This season is slowly getting serious – the first marathon is done and the Challenge Championship is only 6 weeks away.
It was a relatively spontaneous decision to run this one as I received a free slot from Krombacher (so I guess it’s advertising now ;)) and I had to run it without any specific marathon preparation, as it was only meant as a performance test before the triathlon season get’s serious.
I was actually really looking forward to this run. Leipzig is a very nice city, not far from Berlin, it’s not a huge event like Berlin Marathon and I somehow needed the race-feeling again. But then I saw the weather forecast… 2 degrees Celsius and sleet at the start time. Additionally I had to travel to a workshop on quite a short notice, coming back home on Friday evening, and flying, even short distance is always quite a performance killer.
I was not really sure about racing until Sunday morning. I didn’t want risk getting sick in a race that’s not my priority and possibly ruining my IronMan training. But as I woke up I actually got pretty motivated and went to the start line with a huge smile
The moment we started, icy rain started pouring from the sky, but at this point I didn’t really care. I started easy – or at least that how it felt and was quite surprised finding myself in the group following the 3:45 pacemaker. I didn’t really have particular finishing time goals for this race, just the wish to be at least a minute faster than last year at Zürich Marathon, which I ran in 3:56 (and under totally different weather conditions – 28 degrees and permanent sunshine)
During the first 21 kilometers I felt like I was flying instead of running. I run my fastest 3 miles, 5 kilometers, 10 kilometers, 15 kilometers and fastest half-marathon. I was well hydrated, sticking to my nutrition routine and my legs felt really light (thanks to the very painful but very relieving massage at the most awesome massage place in Berlin – Der Wohlfühler). I somehow was in a totally good mood – for reasons not totally clear to me 😉 and was smiling my way through this terrible weather.
At about 25 kilometers it all started getting a little harder. My feet and hands are pretty sensitive when it comes to the cold and I basically stopped feeling them at all. That made running a little harder and I got cramps in very strange places – midfoot and ankle, didn’t know that it’s even possible 😉 and it took ages to get a gel out of my pocket and open it. But what should you do when things get harder? More smiling 😀
So I smiled my way to the finish line, which I crossed after 3 hours 49 minutes, soaking wet, shivering and in a desperate need for a hot shower but very happy with my performance. AND, the guy announcing the incoming finishers knew how to pronounce my name correctly – many thanks for that, it doesn’t happen too often 😉
Also big thanks for or the volunteers on the course standing there in the cold and rain the whole time, serving water and food and cheering us up. Generally the whole event was pretty well organized, the checkin, bag storage, etc. everything worked perfectly. I’m looking forward to running there again – hopefully in different weather conditions.
Not to forget, as I’m still in the process of finding the best long distance running shoes – I run in Saucony Ride 10, and they did really, really well. I hope, the new version (Saucony Ride Iso) will do at least as good as the older one 🙂