Tokyo Marathon outcome: 3:36:28 net time

I never thought I could be at the starting line of the Tokyo Marathon 2012 after getting a cold with strong fever bouts from Thursday night, barely 3 days away. On Friday night the fever was so strong that left me feeling so sick on Saturday morning and could only manage to get out of bed at about 1pm. I was therefore sure if I get another fever bout on Saturday night, I couldn’t make it on Sunday.

Luck was on my side as far as fever was concerned, as on Saturday night there was no fever except for a bit of headache and Nausea. I kept psyching myself up for the race, preparing my stuff. The preparation included things like pinning the tag on my running gear, attaching the chip to my shoe, setting up the fluids that I needed and so on. I didn’t want to entertain the thought that I couldn’t run despite feeling sick.

On the Big day I woke up at 5:30 after about 6 hours sleep. I went to the convenience store and got two onigiris with some tea. I like Onigiris and Jasmine tea during races. They are comfortable on my stomach. When I got to the running area, most of the areas were quite crowded. Long queues at public toilets.  I avoided such crowded places and entered one of the expensive hotel buildings in the vicinity.  Many runners don’t go to such places.  I found vacant toilets at 53 floor, relieved myself and changed.  From the building I just headed to the luggage truck and deposited my stuff.

This time I was put in Block D.   I was supposed to be in block A, but my Rikuren Association membership expired at the beginning of this year.  During the application it was alright I believe, so technically, I lost the special status.  That was really annoying, but good I got the chance.

  I entered the running area few minutes before the gates closed and fortunately there were very few people manning the gates, so no one was telling me where to go.  When I looked around I saw the B block runners just infront of me, I skipped the barrier and melted in the B group: a great relief!  Soon I met a Namban guy and we started a bit of chit-chat, then another Namban guy who had the chance to run 6 consecutive Tokyo Marathons joined us, then he pushed a bit ahead of us as he was shooting for a sub 3hrs.

I was still coughing and feeling sick before the gun, so I opted to go conservatively.  I had my cellphone with me, watching the leaders as I ran the first 7 kilometres, before my battery went dead.  This time I wasn’t in a rush, I learnt from my past mistake. I took enough time at water points, stopping literally in some occasions to make sure I drunk. Also I had my own energy drink in my runner’s pocket.  I planned to take one at about 15km, another one at 25km area,  and the last one at over 35km point.

Everything went well, I didn’t feel hungry at 25km point like in my previous race, nor did I feel any calf muscles pain. I was well fueled so I didn’t pick any Bananas on the offing. However, when approaching 37km mark I started getting blurred vision, when I look ahead I couldn’t focus on anyone infront of me.  So I opted to look up at buildings to get my focus back.   At 37km point I took my last energy drink, but the blurry vision continued so I opted to go slow. At this point I could imagine how Yuki Kawauchi feels before collapsing.   I knew for sure if I push I might collapse, but that was mainly due to the cold that I had and the medications that I took before the race I guess.

In addition, if we look back, I only had a 30.8 km longest run, I was sure the pain might start after 35km point.  Find the splits below:


スプリット (ネットタイム)
Split (Net Time)
5km 00:27:54 (0:26:11) 0:26:11 09:37:54
10km 00:53:03 (0:51:20) 0:25:09 10:03:03
15km 01:18:24 (1:16:41) 0:25:21 10:28:24
20km 01:42:49 (1:41:06) 0:24:25 10:52:49
25km 02:07:17 (2:05:34) 0:24:28 11:17:17
30km 02:32:38 (2:30:55) 0:25:21 11:42:38
35km 02:58:15 (2:56:32) 0:25:37 12:08:15
40km 03:26:37 (3:24:54) 0:28:22 12:36:37
Finish 03:38:11 (3:36:28) 0:11:34 12:48:11

Week 8; Day 3: Oda Field( 22k Total)

After the half Marathon last Sunday, my legs have been sore. So I didn’t run on Monday and Tuesday. Today (a Wednesday), I went to Oda Field to do some intervals with Namban Rengo guys.

Although the first plan was to do intervals, I doubted if my muscles can survive speed just after the half marathon. So when I got to Oda, I decided to do a normal long training.

I arrived at Oda field at about 17:45, then changed. When I got on the field, it was about 6pm. I wanted to do a really long track run before the Namban guys arrived at about 7pm. I could manage doing 40 laps before they arrived.

When the group arrived my muscles were quite tense, so I decided to join group B as the interval time in group B is not so ambitious and good for my sore muscles.

The interval training today was  six  1k or 1000 metres lap with a 200 m jog.

I don’t remember what was the intervals goal time, but I remember following the time keeper for the first 1000k and it felt very slow. So I decided to follow the fast runners in group B who seem to be ahead of the time keeper.

Luckily one of the fast guys on B team was actually an A team guy. It worked so well for me coz we could really push each other.

I think the B team time is supposed to be over 4 minutes per  1000 metres but we averaged about 3:50 and the last interval lap…I am not sure but I bet it was in the 3:20s or 3:30s as my partner put the hammer down from the start and I was really finding it hard to catch up, and when I kicked it was all I have. I was like, if he has anything left, then he will get the last one, but luckily I got it.

Yokohama Half Marathon results

Before talking of the results, I would like to say that the Yokohama half Marathon course is really good and the weather was great lats Sunday. One thing is the course is not 100% flat as many claim. There are small hills mainly going on bridges and getting on some kind of a fly over. Also towards the end there is a bit of an ascent. Anyway, the ascents are not so tough to affect someone training.

