After spending the week in Magdeburg with Julian slaving over a hot MRI scanner I headed to Allgäu on Friday evening. By some sort of miracle I arrived only half an hour late at 12:30 am despite the German train system pulling out all the stops to… ahh… stop me. Katha was no doubt overjoyed to see me when I banged on her door at 1 am.
As it had been two weeks since the Jungfrau Marathon I was starting to feel well overdue for another little jaunt. I therefore had had a bit of a nosey through the race calendar and found the Voralpenmarathon in Kempten. Fantastic. To appeal to the bargain hunters (Kiwis) the organisers had thrown in an extra 20% more marathon bringing the distance to 50.9 km. This has a positive effect on all sorts of important race-quality metrics, such as hours spent suffering per dollar spent; Chris and Greig would be pleased.
Above: I snuck down to Allgäu for the weekend and ran a marathon. Here’s proof that it was in Allgäu.
Before the race on Sunday I had an intensive lazing session with Katha, Franka, and Vero by a lake near Kempten. After successfully burning the backs of my legs it was time to leave. Johanna was kind enough to leave me the key to her flat while she was away for the weekend so after dinner, I left Katha and co. to party the night away and headed off to Johanna’s for an early night.
The weather on race day was quite respectable. At something like 23 degrees it was quite refreshing compared to the Jungfrau Marathon and Inferno Half . Perhaps a little too fresh one might say… I set off at an amble conscious of the fact that I had some bonus kilometres to run at the end of the marathon distance. The route took us up and down through the hills near Kempten. It was quite scenic with forested sections and meadows. It was thankfully not as busy as the Jungfrau Marathon with 157 entries in the 50 km distance.
The race went well and I felt pretty good for the majority of it. At around about 35 km I started to feel a bit sore and there was some premium suffering to be had during the last 10 km. Although the organisers had only extended the race by 20% they had succeeded in increasing the amount of suffering by a disproportionate amount proving that suffering or perhaps sufferage is a function of time and distance.
Anyway, where was I? Oh yes, the ‘fun’ was over after 5:44:02 (h:m:s) and Katha, Franka, and Vero turned up at the finish line to greet me. We hung around for a while before meeting again later in Kempten for an ice cream. By chance I ran into Manu as well and we all ice-creamed together.
I stayed another night at Johanna’s before getting up at 4:30 am and hobbling to the train station to catch my favourite connection back to Freiburg. Amusingly I finished in 8th place in M30 and 90th place overall. A quick flick through the results indicates that there is definitely life after 30 for marathon running.
Above left: My lovely support crew, Katha, Franka, and Vero came to see me at the finish line. Above middle: Yup, it’s definitely gold… definitely… Above right: “Nice, nice.” Katha and I at the finish.
Below: Manu and I in Kempten later in the evening.
Voralpenmarathon Kempten Dst: 50.9 km Time: 5:44:02 Elevation gain: 1250 m
Below: A map of the route and height profile (courtesy race website)