on Apr.04, 2011, under searching for John Galt...
Yesterday, Fabien reminded me of a great example of how one person’s positive influence had a massive impact on the whole…
10+ years ago…. I opened a sales office for Marcus Evans in Nice, France in a small “serviced office.”
At that time there was only one “serviced office” location in Nice, and it was near the airport.
One room with 12 desks and 12 phones … one window and nothing else.
Within two training schools, Adam Fletcher and I filled the office with young, hungry recruits from the UK.
The office was broken up into 3 teams of 4.
Each team was good, but one team was the best: E-Espana.
It was August 2000, and these brand new recruits were working on an event to be hosted in Spain (E-Espana) the following April.
All 4 were brand new to sales, with no sales experience whatsoever….
Their first month (August) — each of them sold at least 79,000 euro.
Fabien Faure sold 159,900 euro that month, his first month in sales.
According to Fabien, it started the 3rd week when he came into the office at 8am and noticed a bus ticket which had been left on his desk by Richard McBride, one of the guys on his team.
The bus ticket was stamped: 5:15 am.
Fabien looked at Richard who smiled and said to him ”glad you could make it…” and he continued to research.
Fabien was the first person on this team to sell, and according to him, he didn’t want to lose to Richard, so the next day he – himself got to the office by 6am only to discover Richard was already in the office.
Within a few days, the entire team of 4 began coming to the office by 6am …
and Richard is the one who developed, led and fostered this teams brilliant ethic and success.
Fabien remembers how it turned into a game to see who would be the first person in the office, and often one of the team was in the office by 5:15 am just to be the first one.
I am not exaggerating.
The perfect team.
When one was losing focus, the others would act like coaches helping get the person back on track.
After a few months, I sent Richard and Fabien to the Chicago office for a week of training – honestly, it was just to give them an incentive to go to America.
On the 2nd day in the Chicago office, Richard made more than 200 sales calls which shatter the Chicago office record.
Back in Nice, Richard and Team Espana had a great positive impact on the office.
Within 2 months, the tiny Nice office of just 12 people became the number 2 revenue generating office in the company – easily, doing more business than several offices with 50 – 100+ sales people.
It was a perfect machine.
Although the other teams didnt come in the office as early as Team Espana, everyone worked with the same drive -in my opinion because of Richard.
Fabien Faure is great today, and I suggest it all began back in 2000 working with Richard McBride or was it John Galt??
The world we live in today is different to the one in 2000, however, the power of positive influence still remains the same.
on Sep.12, 2010, under ode to...
(this is a blog I did in July, but I want to repost it today)
Sophie and I were in Amsterdam for two days in the beginning of last week …. (easy 90 minute direct flight from Nice)
Our last night there, we had dinner with a close friend of ours who wanted to (as he put it) “share someone special with you guys” and to introduce us to his best friend since childhood, Henry.
Our friend is in his late 50’s so I assume his friend is also in his late 50s or early 60s.
The dinner was at our friends home which is an hour gorgeous drive outside Amsterdam.
Henry met us at the door when we arrived, and treated Sophie and I as if we were his special guests.
He was extremely well dressed, the best dressed out of everyone. He walked with a cane, but he walked so smoothly, I wondered if he really needed the cane or not.
I sat next to him at dinner and spent most of the evening with him because he had a lot of interest in discussing my vegan diet, ironman training and my other adventures, especially my swim across the English channel.
Throughout the evening he smiled and radiated happiness – he didnt say anything which was remotely negative.
I assumed by the way he carried himself he was in great health – to be honest, I never even considered his health.
Henry made us all laugh with his jokes and happy go lucky demeanor during the dinner.
We talked a lot about my swim across the English channel – he showed so much interest in my swim that I invited him to come on the crew boat which will go with me as I attempt the swim in September.
But he said with a big grin on his face: “I might have an important trip to take before” and pretended to look through his diary which he had in his sports jacket pocket…. Henry and our friend laughed a lot at this joke. I didn’t understand what was so funny and assumed he just didn’t want to go.