Yesterday I checked the Runnet website for the results and  it was a bit surprising  to see that I was in the top 200. The results were as follows:

Gross time 1:30:36

Net time 1:30:12

For those who don’t understand the difference. Runners normally focus on net time. Net time is the running time minus the wasted time taken before crossing the starting line. So my actual time is 1:30:12

Yokohama Marathon gave only two splits unfortunately. That is the 10k split and the final split. My splits time were as follows:

10k 42:57 and the last part 47:15

There were two kinds of ranking but I can’t tell you exactly what they mean. My first ranking was 179 out of 2298. I guess these were the general half marathon participants.

My second ranking was 294 out of 2823. I guess this includes all half marathon runners (Elite and General).

Anyway, the outcome was great!

Week 7; Day 7: Yokohama Half Marathon Race(My second half Marathon)

This comes a bit late.

The Half Marathon course was really great. I lined up with the masses behind the banner saying 1hr 15 to 1hr 30 minutes guys. I was about 20 metres from the board and about 100 or so metres from the starting line.

As the gun went it took a few seconds before starting a crawling jog. I wasn’t in the mood to rush things so I just followed the masses at a crawling pace. I passed the first Km mark in 4hrs 40 minutes and 5km mark in about 22 minutes.

Things got a bit interesting after the 6 k mark as the crowd started stringing out.

I tried to focus on myself to avoid following others pace, but it was difficult. A number of times I found myself competing with some guys. I reached 7k in 30 minutes which was 5 minutes better than my first Half Marathon in 2008 (Setagaya Half Marathon).

When I glanced at my watch at 10k it was about 42 minutes 50 seconds, which was quite good.

To make things short, I crossed the line at 1hr 30 minutes and 30 something seconds. I don’t know why I couldn’t go under 1 hr 30 minutes as I passed the 20km mark at about 1hr 25 minutes.

Anyway, I was hoping to run somewhere between 1hr 30 and 1 hr 35 min. So 1 hr 30 is satisfactory.


Yokohama Half Marathon


I got the Yokohama race pack this morning for a special price of ¥3,000 instead of ¥5,000. Thanks Gemma for setting this up!

I had a chance to look at the Yokohama marathon website (, and it says the course is quite flat – good news. The race starts from Yamashita park (山下公園) on Sunday morning and end at the Yamashita park’s ship(山下ふ山下ふ頭).

The first 6 kilometres the course takes runners to the lonely Yokohama dockyard, a good way to kill time counting containers. One interesting spot to check out here might be the Yokohama Symbol tower which marks the turning point towards the 7 km mark.

Just after the 10km mark, the course go through Kamomemachi before making a U- turn at 12.7km point which serves as a wheel chair finishing point. The course the more or lesson trace itself back to the the big ship at Yamashita park.

Wish me luck!

Wilson Kipketer the former 800m WR holder ran the NY Marathon 2011

Wilson Kipketer originally a Kenyan turned Danish and the former 800m WR holder which stood for 13 years(1:41,11) and recently lost it to David Rudisha of Kenya, ran ING NY Marathon for charity purposes.

Based on his past credentials, I was curious to see what he could run. In comparison with my first Marathon, his splits for the first half were not so different from mine, but he was quite consistent in the second half. Find his splits below(Courtesy of NYC Marathon website).

He ran through at 7:40 mile pace and his splits from 35k point are as follows;

35k – 2:40:21

40k- 3:07:35

For my second Marathon, I would like to better Kipketer’s time of 3:20:48


5 km 10 km 15 km 20 km 13.1 mi 25 km 30 km 35 km 40 km
03:20:48 00:22:21 00:43:38 01:04:45 01:25:40 01:30:14 01:47:25 02:14:41 02:40:21 03:07:35

Tokyo Marathon 2012 training

Days leading to  the Whistle

The Last time I took part in a race this year is probably July. From November of last year to July this year I took part in a stint of 5k and 10k races, before turning my attention to futsal for a bit and then to motorbikes.  Since I got my Motorbike license this August, the regular version in Japan, and got my Fully customed Honda Fusion SE ( The CN 250 in the US), the bike has kept me off my feet for many months.  The wake up whistle was blown when I received the Tokyo Marathon 2012 acceptance e-mail lastweek!

What is the plan?

I looked at Hal Higdons’ advanced Marathon plan( and saw that it requires about 18 weeks. By last week the countdown on Tokyo Marathon was 4 months 13 days, that’s few days short of Higdon’s schedule.  Plus, I am not sure I understand all the language used in Higdon’s explanations. It’s a little difficult for me to figure out how to run Tempo runs, easy runs and race pace runs, plus Higdon’s scedule has terms like 3 x Hill, 6 x Hill and so forth that I can’t fathom.

The simplest plan I came up with is  running atleast 5 days a week. My work schedule is so different from average workers. I have no weekends, and work morning and evening shifts, leaving a big chunk of time in the day. In other words, I can only run on weekdays which is fine with me as long as I put in the mileage. In the 4 months, my goal is to do an average of 1200 Kilometres, that’s an average of 300 Kilometres a month.

Base building

From my 2009 and 2010 injury experience, I know better not to jump into long runs, and after being off my feet for a while I would need a solid base building. So last Thursday I put on my running gear and try a slow 10K…