Well I have completed my first marathon, and because it was my first I was guaranteed a PB! I ran it in 04:58:02.
Drove down from County Durham to Bournemouth. It was a bit of an epic drive, we set off at 9am and didn’t get there until 6pm. We did have a couple of longish stops to walk our dogs though. So we had to set up at our campsite in the dark. It was Luna’s (our new dog) first camp, and she was quite scared to start with but Bambi was really good and showed Luna it was all ok.
Heather did the 5k Supernova on Saturday night. So we chilled out at our Tent for most of the day. Heather really enjoyed the race, and I was happy she did it.
Sunday – Race Day
I got up at 6am to get ready and walk the dogs. The campsite was a great location for the start. It was only a 15 minute drive. The start was at the Bournemouth Athletic Stadium. There was plenty of toilets, a café and the baggage area was efficient. All I had for breakfast was 2 KETONE.io bottles of ketogenic sports drink. I had no food. I also had no food or gels throughout the race. Which was important to me.
The actual start area was in Kings Park. This was about a 5 minute walk away. Again plenty of toilets at the start.
Mile 1 – 8
In my head I planned on running 11 minute miles all the way around. 11 minute miles is a pace where I have to slow my natural pace down a little bit. This is hard when you are buzzing in a race environment. I actually ran the first 8 miles at 10 minute mile pace. Faster than I wanted to, but I was feeling great.
The pace started to catch up to me. The heat was starting to take its toll, it was midday now and considering it is October it was bloody hot. I was averaging around 11 minute miles now, however it was not because I was setting the pace. It was all I could do.
This section was my own personal hell, I was really struggling and running 12-13 minute miles. It was just a constant battle not to start walking. There was a surprising amount of people walking, and I sooo wanted to be one of them.
Mile 25 & 26
Suddenly I had a rush of adrenaline and I felt great and ran the last two miles in under 10 minute miles. I think this is what tricks you into doing more marathon’s because I felt pretty decent crossing the finish line. That’s why it was important to write down how bad I felt between mile 17 to 24!!!
I enjoyed the route, the start was easy to get to and it finished in the lower gardens in Bournemouth. There was some boring bits running the streets. However some of it was really beautiful. There was a few more hills than I expected but nothing that I didn’t experience in training. Most of the roads were closed off for us, however I presume they weren’t allowed to shut off the promenade sections. So you had to share it with the general public. However to be fair the public were pretty respectful, and there were plenty of marshals throughout the course to help out.
We had a mega chilled morning, then went for a 3 mile dog walk. This is really good for active recovery. Then had a couple of celebration pints!!! To be fair I wasn’t as stiff as I thought I would be, obviously I could feel it but I wasn’t bed ridden or anything.
Drove home….. booooooo
The over riding emotions were relief and pride. I set out on a journey to run a fat adapted marathon and I achieved it. Ideally I would have like to have ran it maybe 15 minutes quicker but I am really pleased to have broke 5 hours which was what I predicted.
I am taking the rest of October off from running, and will take a couple of weeks to set some new goals. I have a few ideas on areas I could improve on, and I few training tweaks I could do.
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