Paris Marathon 2013: Not a 3rd time lucky

I came to Paris with a target to run a sub 3:45 marathon and I was quietly confident that it is very achievable. My training has been good and I managed to stay injury free. This was the only marathon that I was not too anxious about. But things took a wrong turn leading up to the race and my sub 3:45 dream was over even before I started the race on the world's famous avenue, Champs Elysees.

The marathon was incorporated into my grand family vacation in Europe. The 13 days vacation started with a 5 days stay in London, before we flew to Amsterdam and stayed for 3 days before finally end the trip in Paris for another 5 days.  It was a big mistake. The travelling itself was too tiring and I had muscles pain and fever as a result. Not only that, I was also having gastric attack for 2 days. The first in a long time. But the worst is yet to come. A traveller's nightmare. I had a nasty food poisoning 4 days leading up to the race. I frequented the toilet more than 12 times a day and lost 2 kg of body weight in those 4 days. I even had to use the bathroom twice before I left the apartment on the race day. I took one Imodium and had burnt toast (a Tee Morgan's recipe) for breakfast to stop the diarrhoea. I was fatigued and dehydrated, I did not even think I could run a kilometre. I have spent too much time and money to be here, call me hard headed but DNS was not an option.

I started the race very well and ran at my target marathon pace. It felt so easy and for a minute I thought THIS could be the day where I defy all odds and run my best marathon yet. Boy I was wrong. My energy and glycogen reserve depleted so fast it only last me for 10 km. I finished the first 10km in 52:13 but had to dig deep to maintain the pace. I have given up my 3:45 target and now happy if I can just finish sub 4 hours. I toughen up and completed the 1st half of the marathon in 1:55:47. By then I was so tired and my mouth felt cotton dry even though I stop at every water station to re hydrate. One thing that I hate about Paris Marathon despite its status as an IAAF Gold Label race was the lack of energy drink at the water stations. We were only served with Powerrade once at KM 22 in a paper cup. I would have brought along my hydration salt on the race had I known earlier. I spent most of my 2nd half walking. I saw many people quit the race, but I have come too far to quit now so I persevered and finished the second half of the marathon in an abysmal time of 2:51.

I crossed the finish line in 4:45:29, my worst ever marathon result but I was not sad. I may have lost the race but I won the battle. I proved that I was stronger than my pain.

Quiting is NOT an option

Race Statistics:
Nett Time: 4:45:29
Gun Time: 5:13:56
Rank Total: 27836/ 38690 (Sub 6:30Finisher)
Rank Male: 26106/ Finisher
Rank Category: 11693
Rank Malaysian: unknown
Shoe: Asics Gel Kayano 19


Matjoe said…
tahniah bro. terbaek la walaupun mcm2 jadi. sub 5 hour tu pun bukan senang
Matjoe said…
sub 3:45 nnti buat kat new york marathon
Thanks Matjoe:

Dugaan.. kekadang tak semua kita nak tu jadi. But I will not give up.

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