running race 4:20:01 31.13 km (8:21 / km) +2413m6:01 / km ahr:169 max:204
Sierre-Zinal 2018: this time things went much much better. I was certainly better prepared, having also raced a longer race 4 weeks ago and just having another year of training in my legs. I went off on the 1500m climb in the beginning with a different attitude than last year, the goal was not to push too hard and have some energy for the rest of the race. Last year I bonked big time after the big climb and lost a lot of time suffering my way through the last 19 km. This year I race exactly the same time to the first aid station (1h30) and also the same time to Chandolin (2hrs), but the feeling was totally different. Felt relaxed and strong, etc. Then I started pushing a bit after Chandolin and felt really good all the way up to the Weisshorn (2000m of climb at this point). I got to Weisshorn at 3h05min, and I knew it took me 1h20 last year to get in the finish, so no chance to run under 4hrs (my secret goal), I was just always about 10min behind to do it. I told myself that 4h10min is also great and I tried to be efficient on the last part. Afterwards it goes up some more and stays flat for a while. Here I had trouble passing people because the trail is small and pretty rocky. I started in the 3rd of 3 waves and I passed people during the entire race. This was a great psychological boost, but I think I lost some time in the last 1/3 of the course, because I couldn't get around people going slower than I wanted to and there were so many people that you couldn't look out ahead to know where to put your feet, so my stride was shorter than I wanted. In the end, during the last 20min of the race I started getting cramps (because of the short stride?) and this slowed me way down. My 4h10min was out the window and I shuffeled into the finish in 4h19min43sec. 26 mins faster than last year! So still very happy with my race. I do however have the goal in my head to run once under 4 hours, but I may take a year or two break from this race. It's really a very tough one!