Göteborgsvarvet 2013

A week after Vincents birthday I ran Göteborgsvarvet for the second year in a row. This was actually my first race I have done twice. The race is the world’s largest half marathon with over 60,000 starters.
Last year it was cloudy and 8c. This year it was clear blue skies, sunny and hot. I started around 2 pm and by then the temp was +24c in the shadow. The start was really crowded, and it took almost 5k to be able to run my pace. At the highest point of the race, on top of a highway bridge, thunder and lightining started along with strong winds, rain and hail. It was nice to cool down a bit, but the sun was back soon, making the rest of the run sauna-like as the steam was coming of the streets. Drinking every 2k and pouring a cup of cold water on my head kept me hydrated and not over-heated. Runners were fainting all along due to the heat.
I finnished a little over 4 min faster in my official time of 1.57.13 and I am very pleased with that. My garmin told me I actually ran 22.1km as I zig zagged alot to pass many in the beginning, so unoficially I broke my PR of 1.56.12 (which is from a very flat half, this is a rather hilly run). And of course I already signed up for 2014s Göteborgsvarv.

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At 17k

Gamla Göteborgsvarvet

Last Saturday there was a paced training half marathon. The route was the original Göteborgsvarvet as it was the first year it was run in 1980. Back then a few hundred ran, now Göteborgsvarvet is the largest half marathon in the world. This year over 70,000 people will run the weekend of May 18.
So, last Saturday was paced at 6.30min per km. About 600 showed up to run the half at 8am. The weather was no fun with fog and light rain and 1c. But the race itself was SO much fun. I ran with a running friend and we talked the whole way around and laughed and had fun. The km just went by and when we were at 18km, we just could not believe how fast the timehad gone by. Next thing we were at 21k, grabbed some chocolate and water and headed for sauna, cold swim and hot tub. By 11.30 am we were heading back home ready to start the rest of the day!

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Breakfast, coffee and magnesium

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About to cross Älvsborgsbron.

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Happy faces:)

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Fun part: running a half marathon partly through a mall (Nordstan)

Göteborgsvarvet in Numbers

It has been 2 weeks, but I forgot to hit post on this post.

62,513 ran the halfmarathon.

32.7% were female runners.
Median race time men/women: 1.54.49/2.07.30

My place was 5310 total and 938 among the women.

Placering 5310
Placering (Åldersklass) 938
Totaltid 02:01:33
Genomsnittsfart 05.46 min/km
Split Klockan Tid Sträcktid min/km km/h Plac.
5K 15:08:19 00:28:57 28:57 05:48 10.36 6624
10K 15:36:59 00:57:37 28:40 05:44 10.47 6441
15K 16:05:25 01:26:03 28:26 05:42 10.55 5740
20K 16:34:51 01:55:29 29:26 05:54 10.19 5332
Mål 16:40:55 02:01:33 06:04 05:32 10.86 5310

It bugs the hell out of me that I did not get under 2 hours, but I guess I have a new goal to meet for next years race. I already booked a place, as they fill up quickly!
The race was fun! The kilometers went by really quickly and I enjoyed it. The streets were lined with people cheering the whole way from start to finnish. So it was an amazing feeling. I wish I had stayed healthy the week before I would have been under the two hours mark… Anyways…

Everyone kept talking about the first bridge, Älvsborgsbron, which comes after about 4km. It was loooong. But I ran behind a large man who kept most of the  head winds away from me.

The second bridge was fine, minus that it was narrower and my music and Garmin was turned of by a guy who ran passed me. So when I checked and had 1.18 at 16 km and was thrilled with my pace, just to realize at at 17km I was still at 1.18 time, I actually had no clue about my pace….Still, the greatest race I have participated in, and for sure a race I want to run many many more times.’

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About 8ks into the race

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Around 12k

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Onto Avenyn, ca 16k

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Rounding Götaplatsen, ca 17k

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After the finish line

Grazer Halbmarathon 2012

I had my suspicions after picking up my number and chip, that this race was not going to be very well-organized. And I was right. It was OK before and at the start. Easy access, lots of WCs, and a big area to prepare at. Then off we went, on time, which is good and not a given when they have to stop all traffic in the city and some of the cable cart lines. So plus for that.

