If I fall, if I die, know I lived it to the fullest
It’s getting late here in The Hague and I have a full day of travel back to Canada tomorrow so I’m going to make this entry short and to the point.
On Wednesday night I flew from Nairobi and landed in Amsterdam Thursday morning. A 35 minute train ride and I was in The Hague.
Last night I found out that the leaders were going out in 14:05 and I decided that was too quick for me. My plan was to go out around 14:40 and hope that others would too. I was wrong. Before the 1km mark it was apparent that this was going to a be a lonely race as I was trailing the lead pack and was well clear of any other runners. At 5km I was 14:45, 40 seconds down from the leaders and 15 seconds in front of the next competitor.
Once I turned into the wind after 5km my splits got slower, my stomach started getting upset and my motivation dwindled. After 10km (29:52) I caught 3 Kenyans and settled in as Derek Hawkins (roommate for the weekend who also had been training in Iten) caught up to me. I led into the wind for a while before Derek took over. Just as I felt it was my turn to take a pull into the wind I realized I was going to have to pull over for a bathroom break. I left the pack, found a little building amongst some bushes and did my business. This is the second time it’s ever happened to me in a race and… well, it’s not conducive to running fast.
When I got back onto the course I was well behind the pack I had been running with, plus a group of Europeans were on my tail. I put my head down over the next 5km into the wind to catch back up to the group (splitting 15km in 45:39). I settled-in for 20 seconds and the Euros caught up, apparently I kind of pulled them along. At this point I was kind of pissed at this race so I took to the front, pushed the pace and broke the pack except for a few guys. I ended up running my last 1.1km in 3:10 (2:54/km pace) and felt pretty good getting the pace going again.
My result was 1:04:24 for 18th place. Coming into the race I wanted to run under 62:30 but on the morning of the race, with the heavy wind, I thought 63:20 would be a realistic goal. I missed that time, by a lot. I still believe my fitness is on track for a PB at the Rotterdam marathon. Ya, I was supposed to wait to announce my intentions to run Rotterdam until they made their press release. oh well.
It’s time to get back to Guelph and put the finishing touches on this marathon build-up. I’m excited to get to sea-level and nail down some marathon pace.
I went to Rotterdam on Friday and previewed some of the course, including the biggest hill, which is this bridge.