After dinner, we all sat around talking until around midnight – maybe Sophie and I got back to our hotel by 1:30am … we talked about Henry the entire drive back to the hotel.
I really looked forward to seeing him again.
Early yesterday morning… around 6 am, Giovanna (my 6 year old) and I walked down to the boulangerie (baker) near my home in La Turbie to get fresh bread for breakfast.
The weather was perfect – but the first thing the woman behind the counter said to me, even before the perfunctory “bonjour” was: ”it’s hot….”
I never pay attention to this senesless negativity, ordered my bread, paid and left … on the walk back home Giovanna asked me: ”papa why did that woman say it’s hot … it’s not hot at all. It’s still dark outside.”
(in French its much funnier)
I explained to Giovanna that most probably the woman had nothing else to say, and to fill the space she says “it’s hot.”
Giovanna mumbled to herself something in French about the woman being ridiculous… (even a 6 year old understands)
Maybe 15 minutes later ….
After Gio and I had made our toast together and taken Sophie her breakfast, I sat down in my chair with my coffee & toast and logged onto my computer which opened with facebook.
I do not promote my blog on facebook, thus I am not sure if and how many of the 101 friends I have on FB read this blog …so I am not sure whose feelings I might be hurting, but….
The first several “status updates” by various friends, most of whom I have not seen since high school, are all negative comments or ramblings.
a few examples:
“I don’t want to go to work tomorrow!!!”
“ I ate too much ice cream!”
“I woke up in the middle of the night and could not fall back to sleep WTF”
“my kids have to go to the doctor tomorrow…”
“I feel sick, maybe I have food poisoning?”
As I am wadding through the muck of moaning, negativity … thinking to myself: “what is the use of telling your friends you dont want to go to work…”??? Sophie comes down stairs with her mobile phone in her hand and tells me with a dazed look on her face: “Henry died last night.”
My first response was “who is Henry?” … but as soon as the question came out, I remembered he’s the nice man we had dinner with less than a week ago.
A man whom I just enjoyed a dinner with less than 6 days ago died???
We later learned that Henry had terminal cancer and knew he was going to die very soon –but he remained a beacon of positivity focused on the good in life, so positive and upbeat — we now understand what our friend meant by “I want to share someone special with you.”
Sophie went back up stairs and I looked back down at my laptop …. and went back to reading through all the whining, moaning…. status updates by various friends of mine.
Then I thought of my grandparents….
My Grandmother is 88 years old and my Granddad is 93 years old. In my entire life, I have never once heard them say a negative word — never once have I heard them say “its hot” “i am tired” “i dont feel good” etc. I have never heard them complain or say a negative word about anyone or anything. Surely, their positivity is why they have lived such long fullfilled lives.
Perfectly stoic and focused on the positives in life, very much like Henry.
Henry had terminal cancer — Instead of spending the rest of his time feeling sorry for himself, he made the most of it – and remained positive until the end, celebrating life.
It puts things into a perspective.
… meeting someone who knows he has terminal cancer; knows he is going to die very soon, but remains positive and upbeat until the end (doesn’t even tell you he is sick)….at least for me, this person is very inspiring.
The world we live in today…
all the moaning, complaining, feel sorry for ourselves platforms …
Seriously — notice today how many people bitch about something; how many people focus on something negative vs how many people focus on something positive.
Why has the world become this way?
Why do so many people go through life feeling sorry for themselves?
…..unfortunately, I didn’t ask Henry if he knew where John Galt is living.
on Jul.02, 2010, under make it happen
I finished 2030 out of 2558 people …. that’s a lot of people who finished before me.
Although I have friends who are professional ironman competitors, a friend of mine who Mario is the coach of has won two ironman this year …I also have two friends who did the EPIC5, 5 ironman in 75 hours.
I don’t pretend to be good at this stuff…I started biking and training for ironman’s about a year ago. When I do an ironman, I’m just a fat white guy trying to survive.
Nice was my 2nd ironman in less than 4 months …
to be honest, what drove me to do Nice was because my coach, Mario Huys told me after IM New Zealand that Nice IM is “probably too difficult for you to do this year.”
