This is the second blogpost on my experience at the Two Oceans Marathon. You can find the first post here.
Before we reached the bottom of Chapman’s Peak and started the second half if the race we passed the first food station where they handed us potatoes. I had never tried salted potatoes at a race before, so I skipped them. Which I really regret because my friends told me they were delicious. I had my favourite clif bloks instead to prepare myself for the first of two climbs. And then I came round the corner and saw the ocean.
By that time I could already feel the aches and pains that come with running 42 km, but also the chafing and blisters. I decided to take a longer stop to thoroughly rub them down with my emergency trick: a small tube of Elizabeth Arden 8 hour cream. It turned out to be an absolute life saver as I could continue pain free until the end.
I reached the Marathon Mark at around 4:45:00, which for me felt very slow, but I still hat 14km to go. This inncluded the grueling Constantia’s Neck, the steepest and hardest of all the climbs.
Right at the start of the climb the organizers had set up another food station where they handed us bananas. Timing could not have been better, as I needed the energy. I also could use the steep incline to power walk and eat my way to the top.
From there it was 10km mostly downhill. The mostly was not always, and so I soon found myself power walking up some inclines again. Suddenly the 6:30:00 bus passed me. Not a real bus, but a pace group, headed by a girl called Louise. ( I have no idea why the South Africans call a pace group a bus, but I love the name.)
As this was my goal time I panicked. Was I really too slow? Will I make my goal time?
I decided not to hop onto the bus, but to run ahead of them. At my next selfie stop they caught up with me again. Damn it, I thought, no more selfie stops.
I pushed myself to run faster than Louise, which was quite hard due to the rising heat. With only 2km to go until the Two Oceans Marathon finish line I was fully exposed to the sun. Now I was really happy that I had bought that white hat at the expo.
When I reached the lawn of the University where the last 100m were I could already see Richard waving at me from the VIP area.
Of course he had already finished 1.5 hours earlier and was now enjoying his Sauvignon Blanc.
He handed me his Adidas Runners flag for the last metres.
I finished the Two Oceans Marathon with the biggest smile on my face (and relatively fresh legs) after 6 hours and 26 minutes.
It then took me a while to find the bag pick up zone and to male my way back to the VIP tent. But I made it in time to grab a glass of wine and see the final of the race.
With two minutes to go until the 7 hour cut off time the final sub7 bus arrived, causing the crowds to cheer like crazy. In the last minute people were sprinting towards the finish line to make it in time, and the first ones that did not make it were absolutely devasted.
I could feel their pain. Running 56km and then not finishing and getting a medal is just incredibly sad.
Especially as the Two Oceans Marathon medals are just incredibly nice: every hour the design of the medal changes to gold, silver, sainsbury, bronze and blue.
Even though mine was blue I still felt like a winner.
But I definitely decided on the spot that I would come back to get a bronze one. Because the Two Oceans Marathon is just the most beautiful Marathon in the World!