Red carpet

20131027-185044.jpg
This picture is as much as you get from the red carpet. Unfortunately not much. But let me assure you, it was GREAT! My running buddy Michael disappeared, I did not tell him about my tradition of taking bad quality pics not only from the start but also the finish. That’s why you see only me grinning. But we ran and finished the marathon together, which was a cool experience. And we managed to get exactly the same time: 4:04:59. A bit slower than my last marathons, but strangely it does not feel one bit easier to run a little bit slower. I thought I could use this as a test for approaching ultras: reserving energy by running slower. Did not work, but anyway Frankfurt was a great experience and I will figure out the right ultra approach an other time πŸ™‚

Es geht looohos!!!

20131027-102954.jpg
The title is some kind of German and I am not sure how to translate it. But the important thing is, my running buddy Michael and I made it to the start line. In the background you see the Messeturm. This is we’re we will hopefully come back to in about 4 hours. See you at the finish line (on the red carpet inside the Festhalle)!

At Frankfurt Festhalle

20131026-191512.jpg
Tomorrow I am running Frankfurt, the 8th out if my 12 planned marathons for 2013. My first impression from collecting the bib, having some pasta and seeing the Frankfurt Festhalle (festival hall) where we will finish? It’s gonna be awesome! A lot if music, party and my running buddy Michael (the bloke next to me on the picture) says, tomorrow there will be a red carpet towards the finish line. Running on a red carpet? A first for me. But not for Michael. He did it last year and tested the ground. The fact that he runs it again speaks for Frankfurt. He actually wants to run it 10 times and enter the club and get a lifetime race number. How cool is that? So I better stick to him tomorrow, he seems to know what he is doing.

And back

20131020-152601.jpg
I am back in the stadium, the atmosphere is buzzing and great. Crossed the finish line about 3 hours and 40/45 minutes later. Not quite sure, because my run keeper stopped working and I had to restart at kilometer 6. But the run was awesome, absolutely loved it. Best thing is to enter the Olympic Stadium with a little something left in your legs to do a sprintish finish. Makes you feel a bit like a real athlete πŸ™‚

In the Stadium

20131020-150904.jpg
I am in the Olympic Stadium from Amsterdam now. In 1928 the Olympics were hosted here I was told. The building does not look that old. The marathon will start from here any minute. Will I be able to do it? It is the first time I am doing two marathons on two weekends in a row.

I AMsterdam

20131020-091721.jpg
It starts in 20 minutes and I have not even seen the start line yet. I am lost in a sea of oversized (tall) people, hoping they are all fellow runners of the Amsterdam Marathon. When it comes to crowd management the organisers are not winning an award. But hey, the crowd is still moving slowly towards a sign “ONLY MARATHON ATHLETES”, there are still 15 minutes left and I try not to be too OCD about taking start line pictures. Don’t panic, it will be alright.

Time flies

20131018-233139.jpg
I am on the plane to Amsterdam. There is a nice quote on KLM’s paper napkins: Time flies, but you are the pilot. I like that. My inner pilot is getting me to the 7th marathon this year and my 11th in total. Somehow can’t believe that they are that many. Time truly flies…

Budapest Marathon Recap

20131013-202052.jpg
Ok, this time I shared my most intimate thoughts from the start line. I did document it half for myself; it is hard to prove to yourself how bad the thinking was when all went well. I know this from other runs. And Budapest? No exception, it went very well indeed. Let’s revisit my thoughts from before the race: The silly vest turned out to be just right. Especially during the second half of the race, when it got warmer, it kept me noticeably cool. My arms were all fine, the Vaseline seems to have done its job just right. And I did not need the the loo after all. Perfect run so to say. And the time was around 3:40. Better than Warsaw and with a bit of luck I might even have done my personal best. But for that I have to wait for the official results. Still very please how well it went, PB or not πŸ™‚

Thoughts from the start line

20131013-091422.jpg
It starts in 30 minutes – I need to take a picture from the start line – what is the creepy guy doing in the background – why is he filming (!) me – while I am taking pictures of myself (!!) – embarrassing – good that there was a red cap in my race pack – it’s supposed to be warm – 25 degrees – and sunny – that why I am thankful about the cap – it’s even colour coordinated with my shoes – wearing this silly vest – seemed to be a good idea first, because of the high temperature – but now my hydration pack feels sore under my arms – need to vas them up – silly idea wearing the vest – never change anything from the usual on race day – first rule – I did not follow it – will I get away with it? – best case scenario: I ease into the run and it will be fine – worst case scenario: hours of torture – I need the loo – I don’t need the loo – what if I need the loo during the race – it will be alright – hopefully – or maybe not – well nothing I can do now – see you at the finish line!

Budapest Marathon warm-up

I had the whole Saturday to roam through Budapest. Today was supposed to be my rest day though, but how can you rest in a city like this? Budapest is truly stunning. And the weather was great, too, so I walked around more than I wanted to and walking can sometimes feel more tiring than running. But I found a compromise. Budapest is also the home of many thermal baths. I went to one that has outside areas and with 24 degree and sun it felt like summer holiday. The bath itself was also impressive. The Lonely Planet travel guide says it’s like swimming in a church and they are right. Here some pictures:
20131012-220734.jpg
20131012-220755.jpg
Cool, huh? And that’s only the bath, you should see the rest of the city (which I am sure many of you have ;)). Can’t wait for tomorrow when the roads are closed and I am allowed to run through it, passing World Heritage sites and all sorts. Very exciting.