Ale be fine!

Posted on: 28 Sep 2015

I’m not sure going to a boozy wedding held in a brewery with food served from a fish and chip van qualifies as recommended marathon prep, but that’s how I spent my last weekend before embarking on my second attempt at 26.2 miles!


That said, it was a fab wedding and hey, we all have to have a blowout and enjoy our lives once in a while.  I even ran from the hotel back to the wedding venue the following morning to collect my car, so it can’t have been that bad a hangover.


Apart from this little blip, my training for the Chester marathon has been going really well.  I’ve followed a 16 week programme pretty much to the letter, having not missed a single run and only come up short on target distances a handful of times.


Total distance trained so far has been 385 miles – considerably less than London where nerves made me extend the 16 week programme to one lasting over 30!  In hindsight I probably overdid it for London, plus I was starting Chester training from a much higher fitness level.


What’s been encouraging has been my pacing.  My goal this Sunday for Chester is to hit four hours and that means getting through half distance in around 1h52 and 20 miles in under three hours, ready to hang on for grim death over the last 10k at 10min mile pace. 


In each of my last three long runs, the half marathon split has been right on target.  And in my final 20 mile long run, I clocked a very satisfying 2h54.  All the signs look good!


I’m also more confident with my fuelling strategy this time around and hopefully that means no repeat of the wall which made the final few miles of London a pretty unpleasant experience. 


Hard to believe there’s now less than a week to go.  I’m swapping running for eating and planning out my meals and snacks to get suitably ‘carbed’ up.  I have to say it’s been nice to have a low-key build up to this event, just concentrating on the miles and enjoying some really pleasant summer morning runs.


I’ve even managed to shave nearly a minute and a half off my 10k PB, which is now 46m33s.   


There will be no rest after Sunday though.  Via work, I’ve agreed to coordinate a team of nine runners in the Great Birmingham Run on 18 October – a half marathon – for our charity of the year, which is a provider of bereavement support called Edward’s Trust.



We’re fundraising collectively, so much less pressure than London and the only target is the one we’ve set ourselves.  It’s exciting to be part of it and slightly crazy to think there are first time half marathoners in that group turning to ME for advice???  Imagine that three years ago when I nervously stepped up to try 13.1miles myself for the first time (or four years ago when I couldn’t run two miles without walking).


Anyway, enough typing – I’ve got pasta to cook and flapjack to bake!  Wish me luck for Sunday and I’ll let you know if I managed to hit the magical four hour mark.







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