconds.
Sunday, Hinte won the Harmony Half in 1:22:20.
"It's a totally different beast," Hinte said Sunday when asked to compare the Harmony run with Alcatraz. "It [the first leg of Alcatraz] straightens you up real quick."
Mike Lears, who along with Chuck Nabit and Mal Steigerwald accompanied Hinte for competition at Alcatraz under the sponsorship of Fleet Feet, would be the first to agree.
"The most amazing experience and what made a 3,000-mile trip [from Baltimore] worthwhile was jumping off a ferry boat into 52-degree water at the face of the cliff at the penitentiary," Lears said.
Lears, who finished in 5:09:26, said: "The bike would have been spectacular, but it was so foggy you couldn't see the other side [of the Golden Gate Bridge]. The run was all on mountain trails in Marin County. One minute, you would be running in streaming sunshine; the next minute, the fog would roll up the mountain and you couldn't see 50 feet in front of you."