Slowly dying by the foot of Fuji

Today, my body knows only pain. Pain, punctuated with agony to keep things interesting. My legs feel like lead pipes, their ability to bend seemingly given up the ghost. My walk is not dissimilar to a robot, with stairs now presenting a major challenge. Yes, these are my rewards for having attempted a half-marathon yesterday.

The Kawaguchi Lake Marathon is held once a year near the foot of Mt Fuji. It’s 44 kilometers (or 27 kilometers) of hell through some absolutely heavenly scenery:

Kawaguchiko marathon

Honestly, at plenty of points along the way, I just wanted to forget about the whole “running” thing, sit down in a deck chair and just admire the view for a while.

Some co-workers were kind enough to invite me along with them, and it was a great weekend.  Around 10 thousand people turned up, and I can understand why it’s such a popular event.  For one, it’s just hitting the tail of autumn, and the leaves are still changing:

Kawaguchiko marathon

Amazingly, some people still had the energy to raise their arms above shoulder height:

Kawaguchiko marathon

There’s nothing like running towards a steaming active volcano:

Kawaguchiko marathon

And let’s not forget the most welcome sight of all:

Kawaguchiko marathon

This was my first attempt at a half-marathon, and if I learned anything, it was that my preparation was woefully inadequate.  Still, it was a great experience, and I’m trying to re-engineer my pain into some sort of feeling of self-satisfaction and accomplishment.

And now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to go and be mercifully immobile for a while.  I may be some time.

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