A 90km road race between Pietermaritzburg and Durban. 2023 was a ‘down’ year (the race changes direction each year). The race started with over 16,000 runners. Temperature conditions were around 8c at the start line warming up to mid 20s at the finish.
(Hour 7 athlete Caroline Turner on the 2023 Comrades Marathon start line).
7:14:35, 35th Female
Training volume in build-up:
With only 5 weeks between the London Marathon and Comrades, I built mileage back up, incorporating more longer runs while maintaining speed work, with peak week at 90 miles. Unfortunately, I did miss a couple of final training sessions as some small niggles had crept in.
Training intensity distribution:
20% easy, 60% steady, 20% tempo effort.
Long runs and Tempo runs, testing eating/ hydration plan and heat acclimation.
My planned race strategy was to start conservatively and run negative splits, taking advantage of the largely downhill final third. However, my plan flipped once I started, and I went out hard thinking I would take advantage of my strengths on the uphills. This change in plan backfired, as I went out too hard.
1 SIS Beta Fuel gel & 250ml of SIS Beta Energy drink every 10km
In addition to the Beta Energy drink, I picked up additional water on the route in the second half of the race as the temperature climbed.
To have faith in the plan and stick to it, rather than getting caught up in the race, being overly concerned with what others around me are doing and so going off too hard.
(Hour 7 athlete Caroline Turner with her medal after the race).