Euroloppet: (Marxa Beret) & Vuokatti Hiihto

IMG_0005_2This year I had planned 2 Euroloppet Marathons: Marxa Beret and Vuokatti Hiihto. Marxa Beret is the largest ski marathon in Spain, it takes place at the end of January/beginning of February in north Spain near the Andorra’s and French border. Vuokatti Hiihto takes place in northern Finland mid/late March.

Marxa Beret

Continue reading

Book Review: Red Notice by Bill Browder (10/10)

Red_Notice_book_coverRed Notice: A True Story of High Finance, Murder, and One Man’s Fight for Justice is a story of a Stanford graduate who against all common sense went to work in Eastern Europe just after the Berlin Wall came down in 1989. First he worked for Boston Consulting Group and had his first project in Poland, then transferred to Salomon Brothers where he landed another project in Russia. This is an amazing story of how he sensed the business opportunities in Russia, built up his business, Hermitage Capital and how he fought oligarchs and corruption. The story is written in such a thrilling way that you can’t put the book down until you have reached the end and learned his story, and also the story of his lawyer, the late Sergei Magnitsky, and about how the corruption in modern Russia works. Continue reading

New personal best in Marathon

diplomIt has been exactly a week since I ran a new personal best in marathon distance in SEB Tallinn Marathon.

I was not going to write a blog post because I was not satisfied with the result. Yes, 3:23:15 is indeed 19 minutes better than my previous personal best of 3:42 run in Antwerp two years ago. But the thing is, this was the first time I really *tried* to run a good time. In 2012 when I made an easy jog of 3:46 in Copenhagen I was capable of doing a 3:05-3:10 marathon (derived from my 39:03 10k and 1:27:28 half-marathon), but since I did not, this is still just on paper and 3:23:15 is the reality. Nothing to be ashamed of, for sure, but not a result that I would volunteer to brag about, either.

Four weeks earlier in Rakvere Ööjooks I felt great. Continue reading

Hike 2014 – Matkatee Lõunarada

yldpiltIn the beginning there were supposed to be 5 of us. Then, as the annual hike got closer, people started to drop off. Some for the medical reasons, some for the fitness reasons. A few days before the start it was clear – it would be just me and Matti this time.

In 2012 we (me and Tiimar back then) cycled through the Trail the Estonia’s (Matkatee) northern track in 3,5 days (read here and here). In 2013 me, Matti and Oskar walked through the first 80 km of the northen track in 3 days (read here). This time, the plan was ambitious – cycle the recently-opened Trail the Estonia’s (Matkatee) southern track, start in Vara (by first cycling from Tartu to Vara, 20km) and finish at the end of the track, Ähijärve, cycling from Ähijärve to Valka 35km to get to the train back Tartu – averaging 120km per day. What made this plan even more ambitious, was the fact that the southern Estonia is quite hilly and with all the equipment all those uphills would be demanding. Continue reading

My first podium in 4 years – 2nd place in I Ida-Virumaa Staadionimaraton half-marathon!

All the food...I didn't eat

All the food I didn’t eat

The inaugural Ida-Virumaa Staadionimaraton was held this Tuesday in Iisaku.

The event was special because according to the organizers, this is the first time there’s ever a marathon event being held in a stadium in Estonia. So when I heard about the event and learned there’s also a half-marathon distance, I was intrigued to participate. Sure, my physical condition is not optimal at the moment, but with the contestant limit of 40 (there’s only so many people you can fit in a 400-metre track to run tens and tens of laps) for two distances combined there should be reasonable enough chances for a podium finish for me. In the running events in Estonia I usually finish among the first 10-20% of the contestants. These bigger events always have the elite participating, but in an inaugural event with limited number of competitors and event time during the work week it could be possible.

So I registered and a few days before the event took a look at the starting list to find out about the competition. Continue reading

Book Review: The Lola Papers by Amy Marxkors

lola_papersAmy Marxkors’ “The Lola Papers” is a story of the author transforming into a serious runner. It is a non-fiction book written in a fiction style, spiced with humour. All of this is neatly packaged into a easy to read and entertaining style, with some insights for wannabe runners.

Amy is a writer. She starts running and asks a coach to help her with preparation to her first marathon. The coach agrees and the book follows her way to her first marathon. It tells about the insecurities she has, about the friendships she makes on the way, about ups and downs of running and her training regime.

When I started the book, Continue reading