There have been few marathons in the last couple of years that have exercised opinions or attracted as much attention as Nikes breaking2 attempt at Monza last Saturday. Rarely does a marathon result register in the mainstream media in the same way that Eliud Kipchoge’s 2:00:24 did.
One of the most interesting things about it though is not how close he came to breaking that elusive 2 hour barrier rather that it divided opinion so much amongst runners.
Ask most runners what they think about how how some of the biggest marathons in the world, London or Boston or were raced or won this year they probably wouldn’t have an answer. Ask them who had stood on the top step of the podium and they also couldn’t tell you.
Ask them what their thoughts were on Nikes Breaking2 attempt and you are almost guaranteed to get an answer that is either gushing excitement at how close they came to making history or a negative reaction that it was just a marketing stunt, wasn’t a real marathon or that the use of pacers or some other factor was all wrong and against the ethos of the sport. Either way most have an opinion and are at least aware that it took place.
A race normally warrants a race report but in this instance it doesn’t. When we started training properly for the Boston Marathon I thought that a low 3 hour finish was possible. Especially after my half marathon on New Years eve where I was quite a bit fitter than expected at that stage. In fact Ais commented afterwards that she had no idea where I had pulled that run out of given our lack of training in the preceding month and if Ais was impressed then I was happy that I was starting out in reasonably good shape.
Anyway the training went well for the next couple of months and for the first time in a long time I felt like it was working well, the body was handling and absorbing the increasing load. I was seeing constant steady improvements as the year progressed. At some point along the journey my aim became to go sub 3 which I haven’t done in a number of years. The numbers I was seeing in training indicated that I was close and we reckoned that with a good day I had a really good chance of a finish time starting with a 2. Read More
This is one of my favourite races (that’s probably got a lot to do with the fact that it’s one of my very few race wins back in 2013) That was three years ago though and I was in better shape back then so this time around I didn’t have any real expectations going into it. That being said there’s always a little part of you that hopes that no one fast will show up, or if they do maybe they’ll get lost or slip into the canal or something… Anyway that’s enough of a glimpse into the nasty side of my mind. Lets move on.
I’m flattened after just three late nights and three days of over eating at the weekend and that’s without any alcohol. I’ve always been a bit of a lightweight when it comes to getting enough sleep. I’m like a 4 year old, I can’t function without my normal 8 hours. Anyway this week will see us hit the city streets to run the Dublin marathon. We will do it as a training run. That will make it by far the longest training run I’ll have ever done. It’ll be interesting to see how we recover after it. The plan is to run between 3:30-3:40 and hopefully that’s easy enough that we’re back training by Tuesday or Wednesday.
Read on to see how it goes.