Until 7 am – 16th of December 2016, my longest run in more than 20 years was my participation in the Pyramiden Lauf 7k race (March 2016).
On that day I decided to participate with Cairo Runners weekly gathering to run for a new challenge for me 8.5K.
On that day a magic moment happened, it’s like breaking a wall or shattering a mental block, I ran very comfortably the whole stretch and making a negative split in each lap.
I went back home thinking, why shouldn’t I sign for the upcoming El Gouna half Marathon ? And I did.
In less than 2 months as you read in my blog I was ready to run my first official Half Marathon. Yes I was running for months and trying to be a regular runner for around 2 years, but I never thought I would cross the 10k so rapidly.
Race night, I woke up 3 hours before the start time and ate 2 bananas and slept again, I was super excited and couldn’t sleep well. It was the big day I have been dreaming about.
6:45 am I was standing in the Abu el Tig El Gouna Piazza, warming up and waiting for the instructions to line up for the start line.
Boom, and the race started, wasn’t feeling in my best shape and I still felt some muscle tightness from my previous exercises.
I tried to keep my pace slow at the start, but I couldn’t as I saw every one passing by, and it ended I ran around 30 to 45 seconds per kilometer faster than my usual pace. I knew it, I read it, but couldn’t apply, never run faster than your pace at the start.
As time passed by, I felt more or less comfortable in my pace, at the 16k, when there was only 5 left, I said to myself it’s time to push more and gain a more faster pace. For an extra 1 k, it felt good passing through runner having this extra energy, then came the expected.
Wind started to blow and a couple of uphill stretches and an extra nagging pain started to hit my usual weak point, the right foot and the pace dropped south.
I tried to apply what I read somewhere before, try to accept the pain as it is part of the journey, and if you succeed to love it, nothing will stop you then. I shouted from pain, I searched for cheering claps and uproar noises to soothe it.
2 kilometers to go, some nice gentlemen from the cheering crowds jogged beside me for encouragement, so I picked some pace.
Last kilometer was running through the marina alone, and it felt like the party was over, no crowds, just a couple of kids and the organizing committee showing you the way to the final stretch for the finish line.
Suddenly you find yourself crossing the finish line and getting the medal for finishing.
It felt Amazing. Thank You CairoRunners