I spent the last few years continuously training for an event. Whether it is a full Ironman, a 70.3 or a marathon, I always had a goal that kept me focused. I have been enjoying the process of training and racing but, at the same time, the mental and physical stress that comes with preparing for a race is huge. It impacts all aspects of life. At some point, the body and mind need some break. This year, and for the first time in many years, I didn’t plan any race other than Seville Marathon last February. And as I failed attempt to run a sub 3 hour marathon in Seville, my motivation to train and race dropped significantly. This led to inconsistency in training and some laisser-aller in nutrition which is definitely not a good combination. As a result, I gained some weight and my performances dropped in both speed and endurance. One day, I decided to get on a scale and measure the damage. I got the confirmation that I was heavier... not a lot of weight but enough to make me understand that this cannot continue. I had this wake up call mid April, since then my training and nutrition got back on track almost instantly. The motivation is now high and the need to race is back. That’s how the 15km Woluwe race find its way to my schedule. It is a local race that starts few hundred meters from my place. Almost all my teammates from Coaching Zone were participating. The race is well organised with distances going from 400m for kids to 25km trail. The 15km course is challenging as it included all the major climbs in the Woluwe-Saint-Lambert. I didn’t specifically train for this event, it was more like a tempo run as part of my training. I was tired from the training load of the previous days and I didn’t know what to expect. My goal was to run as fast as I can on my tired legs.
I ran the first 5km just over 20 minutes. It is a good pace but I already knew that I wouldn't be able to hold it for the next 10 km. The climbs were really tough for my tired legs and I was slowing down drastically every time the road goes up. The last climb at the 12th kilometre almost made me walk. The final 2km are fast but I wasn’t able to push the pace. I finished in 1h04:28 (4’15”/km). It was a good training session, in preparation of Brussels 20km next Sunday.