1st half: 1:58:20
2nd half: 1:55:25
So, so hot! The whole week there has been a heatwave in Stockholm so everyone has constantly been checking the weather prognosis. On the day it was 27-29C in the shade!
Decided to run by heart rate as I was very afraid of the sun. Forgot to setup the watch with a goal time (would have chosen 4 hours given the temp, otherwise 3:30) so didn't feel any time pressure. The only real goal was to finish! Aimed to run under 160bpm and see how I felt later on.
On the startline it was baking hot.The first few kms were pretty crowded but that was nice to avoid running too fast. Although the first 10km was flat, it was unbelievably hot. Lindhagensgatan was like a sauna as the asphalt was super warm. Felt like giving up at 8km and didn't think I had any chance of finishing. Kept working on keeping the heart rate down but that was not easy.
After 10km some clouds appeared and things got a lot easier. By halfway I felt like I was cruising and knew I'd finish barring injury/cramp.
I was still a bit cautious as I knew that 29-34km was very hilly around Söder. When I got to the hill at Londonviadukten it felt like everybody else started walking but I kept on running. I was stopping at every water stop and running through every shower. But by this point it was more to prevent overheating arriving rather than due to already being overheated.
Approaching Västerbron I started to feel cramp building. Took it easier on the legs (although my splits were getting faster and faster somehow) and managed to prevent it from happening. Plenty of sport drink helped.
The last 10km was easy! I just kept getting faster and faster and felt like I had lots left in the tank. I knew that I was going to be under 4 hours and just kept pushing. Liisa and Rory were waiting near the finish but I missed them as I didn't know where they were. I assumed in the stadium but they were outside.
Entering the stadium was such a relief, I had done it! I even had a sprint finish and overtook tons of people on the last 200m. Big negative splits, maybe I could/should have gone out harder? I ended up overtaking 2300 men from 15km onwards!
Will I ever do a marathon again? Probably not, but maybe there'll be a nagging question in my head ... How fast can I run in normal weather?