The weather was perfect. Sunny, a bit of a wind and around +20 c at the start. I felt fine and hit a runner’s high around 5k and felt really good. At the second water station (around 11k) they were not prepared at all, and there was no water ready (or energy drinks). There were a bunch of kids handling it along with one or two adults I did not feel like waiting for them to place cups out and to pour the water so I just ran on.  I mean, come on I a mom myself and this is to some extent a mommy blog, but what the hell peeps, if the kid can’t pour water DO NOT USE THEM as water people, just sayin’…

The race was along the river so no shade at all for pretty much the complete 21.1km. The lack of water at 11k had me in pretty quick. I still paced around 5.15-5.25min per km. Around 14k my mouth was completely dry, and when I finally got to the third water station I signalled way a head for 2 waters.
The lady there was sharp and came out with it. Great. I kept running straight ahead, when someone shouts wrong direction? What the hell, there was no one stopping that open road as this is where you would come back later. Pissed me off. I was already low of fluids and could feel it, and that no one stood there to close off that road annoyed me. I was not the only one who ran there either.

Anyways, the race went on, and I  was able to re-connect with the people I had used as pacers. But it was hot. And sunny, and no shade. At 18k we turned and ran upwards along the river where the landscape is more open and the wind was picking up and blowing a rather strong head wind. I was gassed out by now. Then a man with one leg ran by me, or he had one of those spring running things where his missing leg was, that was enough of a motivation I picked up my pace a bit. The last 2km I wanted to die, and kept asking myself why am I doing this? But then, with the goal up ahead I picked up and ran in on 1.59.58. So I am happy with that. Goal was to be under 2 hours, and I was. The time was not what I had wished for, but it is Ok. Now I have something to beat in 6 weeks.

Because most of the route was along the river walk there was also not a whole lot of people watching the race. There was no music played at water stations or along the route to help you get going. In comparison to my first half marathon (which I loved the whole way and I was just smiling al the way), this was not as fun. I would not run it again.

And finally some pics 🙂 Thanks lovely S for coming by and for driving me home!!!!

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Finished

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Stretching out with very important color coordinated nail polish.
And even though I wanted to die the last 2ks, nothing beats the feeling in goal. Makes it all worth it!

Graz Halbmarathon

In the middle of our moving plans, I decided to run the Grazer Halbmarathon on Sunday. I picked up my number today, and I must say I am glad this is not my first half.
There was no map of the race itself (just a long list of street name listings), and the goody bag was pretty far from being good. A Red Bull similar drink, some magnesium and a deodorant(?). No one at the pick up knew where the water stations will be and no one knew what was offered at each except for water. They did know there will be four stations at least. The start and end of the race is in a pretty non-exciting street (Herrgottwissgasse). The organization seems a bit off, but I am still excited for a race. I guess it will be a good test for my next half marathon in 6 weeks (Göteborgsvarvet), also known as the world’s largest half marathon.

The weather forecast says 19c and sunshine for Sunday. Sounds good to me! 

Pic from I love to Run

Run Forrest, Run

Some time in later October I started having muscle pains in my thighs after running. Mainly on the back side of the thigh. I tried resting, both voluntarily and after surgery. I tried Voltaren gel and I tried anti-inflammatory pills. Nothing really helped. Finally, I made an appointment in late December with a private sports doctor. But before that appointment I went for a 15k run, just in case she would tell me that running was out of the question for a month or so.
Fortunately, that was not the case. But she did say that I need to do more back strengthening and stomach strengthening exercises. She also cracked my back and made foot imprints as apparently I need insoles for my running shoes. Some 70 euros later and with two new appointments, one for x-rays and one for a physical therapist, she sent me home. After the back cracking the leg felt a lot better and I did not feel anything during the Silvesterlauf.
The x-rays showed nothing special. The physical therapist looked at my back and had me do some strange back bending exercises before she confirmed that my legs are not the same length. The left leg is about 0.5cm shorter, causing me to run unevenly, or more correctly, to put the weight differently on different legs, hence the pain. She then pressed a point on my butt and I was about to knock her off her feet. The pain was BAD. Just what she had thought, a typical case of Piriformis Syndrome. She offered me a big, bad shot in my but that I politely declined. After that appointment, which was last Friday, my left leg is back to feeling heavy while running and the shooting pain from the butt and down in the leg while sitting. Not really comfortable. I stretch and stretch and stretch some more. Sometimes it helps, sometimes not so much. I have one more appointment with the back cracking lady and that should be good.

In the mean time, I am picking up my insoles for the running shoes next week. Hopefully that will help too.
I decided to do a half marathon in Graz on March 25th and this week I jump started into week to of this intermediate running schedule. Let’s hope the back cracking lady fixes me up good.