Source: Runner 451

Following up on my recent publication on the lessons I learned from running, I am happy to publish this article after participating in my first half marathon in Rome, Italy, on March 3, 2024. Last year, I decided to sign up for the RomaOstia half marathon. As I mentioned in the previous article, I have been participating in running events for the last three years. So, after running up to 10 km, I finally set out to run my first half marathon.
I have been dreaming of running a half marathon since 2014, when I first started running, and realized how much I love this sport. Recently, my dream came true, and I was able to participate in a real half marathon. I am still filled with excitement and want to share my experience at this fantastic event. Adding to this, it was my first time running outside of France. Alhamdulillah, it was an incredible experience!
The RomaOstia half-marathon has been a significant event for running enthusiasts globally for almost half a century. This year, about 10 thousand people from all over the world participated in this event.

Every year, thousands of people from different ages and backgrounds come together to run, showing their love and passion for this sport. Despite facing a minor health setback last year, I used my medical leave to reflect on my health, lifestyle, and choices. The moment I learned about the half marathon in Rome, I knew I had to be a part of it. The RomaOstia half marathon was incredibly well-organized. It started from the south of Rome in Eur towards the coastal district of Ostia, with breathtaking sea views.
I ran a total distance of 21.1 Km, which included a long highway stretch that felt like forever.

However, I kept myself motivated by reminding myself that I would see the sea at the finish line. In fact, I did! The organization of the race was excellent; the Italian Red Cross was available throughout the entire race distance, and the Police were also present to ensure a smooth process. The race had a time limit of 3 hours and 30 minutes. Nonetheless, I finished in 3 hours and 23 minutes. I tracked my time during the first 5 Km, the 10 Km, and 15 Km marks to ensure I managed my timing well.

I spent almost five months preparing for a race. During that time, I managed my work schedule around my running schedule. I set aside time for each race to prepare myself physically. The preparation process was rewarding and helped me during the actual event. Although I consider myself a slow runner, I learned to focus on keeping a stable and consistent pace.

I knew that the most important thing was to keep running, no matter what. Even when I started feeling physical pain in my legs after 13 km, I realized that stopping to walk hurt more than running. So, I decided to push through the pain and focus on maintaining a good rhythm. This strategy helped while taking it 1 km at a time until the finish line at Ostia. Looking back on the Roma-Ostia Half Marathon, I’ll always remember it as an unforgettable experience that I’m grateful and happy to have had.