Running a marathon is challenging but going running at the end of the world… It’s even more! You just to have to get to this place! Everybody already heard about Patagonia but not that much about Torres del Paine. To find it you have to take a world map: find south America, look at the bottom, the last city in Chile, that is too say very far away. Nevertheless, it’s one of the most beautiful place I have ever seen in my all life. When I was there, I was like a child, smiling all the time.
Few days before arriving there, I was leaving the more southern city in the world: Ushuaia. Down there, you really need to make an effort to reach this place, 10 hours from Torres del Paine at least.
But let’s go back to this race : I had a huge breakfast and put pasta in my backpack, I will be ready for tomorrow. The clock rang, I woke up without any problem, everything was ready. I took a shower before leaving, then on my way to the bus I met Zain and Baihui, one American guy and one Chinese girl. We took the bus until the starting point : in the middle of Torres del Paine park.
This bus ride was not as quiet as all races that I saw since I left France. A group of energetic Brazilians decided to sing, dance, and introduce themselves. One thing that I love about Brazil, they are always in a good mood… Unbelievable! And their language, I could listen to them talking all the time!
After this punchy wake up, no need for a coffee or any warm up, I could start right away the marathon. It was still a little bit cold and the sun was only rising up. I thought I was the only French person but no ! I heard someone speaking French. And guess what? Philippe, on his 50’s, ran the same marathon as me in Kilimanjaro one year ago. Unbelievable that we met here and now!
The race started, my hands and toes were like ice. On the next kilometers, it would be fine. After the third kilometer, I could feel again all my bones. I looked around me, it was just amazing! I didn’t believe my eyes, I was at the end of the world and the weather was beautiful! I was taking movies and pictures all around, I wanted to capture this moment to remember.
At the 20th kilometer, my pace was good, I was happy. Then, one hill, I walked to avoid being tired for the rest of the race. Something you should know, I hate running up hill, I rather walk fast. I had already passed two water stops, I was half-way with at least two or three hills more.
Then, I met Laura, Laura, a smiling American girl. I was almost ready to give up on meeting runners along the way I could talk with : Now I could talk! We ran/walked together the biggest hill of all the race. We talked about or travels and running experiences. Others persons joined us… We finally arrived at the top of the hill.
Downhill always gives me more energy, so I continued by myself. Then I learned that we only had 10 kilometers to go. I was jumping all around!
After taking 15 videos more, I passed by the last water stop, this meant 5 kilomters to
go. I passed by one the brazilian women who were on my bus, she looked not very well, I tried to push her so she could keep on. We ran on the last hill and could see the finish line! What an amazing scenery! I arrived after 4h39 with 600 ascending elevation, 7th of my category. I am more than happy not only because of the raking I get but also because it was the first time I did not look all the time my watch. It is an amazing marathon and I was really lucky to run in one of the most beautiful parcs in the world.
If you want to participate to this race go to Patagonian International Marathon
website. The race is taking place end of September. You can run 10k, 21k, 42k or 50k. If you want more detail, feel free to send me an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org