Monday, October 22, 2012

The PR that didn't happen ... I am NOT Amsterdam

Long story short, you were all wrong (or most of you) and you don't know how sorry I am about it. Yesterday's Amsterdam Marathon was my toughest race ever. Simple as that. I will try to write a post reflecting what lesson I learnt, but want to share very brief story of what happened.

It was crazy windy, the worst thing for running. Baaaad wind. I started feeling confident, was well at my pace, slowed down in the invisible hills so my heart rate didn't go too up. At around 15th km were we ran out of the city along the river Amstel, I realized that my back hurts. I tried to breathe in it and didn't pay too much attention to it. I hit the half-marathon mark at 1:39:58, I knew by then it wasn't gonna be sub 3:10, but still nice PR if I manage to go for negative splits. This was also the last time I got some energy in my system. I managed to get back in the race, speeding up a little, but then boom. 

I fought it until about mile 18-19. There I admitted that I was gonna finish at slow pace. My back was hurting like hell and I had troubles breathing. Not in the life-endangering way, but I wasn't getting enough oxygen to support my running. I don't really remember what was the first time when I walked. It helped and I could start running again, but between miles 22 and 25 I went through hell. I walked a lot, there were times when I even couldn't walk, I had to bend over to give some rest to my back and catch my breath. I felt like my sports bra was suffocating me - even though it is one I used for many many long runs so I know it was a nonsense. I gave in, went to the sidewalk, turned towards the water pulled down the straps of my top and got rid of the bra and of course put the top back on. Yes, you are reading right, I showed a bit of my chest in the center of Amsterdam, but I didn't care, I was hurting so much ...

Getting rid of the bra helped, but I was getting really cold. I was dressed up for running, not for walking in sweaty clothes ... I managed to start running a little bit again. And then it started to get worse again. I was almost stopping, when my mom and her great friend were cheering me up from the bridge above me. I knew I couldn't stop in front of them, my mom would be crazy scared, so I passed the bridge and continued in very slow running until I was out of their sight. I felt like puking from time to time. I have consumed all my water and was taking it at the refreshment stations but the drinks were really cold and that didn't help either. We were back in the city center, just few kilometers to go. As I was walking, people had enough time to read my name and they were cheering me up. Thank you all for the support! They were so supportive and the picture in my head was, OK, they are cheering me up and I might just puke in front of them any second ... not a nice one. I thought about Paula Radcliffe and her Olympic marathon in Athens 2004 so much. She is my idol, but I didn't think I had to go through her pains :(

I don't know what changed, but I was able to somewhat run the last 2 km, I was happy by then I was gonna make it. I knew I was going to cry just after the finish line. I forbid myself crying before reaching the finish, so basically I had to finish ... And my eyes are tearing up while I am writing this. Official time for my marathon #3: 3:45:03, still almost 20 minutes faster than New York last year, but not the huge PR everyone expected. 

Boston 2013 watch out for me! I will come ready more than ever!

Photos from the marathon day:

... I knew you definitely needed to see at least 3 photos of my legs in the ice bath. This was first time I actually added ice and not used only the coldest water you can get from the tubes. Very strange room service order: tea, warm milk and lot of ice :D

Well deserved bubbly ... the tears were over and I was happy I finished, that is my victory of Amsterdam.

Told you the service at the hotel was just amazing, got the strawberries to congratulate me to my not that grate achievement.

... on the way home after way too much wine - the river was like a mirror, absolutely no wind! Shame on me ...

And what was up with me? It seems that the chest part of my spine is somehow blocked, it still hurts and I am seeing my physiotherapist tomorrow. We are already working on action plan on how to avoid this does not happen again. Honestly, I don't want to feel like that ever again! And I forgot to mention that I puked just after the finish ... Don't worry Zdenek, I went first to the medical tent to wash my mouth before I hugged you and started crying :)


  1. Stejně jsi frajerka, tahle zkušenost tě akorát posílí

  2. Presne tak. Vydrzela jsi, a to je hlavni. Ses dobra a zamozrejme, ty fotky jsou ovsem velmi zajimavy!:)
    Odpocin a hodne zdaru do dalsich zavodu! 12:)

  3. No slušnej rupanec.... To mě mrzí... Fandili jsme, drželi pěsti a ty sis to takhle hezky práskla.. Ale na druhou stranu, tohle z tebe udělá daleko silnějšího běžce, než PB :) Regeneruj a spřádej plány :) Drž se, aloha :)

  4. Jsi dobrá, co dobrá - jsi hodně silná, že jsi s tím prostě nesekla, jak by to udělala spousta běžců, když by se tolik vychýlila od svého vysněného času. Dej se brzy do kupy...

  5. Posílena negativním zážítkem ... už teď jsi silnější a lepší pro příští maraton. Zrovna čtu My story so far - takže zmínka o Paule, taky trefně napsaná.))))

  6. "Dojít" maraton za 3:45 je neméně heroické, než si udělat ten kýžený osobák.
    PS: I don't worry :)

  7. souhlasim, moc Te obdivuju zes dokoncila!! Dej se brzy doporadku!

  8. Barborka: Přesně jak píší ostatní. Posílí tě to, natrénovala jsi "mental toughness" a příště to bude s vyřešenými zády úžasné.

  9. To je sila! Jsi velka bojovnice, zes to dotahla do cile, o tom to je. Vitr tady na podzim bejva fakt hnusnej, takze casto supluje kopce. Drz se!

  10. Fakt tě obdivuju, že si dokončila... A i tak gratulace, hlavně se dej dohromady a příště to bude o to lepší. Každá zkušenost se počítá a takováhle dvojnásob! Drž se! :)

  11. Ne muselo to byt strasny. Kdyz i tebe to takhle vzalo a musela jsi jit... Ale jak pise Zdenek, i tak je to naprosto heroicky vykon! Respekt!