I'm feeling gakkari, or disappointment, although a somewhat expected miss of my coveted 40 minute mark that I had broken 2 years ago on the same course. Despite a nagging lower back injury and wet weather, I thought I had a chance to crack 40 minutes as I had run a swift 41:50 at the Murakami “duathlon” last month.
So when I lined up at the start line in the under 40 minute group with Stuart and Chad, I decided to go out at just under 4 minute pace. The first 2k turned out to be too ambitious. I did a 3:50 first k, and a 3:58 2nd k, but knew I was in trouble as I was already feeling very winded and uneasy. I hoped the pain would end soon, but it was still 8k away! The next 3k was disastrous as I faded badly to 4:05, than 2k at 4:09 pace, and came through the 5k at 20:10.
There was still a glimmer of hope that I could somehow maintain a 4 minute pace, but that was soon shattered at 6-8k, when I did a 2 times 4:20 splits or so. Those hills took their toll on me and it felt like I was spinning my tires on the wet asphalt. After the 8k point I tried to pick it up as I could see those speed demons Paddy and Jay heading for the stadium. I pumped faster but just didn’t have the legs. I think I did a 4:05 9k and just under 4 minutes for the final k, which is usually much faster. Final time was 41:32, so my second split was a shocking 21:21 after a 20:11 first split. Almost a full 2 minutes slower than 2 years ago at Edogawa.
Omedeto to Brett, Jay, Fabrizio, and Rie for podium finishes, and thanks to Jay for organizing the wild and crazy party at El Torito (excellent service thanks to our gun ho ordering style). Still feeling woozy from that one...