Graz Marathon 2008

Graz 2008 will be my fourth marathon. In the 18 month since first taking on the challenge of 42.195 km, I have come quite a long way. 23 minutes and 30 seconds that is. As a matter of fact that was my improvement within 12 months – from 3:16:50 hrs in Vienna in April 2007 to 2:53:20 in Linz in April 2008.
Still, it is not about the time you run, is it? Of course, you want to become faster as you go along but if it doesn’t happen it is not supposed to be a drama. My goal for the Graz marathon on October 12, 2008, was around 2:49 hrs. Since I’ve had a really good summer at work, with seminars and marketing projects aplenty, while sticking to my running plan of 110 to 130 ks a week, I haven’t had as much time for recovery at my disposal as I used to have while preparing for the Linz marathon. Thus, I was facing a couple of physical problems due to the heavy intensity I subjected my body to.

While I managed to keep my Achilles’ tendon problems in check thanks to the professional help of Hans Holler, my physician, and Leo Winter, my masseur, I realised that cutting down hours of sleep affected my fitness, which particularly showed in my high speed training runs.

Thus, I have re-adjusted my goal for Graz, which still is ambitious: I am aiming at repeating my performance of Linz 2008. That is running well under 3:00 hrs. Graz is supposed to be a more difficult course than Linz and as the weather forecast suggests, temperatures will be around 15 to 20 °C next Sunday, which will make the race a hot one – something I do not particularly feel comfortable with.

Good news is that Martin Hackl, who accompanied me at the Linz marathon, is going to support me again here in Graz. With unlimited access to my Enervit drinks, AM Sport aminos and a good friend at my side, the marathon will certainly become easier.
In the last few days before the marathon, I hope to find enough sleep to give my body the rest it deserves before such a strenuous effort. Two visits to an infrared sauna, two massages and a lot of sleep are on the agenda and I am confident that I will be ready and fit next Sunday, when heading off around Graz for another great adventure.