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Runners battle cold, wind during Philadelphia Marathon

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PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) — Tens of thousands of athletes competed in the Philadelphia marathon Sunday, battling both frigid temperatures and high winds on their way to the finish line.

The 29th annual AACR Philadelphia Marathon attracted 30,000 athletes from around the world who were met with less than ideal conditions at the starting line.

“My feet were asleep for the first like seven miles, so took an hour or so, felt good for about an hour,” said Josh Podl from Cleveland, Ohio.

Some athletes claimed the best way to warm up was to keep running; some said they even enjoyed the weather.

“The conditions actually weren’t bad. It was cool, keep your body temperature low and it was a really fun, well-organized event,” said Andrew Knoll from Brooklyn, New York.

“I used to ski, or ski race, so I was like this feels like ski racing, just think of it that way,” said Emily Von Loesecke from New York City.

Despite the wind, the top athletes finished at a near record race. Dominic Ondoro from Texas won the male competition, finishing about 2 hours and 14 minutes. Meanwhile, a Philadelphian claimed the top female spot. Amber Zimmerman broke the tape in 2 hours and 31 minutes, a personal best for her.

While Zimmerman will train for Olympic trials, fellow Philadelphian Phoebe Clouser has a wedding to plan! She crossed the finish line with a personal best to find her boyfriend, Rourke, on one knee on the other side.

“This is the best surprise ever and I love him so much so this is great,” said Clouser.

“Do it in front of both of our families and the city that she’s from and loves so much and the sport she loves so much, I thought it was the perfect time,” said Rourke Massey, her new fiance.

The marathon did cause road closures around the city. Officials say Eakins Oval and the Benjamin Franklin Parkway are expected to be fully open to traffic by 5:00 p.m.

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