On February 22, 2020, I raced through history. My first 10km and it couldn’t have been in a more powerful place with a greater view. I am talking about the Pyramids Half Marathon taking place at the Great Pyramids of Giza in Egypt.
BUT THIS TIME, IT WAS DIFFERENT!!
I never considered myself a runner. As young, I remember running tracks in the woods and 5km races with my basketball team in Sweden. But as memory recalls, I didn’t really enjoy it. However, this time it was different! This time I had the power of AI technology with me!
Starting working at Optomatica a year ago I got acquainted with one of our developed products for our Swedish partners Racefox. We had developed a real-time digital coach for running and cross-country skiing.
With nice weather, fresh air, music, and Racefox run coach feedback in my ears, I hit the road. What a freeing experience in the midst of all the hectic everyday life it was! I realized then that I could take on another challenge and run through history in the Pyramids Half Marathon. I remember our head of finance at Optomatica, Nabil asking me to join this historic run last year. But last year I wasn’t as fit as I am today. Now, I have been going to the gym every day for the last 5 months, so if I wasn’t fit now I don’t know when I would have been. So, when I got asked again this year I couldn’t say no.
So here I was, 22/02/2020, on this historic day in the middle of one of the remaining seven wonders of the world. Excited and pepped with the rest of the Optomatica team wearing our Optomatica t-shirts, Racefox sensor belts, and stretching before the time of the start gun. And off we went. Thousands of runners started their race whether they had signed up for the 6km, 10km or the 21km the spirit was great. It was even greater once we got a glimpse of the Great Pyramids of Giza. So majestic and so powerful! Some people even stopped to take selfies.
As a deep-tech company developing the latest innovative Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence-driven software, our policy is to always test our own productions. I noticed we had some great runners in the company, and one of them persuade me to join in on their morning weekend runs. I wore my Racefox sensor belt, put on my headphones, and started to run. If you’ve been to Egypt you will know that it can be scary running in the streets with all its traffic. I was also worried about the polluted air. Running in Sweden, I was used to running trails in the forest breathing fresh air. To my surprise, the air that Friday morning was good! Just cold enough and fresh to be able to breathe clearly. The route they had chosen had no traffic as you can always guarantee no major action taking place before Friday prayers.
With my personal AI digital coach in my ears, 1 hour and 9 minutes later I had crossed the finish line. Just 1 minute under my target. I was pleased that I had managed to reach my goal in the short time I had trained for the race. My time was among the top 35 women for my age group. With my medal around my neck and some selfies with the pyramids, I waited for my friends and Optomatica team that had opted for the 21 km to cross the finish line.
With everyone reaching their target, we were pleased and honored to participate in such a great race in such a historic place. Thank you Tri Factory for organizing such a great event. Thank you Optomatica team for convincing me to join! TIll next year, I hope I´ll see you again soon Great Pyramids of Giza!