Mario considers Nice to be the 2nd hardest IM bike course (the hardest being Lanzarotte)
Nice IM was fully booked …but I chased and chased until they finally accepted me, and I got registered.
My training had been ok – but not great because I have been traveling a lot for work.
I lost another 5 kilo after IMNZ so I got my weight down to about 200 lbs. (the lightest I have been since my senior year in high school)
Mentally I was ready.
The day before the Nice ironman, Sophie and my 6 year old daughter went with me to register and walk around the expo.
I overheard Sophie whisper nervously to one of her friends, “everyone looks like a professional….”
I laughed and told her that I had noticed the exact same thing – then I told her how at ironman New Zealand, more people looked like me than looked like a Roman warrior … but at ironman France (Nice) more people looked like a Roman warrior than looked like me…
I saw only a few men who were as big (heavy) or bigger (heavier)than me.
Over lunch the Saturday before the IM, Mario explained to us how the European’s are very serious about triathlons and especially the Nice ironman… “most of the competitors will be racing aggressively.”
I was most nervous about the swim.
I swam low 55 minutes at IMNZ back in March (which is a respectable time), but I got run over, punched, pulled and kicked for majority of that miserable swim.
1000-1200 people competed at IMNZ ….
Nice ironman has 2,600 people registered …. and the swim is notorious for being aggressive and rough.
Two days before the race, my friend, one of the organizers of IMFR told me about a man last year who nearly drowned because he was run over by hundreds of people – he had mistakenly gotten in the front of the line on the swim.
This man had flown from America to do the race, but within 15 minutes of his ironman starting, he was finished.
Only someone who has swum in an ironman can understand the power and mess of 2,600 people all swimming at once … and I admit, this is the part of IMFR that I was most concerned about; ironically, the swim is my strongest area.
The day before the race, when Mario and I set up my bike in the transition area, I was surprised to see how long the transition from the swim to the bike was …. the guide said it was 800 meters once you left the sea and reached the place my bike was set, but it seemed much longer.
Slept maybe 3 hours …
Unlike IMNZ where I stayed at a hotel for a week, I stayed at my home in La Turbie, France (20 minute drive to Nice) which made the race seem less exciting than IMNZ. I didn’t sleep well the night before.
I woke at 3 am the morning of the ironman – showered and shaved – drank a strong coffee, drank 2 liters of water, ate my oatmeal – and tried to get myself pumped up for the day.
The race started at 6:30, but we arrived to Nice around 5am and got to the bike setup by 5:30 – and I placed my water bottles and food onto the bike.
Mario had loaned me his racing wheels, so my bike was fitted with some very fast, expensive wheels.
I have been riding a bike for less than a year – so I am a very slow cyclist, but with my cervelo P3 and Mario’s expensive racing wheels, at least I looked good – surely, I looked ridiculous once I was on the course because I have a fancy, fast bike and I am so slow.
At 6am, I pumped fists with Mario, said goodbye and went down to the beach to get ready for the swim
…. A friend of mine I swam with at university 15 years ago who came out of the water 3rd two years ago at Nice IM emailed me a couple days before and told me to focus on keeping my elbows up … and to fight like madness to hold my place in the water…
The last thing Mario said to me as I pumped his fist was “stop being a pussy and get in the front” … he wanted to see if I could break 50 minutes, but to do so would mean I would have to start in the very front and hammer it from the start.
As I walked down the steps leading to the swim area, something clicked and I said to myself “stop being such a pussy…”
I moved toward the front of the “55 minute” section (the swim had sections lined up together: pro, 55 min, 1 hour, 1:05, etc.)
The faster area was in the middle of the pack with the slower area to the right and left side … this is done so to best organize for 2,600 people to be able to run into the water and swim towards the same red buoy.
I had been a nice guy in New Zealand … I didn’t fight and push on the swim; and consequently got run over ….
I was in the 4th row of the 55 minute section when the gun went off … and within seconds I was in the water fighting, punching and kicking … you don’t really swim for the first few hundred meters because you are touching so many people and I used my 6’5” 200 lbs to keep my position and I swam over people who were front of me ….and kicked my legs like madness to ensure no one pulled me back.
