Awesome. Quoting Hannibal Smith "I love it when a plan comes together!".
21 weeks of training with two excellent highlights: 1:39:xx at Egmond, almost untrained and 3:21:47 (official) at the Utrecht Jaarbeurs Marathon 2012. My placing is 27th among my age group and 130 of the total (!).
This actually means 7 minutes less than my wildest calculations. I would have been quite happy with 3:30 - 3:45 (Boston qualifying time). I was actually happily keeping the pace with the 3:45 and the 3:30 pacemakers but I went annoyed by the crowd and the balloon hitting my face.
I loved it. I was able to run almost the whole run without water or fluids which means that I was perfectly hydrated and carb loaded. I hate the idea of running with my hydration backpack, I will better leave it for the next season when I start doing ultras. If I had carried it I would have been able to carry a couple more of gels and make an even better time and the weather today would have allowed it, but I hated just thinking on carrying extra weight.
Another result of the training was that I was able to foresee the moment when I was going to "hit the wall" and stop at a watering hole to refuel. The timing was perfect. My pace went down at the end but I had accumulated enough buffer to reach my goal below 3:30. And as I already said I wouldn't have minded ending at 3:45.
When I finished I was rather hypothermic and extremely confused. During the last miles I almost lost my way a couple of times and I wasn't sure if I was already over the finish line or not so that I kept on sprinting some more yards. I walked to the Jaarbeurs Convention Centre and laid myself down for a good while, my lips were blue and I felt prickling on my tongue. But after a hot coffee, warm fries and an alcohol free beer I was again as new.
Another "injury" that I suffered is a bloody nipple. Again. It's the second time I chafe my nipples in this run! The first time was in 2011 during the Jaarbeurs Half Marathon and then this year. It's like a course set on this place or so, because I never had any issues anywhere else. LOL.
Besides of that I am perfectly fine and ready to run for a PR on the next 10K here in Hilversum!!!
As a said: I love it when plans come together.