The recent Sydney marathon fielded two very important people in amongst the thousands of participants: Bionda Hiensch in the half marathon, and Roger Hanney in the full marathon. Both have type 1 diabetes. These are fantastic accomplishments for anyone, but still, sometimes things don’t work out exactly the way you hoped. Despite all the plans and preparation, you can wake up and just not have the legs for that day. We have all been there. Roger has kindly offered to share his experience with us:
This T1D’s Sydney Marathon, 2010.
By Roger Hanney
Marathon-running’s really the only way to travel 42.2km, but the real adventure takes place in inner space. Type 1 for close to 3 years now, I finished my second Sydney Marathon last weekend underwhelmed by the outcome – disappointed in fact.
Afterward, in the gear collection zone, I hooked up with a seriously fast friend who’d pulled out when he was placed about 20th out of 3,000 runners with barely 6km to go. For the first time ever he’d used anti-blister powder. So, of course, his foot had blistered like never before. Funnily enough, he’d DNFed and come away smiling. I’d done the exact opposite.
Then we caught up with Isaac Serem – a lovely Kenyan dude who’d just run his first full marathon. The only thing I got right the whole day was predicting that he’d win, having watched him effortlessly pace 62-second 400-metre repeats for about 20 minutes the previous week. Of the three of us, he was the only one walking normally, despite having run the hardest. Also funny.
Yep – after running for three and a half hours, many things seem funny.
Rog puts in the hard yards ...
We swapped stories, with Isaac having the least to say. This is usually the giveaway within a group of distance runners. The one who says nothing will usually kick everybody else’s ass.
Anyway, I was pretty non-committal on the whole “how’d you go?” thing. Genuinely, I was bummed. Of the 4 road marathons I’ve run in the last 14 months, this was the first to go slower than the one before it.
My goal had been to maintain a pace that would finish close to 3:23:00 and at the very least creep under 3:30:00 by averaging anything less than 5 minutes per kilometre. Up to the 26km mark everything was working well enough. I’d even taken a minute for a ‘natural’ behind a tree and walked 2 minutes to chug a whole Gatorade without inhaling it, while still staying with the pace I was setting.
Heading out of Centennial Park and back down toward Oxford Street, I hit my only real diabetic hiccup for the day.
Roger Hanney is pondering running’s truly sadistic test: The Bruny Island Ultra-Marathon in December ...