05/20/2012 07:31 EDT | Updated 07/20/2012 05:12 EDT

Blue Nose Marathon draws thousands to Halifax

Thousands of Maritimers are likely nursing sore muscles after taking part in the Blue Nose Marathon Sunday morning.

Runners wound through the streets of Halifax all morning as part of the event.

The full 42-kilometre marathon drew 338 participants. Mike MacKinnon, 39, of Miscouche, P.E.I. crossed the finish line first, claiming a time of 2:42.

"It's a different kind of course in there. You're twisting and winding. You don't realize how fast you're going," he said.

"At 40 kilometres I said I hope I have a good enough lead because I thought I was dying, but the last two kilometres I always seem to bounce back," he said.

In the women's category, Mylene Sansoucy, 30, of Montreal claimed the top spot for the second year in a row.

"The last 15 kilometres I had to change a couple of times my running pace and shake my legs a little bit," she said. "I was suffering a bit from dehydration I guess."

Sansoucy said the heat slowed her down, but she still loved the race.

"I'm really satisfied. I'm not running to win, I'm running against me."

In all, more than 8,000 people ran the various races. The Blue Nose features full and half marathons, along with five and 10 kilometre races.

"We've had about a 20 per cent growth rate in runners every year, and I think that can be attributed to the actual increase in health and wellness and active living," said Gerry Walsh, co-chair of the marathon.

Saturday, 3,500 kids took part in the youth run, meaning a total of 12,000 runners were involved in this year's event.