Carinthia Half Marathon – A great weekend with a great run

DSC_8741.JPG The Carinthia Half Marathon served as a test run for my preparation for the Graz Marathon on October 14, 2007. Here is a short account of our two days in Carinthia. You can find the stats of my run at the bottom of the post. DSCF0864.JPG
(Clicking on the images brings you to my Flickr-gallery where you can see more shots from Klagenfurt.)

A lone run is only half as rewarding as running with someone. Sharing the experience with so many fellow runners, I guess, is one of the major reasons why marathons are so popular. So, too, is taking part at such a race only really fulfilling for me if I can share the experience with someone I love. That’s why I was more than happy that Sylvia finally decided to join me to Carinthia, which made this weekend a short holiday for us – and a relaxing and entertaining one. After having Gwendoline checked by the Vet, we embarked on the 1.20 hrs journey to Klagenfurt where I collected my race number at the Half Marathon finish. Later we drove on to our “EUR 29 B&B” in Wernberg, where we opted for a short power nap. DSCF0860.JPG After thunderstorms the night before the cold and cloudy weather made it impossible to go swimming so we went for an extended walk through Velden, the start of the Half Marathon, ate pizza and pasta and later had iced coffee and Espressi in a nice Café at the Seepromenade, enjoying the afternoon at the lake and watching the expensive cars go by on the promenade.

DSCF0883.JPG Later in the evening we caught up with Beate and Christian Kolbl in Pörtschach, had a drink on Monte Carlo Place and a light dinner at Hotel Europa’s nice terrace overlooking the lake. We finished off the entertaining and pleasant evening with palatschinken and ice-cream. Beate and Christian were set to run the Quarter Marathon from Pörtschach to Klagenfurt and we arranged to meet after the race the next morning.

DSC_8717.JPG Sunday morning meant an early waking up as I got up at 05.30 a.m. in order to eat and take my drinks. After a light breakfast, Sylvia brought me to Velden to the Schlosshotel in front of which the start of the Half Marathon from Velden to Klagenfurt would take place. After I had deposited my drinks and clothing, Sylvia went to have another breakfast and I started warming up.

DSC_8720.JPG I chose a slow and tentative start since the day was getting warmer and warmer and my Achilles’ heals were causing a little bit of a problem at first. But after the first couple of kilometers I managed to get into a smooth running rhythm with 4
3.55 to 4.10 minutes per kilometer. I finished the first 10 ks in 0:40.44 with good legs and a heart rate between 162 – 167 beats per minute. After having reached the center of Krumpendorf at about 15 ks, I felt that I had still something to give and rose to a great finish, completing the last 6.1 ks in 23.25 min (3.50 min per kilometer), disrupting the group I was running in. On arrival at the Seebad, with approx. 250 meters to run, we were welcomed by a large crowd of people, lining the sides of the track, giving you a shot of adrenaline right to the heart. Continuing to the finish line is a trance like experience. Afer having crossed the finishing line, you are rewarded with your finishing medal so fast so that you can hardly find time to regain your breath and receive your platic bag with drinks and fruit, which was a welcome refreshment after the exhaustive finish. In the athlete area, I was welcomed by Sylvia, which provided the icing on the delicious experience I had just gone through, still out of breath and a little weak in the knees.
DSC_8743.JPG Now, with my third Half Marathon in my rear-view mirror, I start to appreciate this new life style that I adopted last summer. As my body is now able to cope better and better with the physical challenges of such a run, I can more and more enjoy the rewards that come with this kind of sports: a healthy mind in a healthy body (full with endorphines after a run like this).

But what I appreciate even more is the fact that I can share these moments with Sylvia, who is not a runner but power practices Yoga and meditation. Her presence makes weekends like these so very special to me – thanks Sylvia!

The statistics:
Total time: 1:25.36
Position: 120 (total runners: 3036)
Age-group M-35 position: 34 (total runners in age-group M-35: 493)
14,79 km/h
4,03 min per kilometer

DSC_8748.JPG0-7 ks: 0:28.27
7-14 ks: 0:29.10
14 – 21.1ks: 0:27.59
Average HR: 165
Average temp: 25 °C
Ascent: 40 m
KCal: 1.737

01 k: 04.05 minutes
02 k: 04.04
03 k: 03.54
04 k: 04.02
05 k: 04.11
06 k: 04.13
07 k: 03.57 – 0:28.27
08 k: 04.07
09 k: 04.07
10 k: 04.03 – 0:40.44
11 k: 04.16
12 k: 04.21
13 k: 04.04
14 k: 04.13 – 0:57.37 (07 k – 14 k: 0:29.10)
15 k: 04.10
16 k: 03.44
17 k: 03.55
18 k: 04.07
19 k: 03.59
20 k: 04.15
21.1 k: 03.50 – 1:25.36 (14 k – 21.1 k: 0:27.59)