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Monday, October 29, 2007

Finally...2:02:27

I cleared the 23-24Km (according to some estimates) in 2.02 mins. We went through a long route because of confusion amongst the organizers of the race and as a result some 1.5-3 Kms were added to the distance. There were of course the elite runners who numbered around 200 and on our side of the start, there were at least 100 runners who run for a living. There were many experienced runners from over ten countries and of various sizes. I enjoyed the last 8Kms where I passed hundreds of runners. I estimate that we were 6,000 runners in the 21Kms.

At any rate, I am not too proud of my time. Mistake number one was that I forgot to carry along my watch so I had no way of timing myself and knowing when to push harder. This meant I could only use my body as a guide.

Mistake number two is that I adopted a strategy that was too conservative and I ended up completing the race with lots of energy left unused. I held myself back for too long and started too slow. So even as I was overtaking hundreds of people in the middle and end of the race and gaining a lot of satisfaction, I was still not fast enough because I was running among the slow.
I ran a very comfortable race. I never pushed myself and never put any effort except in the last 400m. I let my body pick its pace and I just let it go. I managed to be the best amongst my friends and colleagues and I passed the ones who started very fast, past the 13Km mark, so perhaps my strategy was not so bad. Everyone I passed past the 9Km mark never overtook me again as my pace picked. And I passed almost everyone I saw from the 10Km mark except one lady at the finnish.
Now, whats good is that I managed to complete the race without walking at any time. Secondly, I slashed off 32minutes from my last time. Thirdly, I learnt that I have lots of energy and now my strategy should focus on how to release it efficiently over the 21Kms.
I have already decided to slash off 40minutes from my time and enter the top 400 (I was No. 707 from No. 1369 last year). I am confident that I can do it in 12 months. I have what it takes.

Here is the game plan.

Rest for two-three weeks and let my injury heal and my body recover.

Start by running short distances daily or four times per week.

Reduce occurrence of injury by warming up for longer distances before picking up the pace.

Run 25Kms seven times next year. This is to help increase my glycogen stores so that I can confidently run w/o fear of burning out.

Strive to run 5Kms in under 20minutes and 10Kms in under 40 minutes.

Vary my running route to include Thika Road, which has hills.

Push myself as hard as hell through at least 600Kms in 12 months. But this is long term and I dont believe work gets done in the long term so I will formulate my short term strategy soon enough.
I am the proud recipient of the certificate and medal below.

Now excuse me while I enjoy my two weeks rest.


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