Sunday, November 24, 2013

Marathon man (and 10k woman)

It's taken us 12 years, and we only just managed before leaving, but we've finally discovered what Tsukuba city is good for - road racing! Flat with wide tree-lined roads in full autumn colour, it was as good a course as you could hope for. It is one of the early marathons in the winter season and I had failed to enter the more local Shonan marathon in time, so it was the only option.


The start..and the inevitable mascot.



Based on previous half-marathon results I did have rash hopes of beating 3 hours, and after the inevitable congestion at the start I was only a little behind schedule by half way and was still feeling pretty fresh, but quite suddenly around 26k or so it all started to go a bit pear-shaped so at that point I decided to call off the attempt and complete the rest at a more relaxed pace. Jules was very insistent (and I was happy to agree) that in return for tolerating my training over the summer, I had to make sure I enjoyed it and not knacker myself too much.



Just as well I restrained myself a bit, as it got a lot harder in the last 10k anyway! I even ended up stopping briefly at a couple of feed stations to get in a good drink, as it was hot and thirsty work in the sun (which is why my Garmin time is a bit off, as it's set to pause at stops). Ended up with a real time of 3:06:51 and a position of 735, out of about 11,500 entrants (though probably fewer starters). The official timings are here, (this may be more permanent) but it took me about a minute to even get to the start as I'd been put in the B starting block. There were a lot of slower people in A and the overall winner was a B so I'm not sure how they worked that out. The crowding was a bit annoying for the first 2-3 k but obviously didn't really make much difference in the end.




Jules decided to have one last blast at a proper race rather than just fun running, and easily smashed her previous best 10k with 51:06 (51:42 in net time), making her 109th woman out of 1100+. No pics of her though, because that all took place during my race.


Resting on a handy verge. I'm looking forward to replacing the 2900 calories that my watch tells me I burnt!

6 comments:

William Connolley said...

That's a pretty good time. You get to enter London if you want to.

> quite suddenly around 26k or so it all started to go a bit pear-shaped...

I've heard that one before!

James Annan said...

Well 2014 is all booked up, which is maybe no bad thing...

jules said...

>> quite suddenly around 26k or so it all started to go a bit >>pear-shaped...

>I've heard that one before!

I still think the marathon is too long to be healthy. While some were not in obvious pain, not one person seemed to really be running by the end... The best were kind of gliding smoothly along on obviously dead legs. The one who threw up on the home straight, and then got out of his puddle and carried on to the finish was quite fun too! But I was pleased with J because he had promised to be one of the happy ones, and so he was! He felt a bit queasy for a couple of hours afterwards, but I eventually got him to eat, and after that he was fine.

jules said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
EliRabett said...

While Eli and Ms. Rabett are of the opinion that self abuse is no virtue and certainly so as we approach and pass pear shaped, it does appear that women are better built to withstand the rigors of marathons and beyond FWIW

James Annan said...

I'd agree that is generally the case, though injuries etc can easily over-rule things.

I was either lucky or skilful in that my preparation worked very well in that regard. I had nothing more than tired legs and within a week I seem to be back to normal with no long term effects. Yesterday's run to work was the fastest since last spring, in fact.