Friday, September 27, 2013


I had no need to be nervous, scared, or even excited about this race... But I was, with 63 marathon under the belt and nothing riding on this race I don't know why I felt like a novice or some-one gunning for a time...

OK maybe I was a little worried due to the fact I had raced a 39km trail race the week before, and would the 4 hours on the mountain still be in my legs... Well yes of course it would be in my legs, but this marathon is flat and I am have got a couple of OK weeks of training under the belt.

I joined the crowds and pushed to the front (42.2km is far enough as it is), there was only seeding for 50 elite athletes! I looked around for my friends, but couldn't see any of them and ended up chatting to a Belgium guy. He was looking for the pacing flags... wanting a sub 3 I told him there wouldn't be any flags for that pace, but to hang on me... I wanted 88 for the first half, and then I would take it from there, he was in...

I didn't like the new start as we had trees to dodge on our way to the road, but without the stress of racing I was still in one piece as we hit the road. It didn't take long for a couple of other guys to join me... The early km were passing by without any trouble and after the stormy weather for the week (Snow on Table Mountain on Friday) the weather gods had lied on a perfect day!

We passed 10km in 41:19 and my wife had now joined us... No she wasn't running, she was on her bike having cycled from home to watch the race unfold. As much as I would love her to follow my race, she just waved and headed on to see how her other friends were doing. At about 12km she was back to let us know that the race behind us was going fine...

15km 62:19, I looked around and we were all still happy and I was feeling good, but for a marathon that is early days. That was really the end of our happy little bus... We lost a lady who had been running with us and then I noticed that half the guys were no longer there!!!

Half way in 88:16 was easy for me, but I think the 2 guys with me didn't like the idea of no rest. Dawn joined us again but didn't stay long, just long enough to ask if I was still OK... I was feeling great and with the near perfect weather I half wish I had been in shape to give it horns. 20-25 was our slowest 5km split 21:18. Dawn was now cycling with us and for about 500m we chatted about her plans for the rest of the race... No she had to head home soon as we were having people round for lunch and she still had a lot to do. One last time she sped off to see the lead ladies.

My running parnters were now starting to take strain, so I left them... But as I picked up the pace (from 4:15 to 4:00) my stomach spoke to me!!! After a 90sec pitstop I was back!!!

The running was easy and the km ticked by 30-35 19:50, only 7 km to go... ok I forgot about the .2!!! 28:48.

Finishing in 2h54:24 had been easy, last weeks race hadn't taken it out of my legs, but I bet if the route had had any hills I would be singing a different tune! And if I had set off at 4's from the gun I think my legs wouldn't have played ball...

Now with that behind me, it's time to look forward and start to race again, I want a fast half before the year is out, and if that comes easys I might give Winelands marathon a bit of a go...


  1. I think it's perfectly reasonable to have nerves before a marathon no matter how many marathons you've done before. 42.2k is a long way and a lot can happen. You had a great race. Just wondering how the Belgian guy went.

    1. Don't know, didn't see him after 21, but the other 2 guys ran 2h58 and 3h02.

  2. Nice. Here in the US we have sub 3 pacers, 1 runs to halfway then another from halfway! Cheating i call it :)

  3. Awesome coach. You are an inspiration. You killed it!

  4. Congrats on a great race!!! You are a machine. :)

  5. Hello Coach Dion
    I followed the link to this blog from DCrainmaker.
    THanks to your post over there I gladly heard there is a marathon on the 23rd of November in Cape Town. I will be there the week of the 25th and would change my plane tickets to run that one! I could not find a web site or anything related to this marathon. All the links point towards the Two Oceans or the Cape Town city marathon of September you just raced, but nothing in November…
    can you give me a hint? thanks!

  6. Ok sorry, the marathon I was thinking about is Winelands, and it is on the 16th of November. I must be getting old timers thinking it was later in the month.

    The web sight to look at is for running in cape town.

    Hope this helps.