zondag 14 januari 2018

Egmond half marathon

22.41k (including warmup)
Start 12.00

Weather was just about perfect, if a wee bit on the cold side. Gentle east wind. Cloudy with even a bit of sun peeking through now and then. 

First 8k was on sand. I'm used to running on sand. First over the soft bit and then out to the flat bit by the sea which is mostly reasonably hard and rather nice to run on. Well it is when 15000 folk haven't run on it before you and churned it all up! 

At about the 3k mark I seriously thought this was going to be the day I didn't finish. My breathing was all over the place, my running form was shot to hell and I had no idea how long it was going to go on for. (Note to self - a bit more course study beforehand wouldn't go amiss.) I was just plodding along, being overtaken by loads of folk and just concentrating on keeping getting air into my lungs and putting one foot in front of the other. (And asking myself why I was doing such a stupid thing anyway.) 

Eventually I started to get some sort of second wind, could pick my head up a bit and look ahead. Decided to turn music on. Dropkick Murphys and Rammstein helped enormously. I tentatively started enjoying myself. And then I could see the ribbon of runners ahead veering off to the left, up through the dunes and onto the dijk. 

What a relief to have solid ground under my feet again. After that it was pretty much a doddle. Picked up my feet and enjoyed running along the nice dry undulating dirtpaths. Overtook a fair number of folk (and was overtaken by others) so it was never just a long boring slog home as some of the smaller runs can be. My goal was just to finish within the 3 hour time limit and I did so with 18 minutes to spare so was well chuffed. (And surprised, after the crappy start.) 

All in all an enjoyable race (oh how quickly we forget the miserable bits) and I'd maybe do it again, with my trail shoes on. (I didn't want to wear them this time as I wasn't sure how much of the course was on hardened bike paths and didn't want to wear them out.) 

Chip time was 2:41:57

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