Week 15 and 16 - The ones with the race in Greece

Posted on: 27 May 2018

Ok, I found a new theme for my headlines. =) =) 

After the weekend in London I only had to work 4 days before it was time to pack the bags again and go on the next holiday, this time I was heading to Greece and the lovely island of Rhodes.

I managed to get one run in during the week, a distance run of 6 km on Wednesday. 

We left on Saturday evening and this time I had a lot more time to get to the airport so no stress at all. Flight was on time, bagage came on time and transfer bus did it's job. Even so we were at the hotel around midnight, and I really needed some water, so we took a walk to get some. 

On Sunday morning I had signed up to run the Rhodes half marathon, and the start was at 7:30, so a very early start after traveling. The hotel had kindly made me a breakfast bag the night before, it wasn't the best running food, but at least something to eat before. I think I fell asleep some time after 2 am and the alarm went of at 6 am, so not a lot of sleep. And eating just an hour before the start is not the best, but it was a decision to sleep 4 hours and eat late. It was already warm outside when I headed to the start around 7, or at least warmer than Sweden. I think it was around 25 degrees so a bit like London the week before. 

Since we arrived so late the night before I had to ask the organizer to put my number at the information desk instead, which they gladly did, and it worked out very well. I would estimate the runners to around 500, some did the full marathon and some (like me) did the half marathon. I started out at the back of the pack, like I always do if I have the choice, since I know most will pass me otherwise. This way I get lots of space and limit the risk of accidents due so congestion. After just 3-400 m I saw a guy who had fallen over and hurt his foot, poor fellow tried to run but after 2k I met him on his way limping back. The route was very nice, out and backs along the sea, so met the faster runners and got to see parts of Rhodes town I hadn't seen before. First turn back was after 5 km, which ment half way was when we got back to the start area to head out the other way. At half way I started to feel affected by the heat and the lack of sleep, my tumy was not very happy but I could carry on running. I was on for a 2:30-finish for a long way but I knew it would be tough in these warm conditions.

The course went by our hotel at around 12 km, so my friend kindly waited there for me with cold juice, crisps and water. Well needed before the hill that came around 13 km. There were a lot of water stations and with bottles so you could carry them with you, but I don't like to run with things in my hands, it affects how I run. So generally I drank some, cooled down my head and cap with some and threw the rest away. 

I had to walk parts of the hill, I knew it was my only chance to preserve some energy and don't hit the wall. It was also one of the few parts of the course where there was shade, so that was nice. Tried to get some time back in the down hill that came after, but it was so warm here, and no cooling wind at all. It felt like this part went on forever, the turning point just never came. Still I kept the pace pretty good here, trying to stay as close to or below 7:00 min/km as possible. Still I had to take on that hill again and with 18 km in your legs, that's not easy. It was a bit easier this way though and I didn't have to walk as much. After that it was only down hill and flat left, so I tried to go for it!
Km 20 went by in 6:24 min/km and km 21 in 6:40, but it wasn't enough this day so I finished in 2:32:01. Under the circumstances a very good time! And I managed my second goal, not to be lapped by the marathon winner. He was about 5 mins behind me. =) 

A different start to the holiday, but a lovey one. We had a really good week after that, it was a bit pre-season so no crowded beaches, no crowded restaurants, just a great time to be there. I managed 2 more runs there, a 6 km distance run in an average pace of 6:24 min/km! Don't know what that came from haha. Then that weeks tempo run which was 10x200 m, and I found me an ancient stadium to do them in. Amazing! Another amazing thing was the views on the way back to the hotel. =) 

We traveled back home on Saturday night, landed in Sweden at 5 am Sunday, so another very tired day. After a few hours sleep I decided to go for a run, just to stay awake haha. The heat wave had come to us by then so could carry on running in just shorts and vest, not a normal thing in Sweden in early May. 

One of the best training weeks I had, work takes up too much of your time in my opinion, holiday is better. But since work is the reason I can go on holiday, I guess I should stay there anyway. =) 

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