Yesterday, I participated in the Greifenseelauf (a half-marathon).

As with all of the last races I’ve done this year, I took a fairly relaxed attitude and only went running twice (!) in the 4 weeks before the race. I knew that finishing the race would still not be a problem, but I was quite surprised when I managed to finish in a pretty decent time (by my standards): 1h38.36. This put me 968th out of 5927 male finishers. If there was a weighting according to the time spent in training then my placement would surely be even better.   🙂

I guess that my “experience” was probably my biggest (or only?) strength. E.g., I managed to avoid the usual frenzy at the beginning. Most people start too fast and then begin to suffer (and slow down) in the second half. Closely monitoring my heartbeat has always helped me. I actually managed to speed up in the second half and was only 1672th after the first 10km. This is also a big psychological advantage as you’re then constantly passing people in the second half. The results are here.

The only annoying thing is that now I sort of feel that I “have to” also aim for a reasonable time in the marathon in Lausanne in October. Still not sure what to do. Though I was not really “suffering” during the half-marathon, I was still not as relaxed as usual and was not waving or smiling at the crowd or chatting with other runners. I can’t even say whether I enjoyed the scenery or not because I was too focused on “racing”. My most enjoyable marathons so far were the slowest ones where I just used the marathons as long practice runs. There I could smile and I could chat and enjoy the whole atmosphere. Oh well, I’ll see.