Within a few minutes I was with the front pack of swimmers, and I felt good – much better than I had felt at IMNZ. I sincerely think that I sprinted 1,000 meters … I don’t see how I could have gone any faster.
When I turned at the first buoy, I was in the lead pack of 5 – 10 swimmers, I assumed they were pro and I tried to drag as much as I could off the guy in front of me.
As we swam toward the next buoy – the glare from the sun made it so I could not see in front of me – I would lift my head, but couldn’t see anything because I was blinded by the light …. So I kept swimming and swimming, breathing every stroke … trying to follow the cloud in front of me ….
….. Until I felt a tap on my head – and looked up, it was a race official in a kayak telling me I was swimming off course.
So after my gorgeous swim start, I fucking swam several hundred meters to the left of the course and lost the lead pack….
The swim is two laps … you have to run back on the beach and then back into the water …. the 2nd lap went by uneventful and no one touched my feet or body– finally after 1 hour and a few seconds I finished my swim – I was disappointed when I saw my watch because I thought I had swum much faster than NZ, but I guess I lost a lot of time when I swam off course.
Run to Bike transition
The transition was not as smooth as IMNZ … at IMNZ a friendly woman helped pull off my wetsuit, and it literally took seconds – but this day I had a man who just stood there as I struggled to get my wet suit off my legs … after several minutes, I was at my bike … then I had another long long long walk/run with my bike to where I could get on it and start riding …
As soon as I hooked into my bike and started riding, I got in the TT position and tried to eat, drink and put sun cream on my face … taking advantage of the flat Promenade des Anglais.
This is when the “passing” started.
Within minutes …. What felt like hundreds of people started flying by, passing me …
The Nice bike course is beautiful … but at least for a weak cyclist like me, indescribably difficult.
It seems like the first 70 km is nothing but one massive climb.
I did not pass one single person for easily the first 70km of the bike …. I kept thinking to myself as more and more people passed me “how can there still be people behind me…so many people have passed.”
On the longest hill, which was in the sun and seemed to last forever …
…. probably the toughest part of the bike route, the last 1,000 meters or so of this climb – a group of several men were passing me when a young, hyper active American girl came FLYING by us as if she was going downhill instead of up …she said very excitedly, as if she wasn’t tired at all: “come on guys, you can do it ….go…go…go…”
One man in a thick British accent shouted in a long slow drawl of a voice … in complete seriousness: “Fuuuuck offfff!” and several people laughed – I laughed to myself about this for the rest of the bike ride.
I think it’s worth mentioning that I saw very few women competitors. The organizer told me later that out of 2,600, only 6% were women …
The Pirate Ship of Fools…
I wore a yellow bike jersey with a black skull and cross bones on the front (pirate kit) which was given to me by one of the original pirates, a man named “Candy” … I was the only Pirate doing IMFR this year.
The “pirate ship of fools” or “Pirates” as we are called is a sort of triathlon club in the UK … although some members are serious competitors, to me it seems the main focus of this club is about having fun and achieving together as a group …
In this club, my nickname is “egoman.”
Leading up to the race, I received many emails of support from pirates, nearly all of whom I have never met – even though they don’t know me, they showed me the most interest and support out of everyone in my life except for my wife … many of them even followed my race online – very cool. (thanks Pirate’s!!)
Throughout the race … many people passed me and would shout “come on pirate…” Or make a reference to the “pirates” …
One british man, as he rode by me told me that I was two years late because the PSOF club did Nice in 2008 … and then he mentioned something about them being “drunk and wild.”
I also heard about a pirate smoking a cigarette at the start of the swim two years ago…
Another guy told me about a pirate being photographed smoking a cigarette and drinking a beer during the 112 mile bike ride at another ironman.
I got so much attention in my pirates kit that I sincerely, felt like a celebrity … I was very proud to wear it.
I have only met a few pirates - and that was at IMNZ, but the support of this club is impressive and without question this support helped me finish this race.
