The inaugural Viking Marathon in Waterford on Saturday was my 23rd Marathon (including 5 ultras) and my 7th as a pacer. With 5 marathons under my belt this year alone and the possibility of 3 more pacing gigs, I appear to be slipping into the abyss that is occupied by those who think nothing of running two marathons in one day (and no I'm not referring to a 52 mile ultra) and have to organise their own marathons to feed their addiction. Sure enough the usual suspects were on the start line at the Mall on Saturday morning, with some sharing the early miles with me, slagging each other off and having a bit of craic before falling off the pace as the memory of their most recent ultra or marathon hits their legs - all well capable of running sub 3:30, if only they allowed themselves to recover, their legs in a perpetual state of stress/recovery.
|Hi-Ho Hi-Ho It's off to work we go|
|Enjoying the First Mile|
The course was a mixture of urban and rural roads around the south side of the City before heading out the Cork Road at Mile 9 and south to Tramore at mile 10.5. Unusually for a marathon the mile markers were "miles remaining" as opposed to "miles completed" so anyone with a standard pace band was
fucked left slightly confused as "16 miles remaining" meant you were 10.22 miles into the race for which you had no split time on your pace band. Pacing 3:30 at 8 minute miles wasn't too bad as 16 miles reamining meant 2:08 time remaining, indicating that I should have 1:22 or slightly less on my Garmin .
There were a few drags, particularly the mile or 2 before halfway, where we got a good cheer from the half marathon runners lining up to start just over 15 minutes after we passed through. We slowed the pace going up the drags to even out the effort a little and picked it up slightly on the downhills.
|What time is it? I can't wait around much longer.|