31st January 2016
A warm story. Written shortly after crossing the finish line. Right after a hot shower and washing my running shoes.
Today was the “Gerar” Half Marathon. The first half marathon for 2016. I heard a lot about it, a lot of publicity, on social media, but mostly while running. A smart move for them in 2015. In the race kit, they added a branded buff. A running T-shirt you get almost everywhere, but a buff it’s something you should have if you plan on running in winter.
According to its name, it should have been freezing cold, and I was prepared for the worst. The 2015 pictures showed runners with frozen beards. But it wasn’t as cold. One week ago I did a 9k run at -10°C. It wasn’t that bad. It was a cold, but sunny morning.
I never ran in the Politechnical University Campus before that training, but even with the cold weather, and ice on the ground, I liked the place. It’s not a boring track, no long lines, one small uphill, followed by a longer downhill, with approximately 3.5km laps.
From time to time the track was marked with funny messages like “stop the chat, run harder”, “the mass x acceleration be with you!” (a reference to Star Wars) or “This is Gerar!” (a reference to Leonida’s “This is Sparta” line), and many others, which I don’t remember. I was focused more on the running part.
For the marathon challenge, we had to take six laps around the campus. This time, I was running in a team, together with my brother and a new friend.
At 9 AM the start was given for the male teams. By the time we, the mix teams, took the start at 10 45 AM, the 9 AM winners were already doing their after run stretchings.
The best part of the track was that short uphill and the downhill after. I felt like sprinting on the uphill and going even faster on the downhill.
On the last lap, I realized that maybe I’ve been too cocky. The ice was melted, and small ponds were everywhere. I jumped from left to right to avoid them, and now my knees didn’t feel alright. So when we decided to slow down on the last part, it was a good call. It took 1-2 km for the pain to disappear.
We crossed the finish line together in 1:56:27, and ranked 20 out of 84 mix teams. In the first three laps, we had a constant pace of 18min/lap, and then we slowed down a bit. We just wanted to be sure we will cross that line together.
It’s been a fun race, well organized, good crowd, one of the best medal designs so far. Most probably I will visit it again in 2017.
Thank you for visiting!!!