Furthermore, because of the original gang of pirates and their challenge and support, I got into doing ironman’s – so I wear my pirate kit with pride.
The bike course (for me) was indescribably difficult – as mentioned before, it seems like the first 60-70 km is a nonstop, never ending climb in the sun …
When I reached the top of the hardest climb, I thought to myself: “ok the hardest part is over…”
80 miles left!!??
within 3 minutes of saying to myself that the hardest part was over, I rode by a sign which said “120 km/80 miles left”
(my polar did not work so I could not track how fast I was going or how many KM I had gone)
80 miles left … is a long time, esp. when one is dead tired.
I rode and rode and rode … each climb (long hill) I came across I would plug away … and then get to the top and go downhill and feel better.
I ate as much as I could, took a salt tablet every hour – and drank as much water as I could get which all played a big part in helping me finish.
“come on, it’s only 6kms!!!”
I thought we had finished all major climbs when we started one …. A smiling French woman on the side of the road cheers: “come on, it’s only 6kms…”
6 kms is not much if you are sitting in a car driving 120 km/h.
6kms is not much if you are in an airplane flying in the sky.
…but when you are on your 100th km of a 180 km bike ride, going up a very steep hill at about 6km/h….6 km is a long painful time.
This is the only part of the ride where I had to stop in the middle of a climb.
(I was so tired, I didn’t even pretend to fix my pedals – like I normally do when I have to stop on my long training climbs)
I just stood there, tried to catch my breath and drank some water…and took 800 mg of Advil. (I had planned to take 4 x 200 mg of Advil at the 160km mark, but I was dead and my legs and back needed all the help I could give them so I took the ibuprofen much earlier)
After a few minutes of standing on the road with my bike at my side … still trying to catch my breath…. some nice guy I didn’t know named “Christophe” rode by and cheered me on and told me to get back on the bike and to keep fighting ….
(later on the run I would see this man collapse and his body go into convulsion and start shaking all over and the ambulance took him away)
Towards the end of the ride, I started to pass several people for the first time …
finally… after 7 hours and 36 minutes (one hour slower than my IMNZ bike split) I finished the 180 km/112 mile bike.
My first thought when I came into the bike transition was “damn that’s a lot of bikes …. “
Seriously, It looked as if there was 2,599 bikes parked in their places … incredible to see how many people had finished the bike before me.
During the bike to run transition at IMNZ, I rushed around to get out as fast as I could … but this day I took my time.
I grabbed my bag, changed my shorts, put sun cream on my face and neck, drank some water and then put on my running shoes.
Absolutely no core strength ….
I lost a lot of weight over the year and I am no longer “chubby” … however, I noticed on the run that I could not hold my stomach in …. so I was running with my gut sticking out.
… I would try to hold me stomach in and have better posture, but I was too tired so my stomach turned into a gut and just hung out.
My stomach muscles were sore for several days after the race.
My goal was to break 5 hours on the marathon and I made a plan to only walk one aid station per lap, and at the half marathon to start to drink flat coke (the run was 4 laps)
Unfortunately, my plan did not go as I expected … not only was I dead tired and hot — the coke was not flat and the gas from it hurt my stomach so I didn’t get the same kinda kick the flat coke gave me in IMNZ.
At the end of the 2nd lap, at the half marathon point ….I saw Sophie which gave me more energy to try and run faster.
I had fantasized all day about my finishers photo and never once during the day considered not finishing.
I saw many people collapse on the run (including two people I saw collapse on the last 20 km of the bike) I saw 11 people pass out, faint or collapse during this race – I didn’t see anything like that in NZ.
The last 5 km of the run was very difficult – I became dizzy and I thought I was going to black out.
Mario was riding a bike next to me and told me to walk (later he told me my face had gone completely white and he thought I would faint)
Finally, after 14 hours and 30 minutes (my goal had been to break 14 hours) I ran through the finishers shute and Giovanna, my 6 year old daughter was waiting and gave me my finisher medal.
Although my time was slow (the winner finished the race 7 minutes before I finished my bike leg) Not to mention the 66 year old man (whom I remember passing me on the bike) who finished under 12 hours and beat me by nearly 3 hours …
I am very satisfied with finishing this ironman.
