In a taxi by 6AM with Pierre (our neighbor who also runs) and at Gwanghamun by 6:20AM, followed by 2 hours of waiting in the cold rain. Not good planning on our part, but my fellow runners will know that the Onofrays prefer to be early to races...nerves are already working usually. Don't need traffic jams, porta-potty lines and crowds adding to the nerves.
We met up with the other Seoul Flyers, bought our 2,000 KRW ponchos from the ajimas selling them everywhere...and proceeded to wait for the start. Here are a few of us prepping (in our own ways) for the start of the race.
And...we were off...
Mike was an awesome supporter, and jumped on and off the subway to catch me and some of the other Seoul Flyers along the route. For those of you who know Seoul a bit, we start up and Gwanghamun and end down at Jamsil Stadium south of the river. We go back and forth along the Cheongycheong River, head east again and pass Children's grand park, then past Seoul Forest Park, across the river, circle around Jamsil and finish in the stadium...and they make you run the whole track in the stadium...brutal!
Here is me and some other notables along the route a bit.
Overall, I am happy with the Marathon, although I am currently on the injured list. I was on track for an awesome PR of a 4:10 Marathon for the first 2/3 of the race, but about 30K, I fell apart...legs tightened up, knees throbbed, (I swear some little efl was stabbing me in the knee with a pen constantly...bugger!) and overall...lost lots of time walking a bit, stretching and just cursing the rain. But, I finished in a grand time of 4:29 and was happy to finish and see Mike there!
This was a my first International Marathon and third overall. Chuncheon Marathon is in the fall here in Seoul, so maybe there is still a chance for that PR!