The Story Behind The Run
We always have self-doubt if you are a high achiever because when we try to go to the next level and there is thought we are not good enough, but that’s okay because that means we are hungry and we are committed to elevating ourselves..
I began my quest to run all the six world major marathons in 2017. After two tries, I got lucky with the Tokyo Marathon 2018, my very first World Major Marathon.
I arrived in Tokyo two days before the race to adapt to the cold weather and cool climate. I enjoyed the first two days touring within Tokyo and heading out to Kawaguchi Lake for some beautiful sights, in particular, the majestic Mount Fuji.
I also ran the 5km Friendship Run that took place a day before the marathon. The ambience was electrifying with people from all over the world dressing up in costumes. There were also activities such as pasting of temporary tattoos, tasting of some Japanese food and tea and performances.
After the Friendship Run, I went to the race expo, which was within walking distance from I was. The queue was very long but it moved quickly. The race expo was buzzing with energy and life. There were so many things to see, do and try. I limited myself to about two hours or I could end up spending a whole day there!
On race day, I got to the entry point and scanned in with a wrist band I collected at the expo. The temperature was very low at 1 degree Celsius. I was wrapped in layers and looked quite ridiculous but I appreciated it. The race began and I removed the clothing as I warmed up. I was impressed with the Japanese at their effort in conservation. There were recycling bins for the clothing that the runners discarded.
I would not consider the course a fast one with several turns. However, the ambience was fantastic, packed with supporters on both sides of the streets, cheering for the runners. We ran through the city street, past iconic places such as the Kaminarimon Sensouji, Tokyo Tower and Tokyo Sky Tree. There were performances along the street, food such as mochi and fruits offered to the runners and hydration was well distributed.
The race ended at Hibiya Park. The walk to the baggage trucks was considerably long but we were quickly given thermal blankets to keep us warm until we collected our bags. I changed into warm clothing at a café nearby and got myself some warm food and drink. I was too cold to enjoy the post-race events. However, I spent the next two days in Tokyo to recover and enjoy more sightseeing and tasting the delicious Japanese food.
For my first world major marathon, the Tokyo marathon left a deep impression. It was very well organised, fuss free, with great support and marvelous ambience. I would do it all over again!