While this category
to those unfamiliar with running might at first appear strangely
under-ambitious, when you consider the first person to run a marathon actually
died (while that blog entry will come
later, for the moment don’t worry - he hadn’t done any training, didn’t hydrate
and went off too fast) then finishing a marathon is an exceptional
achievement in itself.
know those who fall into this category from comments such as: ‘Jesus!’ ‘26.2 miles!’ ‘What was I thinking?!’,
‘Do many people die running these things?’, ‘I just hope I finish’ and an
internet search history that includes ‘how
long is a marathon?’, ‘marathon deaths 2010 - 2016’ and ‘marathons gone wrong’.
The “enjoying the event/city” category:
and some people run it just to ‘enjoy’ the event and scenery!? The answer is
yes. These individuals tend to have already ran several marathons and due to
either age, injury or an absence of hard training this time around, are not
chasing a personal best time. Instead, they are happy to take it easier than
they might normally do and enjoy what is a wonderfully amiable occasion, except
for the final few miles because no matter how easy you take it, the final few
miles always sting.
know those who fall into this category from comments such as: ‘What am I doing this weekend? Oh, just
heading to Rome. Want to see the Trevi Fountain, the Coliseum and run a
marathon’, ‘I’ll just take it easy’, ‘I wonder what Athens is like in
November?’, ‘that’s a beautiful bridge’, and an internet search history
that includes ‘aerlingus.com’, ‘Helsinki
weather July’ and ‘restaurants in
The “personal best” category: While
there is an overlap with the first category to create a special “I hope I finish and under 4 and a half
hours” category of first or second time runners, the “personal best”
category generally consists of people who have ran at least one marathon and
are chasing a time. It doesn’t matter where on the spectrum that time is from a
world record 2 hours 2 minutes to somewhere slightly over 5, the desire,
dreams, hopes and fears are all very similar.
This is the
category I fall under and my ambition is sub 3. I wrote 2.59.59 on a runner’s
board in Berlin back in 2008 in my second marathon and fell short at 3.15. I’ve
(usually) gotten closer in the half dozen marathons I’ve ran since but at 3.03.20
I am still 200 seconds short of it. This year though I am going to break it. At
least that’s the plan. That’s always the plan.
know those who fall into this category from comments such as: ‘I’ve just done three days on so it’s a rest
day tomorrow’, ‘Sorry, I can’t make it out this weekend, I’m breaking my new
runners in’, ‘I heard that beetroot juice is good with couscous?’, ‘Ice with a
dash of water please’, and an internet search history that includes ‘kale and quinoa recipes’, ‘carb loading’
and ‘how long should you spend in an
ice-bath before you can forget ever having children’.
20.4 K - 1 hr 42 - Long Run
With Tom & James we did a long leisurely loop around
the Trim 10 mile course with the town field to finish. Weather ideal, weren’t
slaves to the watch and I came across the nicest athletic neighbour who leaves
water out for runners-by! Class.