When I won the bronze medal, it made me really happy, because I didn’t expect to make the podium, and it was Portugal’s first Olympic medal among the female athletes. I started to think that I had four years to prepare myself for Seoul. I started working the day after the Los Angeles marathon, because you can’t prepare for a race in one day. You have to prepare over many years, and I started thinking about Seoul right away. I was ready for the start of the Seoul marathon that was my chance to be an Olympic champion. I was very nervous, like we all are at the start line, that’s normal. At this point we’re in the stadium, we’re all ready for the starting pistol, which is a very exciting time, something we all long for, because that’s what we train for. Now we’re starting, we’re inside the stadium, although at this time there aren’t that many people in the stadium, which is normal because people go out onto the road to applaud and cheer us on. Here I already wanted to start taking control of the race. I knew that at the end, a little more than two hours later, I would be returning to the stadium, but I didn’t know what position I’d be in. I really wanted to be one of the first. The characteristics of Seoul benefited me because it was very hot and humid. We had a slight climb at 30 kilometres and then at 37km mark, but relatively, it was an easy course for a marathon, It was flat. Now I can see myself at 10 kilometres at the water station, it’s fundamental for athletes to go to the water station. Grete Waitz is still with me, and this is the point where we exchanged sponges with each other, sponges full of water to refresh ourselves. It’s amazing because it feels like I’m there, that I’m not watching a video but that I’m actually running, because I remember it like it as if it were today. The moment I tried to pull away from the pack, I was followed by the other runners. The others always reacted, especially Lisa Martin, Katrin Dorre and the Russian, we were always running in a group. At around 30 kilometres it was just Lisa Martin, me and Katrin Dorre. At 37 there was a slight downhill, and that’s where I followed my trainer’s instructions I started running faster, and I managed to pull away a bit. From that point onwards I thought that if nothing happened to me then I would manage to win the race, and they didn’t react at all, they didn’t even try to catch me. I thought that if nothing happened to me I would make it into the stadium in first place, and I would be Olympic champion. Now we’re coming up to 37.5 kilometres, and this is where I pulled away, I’m at 40 kilometres, and there were just 2 to go. Here I’m 1,000 metres from the stadium, I was already out on my own and I was just hoping that nothing would happen to me. Entering the stadium is an unforgettable moment, Here I’m just 400 metres away from being Olympic champion. When I entered the stadium I looked back, I was on my own, and I thought I was close to victory. Now it’s 300 metres, and I’ve already started to see the finish line from the other side. I’m entering the home straight, and I’m going to become Olympic champion. It’s a moment of joy, of happiness, which stays forever in my memory, in my heart, this is something you don’t forget. It was worth all that work. I hope this serves as inspiration for all athletes, everyone who loves running, that they should believe in themselves because I believed and I’m like them, I’m not different, I’m not a superwoman. I’m a simple woman who worked hard, and managed to win with a great passion for what I was doing.