Sunday, July 19, 2009

Day 10 (Sunday - 10km Race)

Today was a long day. Woke up at 6am to shower and get my mind together for the 10km race. My teammates Nelson and Adilson were taking part of the Lusophone 10km while I was doing the Oeiras open road race. We had breakfastat the hotel at 7am and then left with the other teams in the athlete bus at 7:30. The race wass approximately a 20-30 minute drive away.

It was very hot today in Lisbon, 93 degrees according to website. The last time I can recall running a 10k in this kind of weather was in Pomona,CA freshman year where I collapsed at the finish to a slowish 35min. Today was not the case though. I felt ready and the weather didn't have any significant impact. I took first in 31:16,not a PR but ranks no.3 (results here) In the Lusophone race Portuguese runner Rui Pedro Silva (PR 28:01, 1:02 HM)) ran 30:14 followed Brasilian Daniel Silva in 30:30 (ran 28:40 at Brasilian champs last month) and Portuguese Ricardo Ribas (PRs 13:39, 28:50) in 30:46. Unfortunately, Nelson did not have a great day as he finished 31:54 and Adilson finished in 32:26.

The race was beautiful with a championship style atmosphere. They had km markers (except I messed up my splits). It included timing vehicles, motorcycles with photographers and video cameras all around the runners as if it was the Tour de France.On the way, there were many people lined up on roads and I noticed many Cape Verdean flags and people cheering us on.

I was also satisfied with the time for now considering I hit the first km in 3:13 and the temperature conditions were not favorable for a 10k race. Strength is key in distance running and it seems like I am slowly getting it back. Today was just another step in the right direction and hopefully many more will come as I start gaining fitness. Fitness is coming a lot faster than I thought as 9 weeks ago, I had not done any running in 2months.

After the race we had a beautiful closing ceremonies with the pasing of the torch to India's Olympic Committee president. India will run the Games in 2013. Icame back to the room and starting soing a lot of packing and then took a semi nap.