I will do one more ironman this year, Western Australia IM in December — the secret to my next race is going to be making my core strong….this way I will be able to go faster and look better in the race pictures.
Thank you Sophie for all your support and encouragement and tolerating my waking up at 3am to train, not to mention the Saturdays where you and the girls had to wait for me to finish my training….
And a special thank you to all the Pirate’s who helped me get off my fat ass and start making these challenges happen.
I will turn 40 in January so I am trying to fit in as much adventure challenges as I can this 39th year.
My next challenge is September 3rd when I will attempt to swim across the english channel.
I look forward to painting the pirate skull and cross bones on my chest….and making that challenge happen as a pirate.
on Nov.19, 2009, under other
Over the years, people have asked me “who is the best sales person” I have ever seen… however, what is much more interesting to discuss is who is the best “sales team” I have ever seen …
In my opinion, what makes a good sales person “great” is in large part due to the team or the sales director the person is working with… which leads me into today’s focus …. “the best team that I have ever seen:”
Nice, France 2000 – 2001: Team Espana …. Richard McBride; Marek Ellis; James Lloyd and Fabien Faure …
9 years ago…. I opened an office for my previous company in Nice, France in a “serviced office” as we were waiting for the Monaco office application to process.
In Nice, at least at the time, there was only one “serviced office” location … and it was terrible. One room with 12 desks and 12 phones … one window and nothing else. Filthy.
Within two training schools, we filled the office up and immediately started selling …and within 2 months this tiny office of 12 became the number 2 revenue generating office in the company … it was a perfect machine.
I thought about focusing this entry on those first 12 sales people … probably the best memories I have as a manager was leading the original 12 in that small office in Nice… but I do not want to distract from discussing the best team I have ever seen.
Looking back now … just 9 years ago… although there was the internet … it did not dominate our lives like the net does today. Recruits today seem so different…so much softer … everything, the “greener grass…” or the “next mountain” is always just a click away… constantly teasing us to betray our focus.
It was August in 2000 and these 4 brand new recruits were selling an event to be hosted the following April in Spain “E-Espana” …. and keep in mind, these 4 guys were living in the heart of the South of France in the month of August …
The 4, all brand new to sales, dominated the company in sales because of their focus.
(each one of them sold at least 79,000 euros in August, Fabien sold 159,900 that month…(now a days) we assume its impossible to sell in Spain in August … but these guys made it happen in 2000)
The serviced office itself was terrible … not motivating; not exciting, just old and dirty… however, these guys did not need a “cushy” office, every single day … Richard would lead the team to the office at 6am to lead research and prepare for the day. Richard is the one that developed, led and fostered this teams brilliant ethic and success.
Fabien reminded me that because of Richard coming in at 6am to research, he started to come and ultimately most of that small office started to come in very early …. just because of the influence of one person.
Fabien also mentioned how it turned into a game to see who would be the first person in the office, so often times someone was in the office by 5:30am just to be the first one.
I am not exaggerating these 4 men who were living in the South of France during the best time of year — they would arrive to the office by 6 am every day.
Fabien, at the time was just a young “super” French kid from Lyon … Richard was in his early 20s, British … Marek, mid 20′s … Australian … and James Lloyd was in his mid 30′s … very British…. but it did not matter how old they were or where they came from … they were the perfect team who wanted to be the best.
They worked in a unselfish support team … when one was losing focus, the others would act like coaches helping get the person (most of the time, if I remember correctly, it was Fabien) back onto track.
E-Espana sold out very quickly … and back then, “selling out” meant the event doing close to 1,000,000 euros.
Of course this team of 4 went onto other events that sold out very quickly — they were always the best team in Europe for the company… but I will always remember them as “Team Espana…”
When I transfered everyone to Barcelona … Fabien did not go, but the rest of the team kept on going …. and the team was still successful, but never as great as they were as a team of 4 during those 13 months they were together.
