As you probably know, I love to run. I played soccer my entire childhood, so running was ”in me” without even really knowing how great it made me feel. For more than 5 years now, I’ve been running every week, good or bad weather.
When I run, I got ”in my zone” pretty quickly and I feel free. I don’t think about anything or anyone. Just me. Me against myself, trying to surpass my limits.
Here’s a quick breakdown how this memorable journey went down.
This year, the course was completely changed compare to the previous years. Before, a good portion of the race was located at the Jean-Drapeau park, facing the La Ronde (Six Flags) under the Jacques Cartier bridge. This time, the race started downtown Montreal and went through the west of the city for the first 21 km and then to the east of the city (close to my house) and back to downtown.
Last September, I had the chance to run my second marathon of 2018. The Montreal’s marathon (Rock N Roll series). I was able to complete it in 4 hours 18 minutes. I was a little disappointed since my goal was to finish it in less than 4 hours. For my first marathon, finished it in 4h09. I knew I could do better but some circumstances made me drop my time.
But my main goal was once again to finish a marathon without any big injury and try to have fun.
Ups and Downs… A Mind Game
I accomplished the first half of the race without any problems and I was having fun. The second part of the marathon was completely the opposite due to cramps on both of my legs. It felt like my quads were completely hard/solid and I had to stop a couple of times.
I had the chance to have a friend motivating me during that painful moment of the race. His presence wasn’t planned but he’s living near where the course was. His words was helped me to stay mentally strong during the rest of the marathon too.
My Running Pace
Having a steady running pace through all the race let you accomplished a set goal without rushing too much and finish the race without any big (physical and health) problems. This also allows you to concentrate on your breathing and running tips that I used during my 3 months of training.
To finish my run in less than 4 hours, my running pace had to be around 5 minutes 20 seconds for every kilometer ran. You can find a chart online to guide you, similar to this one below.
My Strava Data
Made for cyclists and runners, Strava is one of the best app to monitor, evaluate and share your races. These apps help me check my race pace and see where I can or need to improve in the future. Here’s the main dashboard.
With all the data, you can see your top results during the race, like Best estimated 20K or 30K. As you can see, I was doing pretty good for the first half-marathon and even after 30 km. After that, everything when the worst due to my cramps. You can see it if we analyze quickly the second part of the course with the Splits.
My cramps started slowly around kilometer 25 and when bad for the next 10 km +. My pace went from 5:20/km to 7-8 minutes/km. I was able to keep up and jog to help relief my pain. Stopping, walking and trying to run again is the baddest thing to do when you have cramps because it hurts even more. By jogging and staying mentally strong, I was at least able to keep a 7 minutes pace.
Many experts say the same: You have to keep going. You can find some tips online when something goes wrong during a race.
Here’s an example coming out from YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XCHap_Nfat4
And Finally, Some Pictures…
Here’s some pictures from this awesome day. Unfortunately, I didn’t bought all the pictures since the package cost more than $150! That’s something that I found too expensive (a single digital picture cost $30 !) for the runners with the Rock N Roll series.
Me, right after passing the finish line (yes, I was freaking exhausted!)
Some pictures from this incredible event
Me, struggling a couple of meters before the finish line!
So what’s next?
After two marathons in less than 6 months I am already focusing on my next run, the Hypothermic Half Marathon in Montreal. This one will be a new challenge for the next year. Running in winter, at – 4 Fahrenheit (-20 Celsius) with a lot of snow will be crazy! It will be a completely different game!
I will also try to concentrate on improving my half-marathon time (around 2 hours) in the snow.
So what is your next goal? Are you planning to start running?
Leave a quick comment below so we can interact a little more ! 🙂