Maratona di Roma was not a high priority event; but, a must do attraction while living two hours south of Rome. I came into this event with some decent running miles, bike power (on trainer) intervals; and, a 36k swim over 2 days just days before running a marathon. It is safe to say doing 1656 flip turns (pushing off the wall with quads) a few days before running a marathon and not expecting some residual fatigue may have been a slight oversight.
I started almost in the back of the 20,000 person crowd. I wasn't seeded by time in the placement of the group, which turns out to be a pain in the ass if you intend to run a little quickly. Ironman running off the bike is MUCH LESS crowed at the start! My first and second 5k's were my slowest at 24:26 and 24:20.
There was absolutely nowhere to go! I bounced up on curbs, behind dumpsters, around parked cars, but in the end I realized I was just wasting energy and not making any real progress. The roads finally started opening up around 12k. I am always amazed at running races how the 5foot 250lb man is able to be that far ahead of me at 15k into a marathon...or even 30k????
I was well off the pace hitting the half in 1:37 but the third 5 k came right in on pace at 22:10, I blame the traffic. I was ready to fight. I was in total, "I AM THE AMERICAN GLADIATOR!" mode and I am here to kick some ass. Bring on the km's. Stay strong. Get back on pace and wait for your race plan to begin.
Right on the 37km mark, with 3.1miles left...
Veni, Vidi, Vici in Roma...almost!