Since I launched this blog … I have received emails from Richard, Marek and James … and of course Fabien, all four are still making it happen … Richard and Marek live in Australia and the two of them have a successful company together … James is the Sales Director of a media giant in the UK … brilliant people …. and I am very proud to have worked with them and its very rewarding to see how successful they have become.
… why did the team work so well together….why did they want success as a team so much?? I am sure it was not for the love of money … reflecting back on those guys they never spent any money on anything …
in my opinion, it was for the “victory” as a team together … and they won.
For certain Richard and the team and their 6 am ritual … had a massive positive influence on the office….and I want to point out that Fabien Faure is great today and I suggest it all began back then … with Richard and team espana, the best team I have ever seen.
The world we live in today is different to the one in 2000, however, the power of positive influence still remains the same.
on May.25, 2009, under other
Weight: 98 kilo
Copenhagen is a gorgeous city.
I arrived very early on saturday, thus I had a good day before the race and visited all around the city. One of my hobbies is food. Saturday night, the night before the race, I was fortunate to eat dinner at “Noma,” rated the “3rd best restaurant in the world” and you must make reservations 3 months in advance. Although, for some reason when I arrived they could not find my reservation in their system, my good friend, Jack Murphy was able to get me a table. I wanted to take Sophie there for dinner at the end of June, but they do not have any availablity before Sept 18th. Jack really worked a miracle for me on getting me a table. (the picture below is not the restaurant – just some cool restaurant I saw)
I will do a blog on “Noma” later this week for the “FND” section of the blog. I have been to a lot of great restaurants, but this one is the best one. The food was great, but what made the evening was the service. The Danish have to be some of the nicest people in the world.
I ran very poorly from the start of the race. My hotel room was very small (the size of a prison cell I imagine) and because of lack of space, I didn’t stretch like I normally do. Although I felt pretty good at the start of the race, I was tight and my body was stuck in the same gear, slow.
The course was beautiful. The day started nice and sunny, but around the 10km mark, it began to rain and became windy, cold and rained for the rest of the race.
Around 18 km, I noticed my ankles were very sore. By 24km they hurt so badly that I had to stop, untied my laces, loosened them and I walked a bit. I have never walked so early in a marathon, but for some reason my ankles hurt so badly, I couldn’t help but walk. A major problem with walking (at least for me) is once you stop running, its very hard to get back into it.
The rest of the race was absolute misery and I walked a lot. My run pace was so slow towards the end that an older woman, probably in her 60′s walked past me as I was running. I am not kidding, I got passed by an old woman who was walking and chatting with a big smile on her face with a young girl riding a bike next to her – at the time she walked passed me, I was running!
I had scheduled myself, and expected to finish within 4:30 minutes or faster, thus I had booked my flight to Nice under the assumption by the 5th hour, I would be in a taxi on the way to the airport. However, by the 5th hour, I was still struggling on the course. Luckily, I managed to catch my flight just in time.
This was my 4th marathon in 7 weeks and my last one for a few months. My training has been mediocre recently, but its not because I am slacking, but after my last marathon, it took me several days to recover, thus I did not run as much as I need to. My training schedule while I was in Dubai was inconsistent.
My friend who has finished 15 IM’s told me he thinks the reason my ankles hurt is because my body is worn out from so much long running over the past 2 months. But I am not sure. The fastest of the 4 marathons was in marseille, 4:33 on the hardest course, with the most hills. I ran at least 18-28km a day right up until 2 days before -so I think my pain yesterday was caused by lack of consistent training the past 2-4 weeks and not stretching before the race.
Many people run much more than I do and dont have problems, and they run much much faster as well … so i need to just keep plugging away, improve my level of training, get myself down to 90 kilo and build my leg strength.
I have about 5 1/2 months of training time before my Ironman in Dec. I have a lot I need to do to get myself in proper shape to ensure I can finish the race and achieve the time I want – therefore, todays race was a good wake up call and showed me how far out of shape I still am.
Although todays race was hell and my time absolute shit, I highly recommend the marathon because of the course and organization. The Danish are very friendly, and its such a gorgeous city. I recommend anyone who has the chance, to go and visit.