It was 8:30am when we arrived in Bushy Park Saturday 1 October 2016. What a beautiful morning blue sky, light mist and the sun is shinning down on us. I bit cold mind you! The forecast, I've checked the previous night on the BBC app heavy rain 12,13,14,15.. I was thinking great, we (me and Lisa) may stay dry most of the planned 22 miles run. Anyway, we were soaked by mile 6 on the Portsmouth Road heading into Kingston town centre...! That's another long run ticked off.
I have ran two sub 3 hours marathon before both in Virgin London Marathon in 2014 (2:58: 35) and 2016 (2:56:23). Rewind a few years back I have tried and failed in 3:02, 3:03, 3:05 and 3:09!! and in 2015 in 3:00:48 then spent the next half hour in the St John's Ambulance tent, I walked the last 600 metres of shame to the finish line, that's how I felt for the next few months, thinking where I have gone so wrong! I have trained and done similar mileage feeling confident at the start, 1:27 half way, then disaster strike after mile 25, I can't remember much it was all a fuzz to be honest. The picture of my face says it all. Anyway as you can see I bounce back and ran a PB by over 2 minutes this year. How did I do it and can I do it again...?
I think I am mentally and physically strong enough to deal with the gremlins that tells my body to give up at mile 22. I still don't known the secret, even experienced elite runners hit the wall all the same. I supposed age is not on my side, just turned 50 and into category Vet50, maybe I'd win something? Last year I came 14th place in The Beachy Head Marathon 3:24 after a long spell of PF! I am aiming to better my time but is somewhat down to the condition and weather on that day. I can only wish for dry and sunny.
Depends what you follow, some says quality is better then quantity when come to running mileage. Personally, I have tried both! I find running up to 65-70 weeks works for me, which includes intervals, tempo, easy and long run. Finding time to fit 22 miler is never easy doing shift work, but needs must and is a form of stress release for me.
Today 10 October 2016, The VLM magazine arrived through post with the enclosed acceptance form for my good for age entry for next year race. I had chilli and rice for lunch and sweet potatoes both left overs from the weekend but delicious still to eat. We take turns to cook my partner Lisa and I, mostly chicken, veg, rice, pasta, risotto with salmon, chilli and wraps. Our pre race favourite meal, is roast chicken with mash potatoes, that fuelled me for my VLM PB this year! Ok need to burn today's lunch off. The plan today is 8 miles run through the hilly woods... will let you know how I got on later.
The woods behind our house offers some of the scenic routes, how lucky are we. 8 mile run went ok but struggled to go sub 7:30 pace! Forward the next day, same route and average 6:58min/mi I zoomed down those hills @5:14 and keeping upright!