Tagged: manchester marathon
MemberApril 10, 2019 at 12:56 pm
Every marathon creates its own unique set of memories, and it’s a time where I tend to reflect afterwards what I have learnt and how I feel. I love the marathon as it’s a real test for me and an event where I get to challenge myself.
I heard something very good at the start of the Manchester marathon. Vasos Alexander (the sports guy off Virgin radio who works with Chris Evans) was being interviewed and he said “Dont let your time ruin your time” i.e. we are all so lucky to run and just enjoy and embrace the experience, if you get your desired time then great but if not, enjoy it anyway.
My aim for this marathon was to try and run 3 hours 15. I had trained very hard for this and felt it was definitely possible, given my PB of 3hrs 18. I was determined to also go into this without any excuses, I was injury free, my training had gone well and the weather on the day was perfect. The only thing I needed to remember was to not roll the dice (James Williamson 😊) and go out and run steady and to my plan. I did this and everything went well till mile 20, which as we all know is where the marathon begins!!
I thought I would feel quite strong and able to push on at this point, but the opposite seemed to happen and the last 6 miles ended up being really tough.
What I learnt though is that I don’t give up and don’t give in. Everyone around me was stopping for a bit of a walk, especially at the drinks stations, however , I said to myself “You haven’t trained this hard to stop, you must keep going” and I did, for 6 miles I dug in and kept moving forward. I know in the past I’d have stopped. If I’d have stopped I’d have felt annoyed with myself and I’d have felt I’d let myself down. I have done this in the past, but I know now that I am stronger and I have a better mental approach that kept me going. I knew at mile 22 when the 3.15 pacer easily ran past me, that my goal time was shot, but I told myself that if I wanted a time I would at least be pleased with that I had to keep going and I did and came in at 3hrs 23.
As with any marathon I learnt a lot about myself and, yes I did enjoy it. It was a great weekend with lots of fellow Waverley Harriers there and friends I have made through running and I am proud of what I did. Our club has so many great runners in it and this showed with everyone’s performance on Sunday, Our first club runner came home in 2hr 44 and lead the remaining 8 of us all home in under 3hrs 30!! I turned 50 last year and my time on Sunday qualifies me for Boston, which I might try next year.
This was my 13th marathon and when I started my ambition was always to get under 3hrs 30. 5 years ago I did that for the first time, running Brighton in 3.29. Since then I have done 3.24, 3,18. 3.20 and now 3.23, so I know if I stay focussed on something it will happen and once I nail it, there will be no looking back. I always want to challenge myself and I am realistic that 3.15 is going to be a challenge for me, but you need to set yourself big challenging goals and that’s what I will continue to do.
My message to everyone is this, never give up on your goals, if you commit to it and believe in it then you will do it. You have to train hard and long and the hard work will pay off over time, it’s a marathon not a sprint after all!! Next stop for me now is the New York marathon in November this year and I will be back and focussed as ever on that…….
MemberApril 10, 2019 at 4:19 pm
Great write up Jon and some interesting thoughts. I was watching the Manchester Marathon online and heard Vasos say that at the beginning, it really struck a chord with me. I think we probably do all get too hung up on pace and time. Amazing to have run 13 marathons and great results for all of them. Well done on staying strong, mentally and physically.
MemberApril 10, 2019 at 5:09 pm
You did amazingly well Jon, and I know you train hard and don’t take any nonsense from yourself. You also belong to a very fast club! Our fastest is about 2:45ish but we go beyond the 6’s too. You are very lucky to qualify for Boston, jealous but well deserved.
And it’s true, we focus too much on a time rather than THE time, though if you’re heading out to PB chase, enjoyment generally seems to vanish out of the window (though my fastest 10k was one of my easiest and happiest!)
I’ve no intention of giving up on my sub 4 but sometimes when the injuries keep coming back, I have to re-evaluate what is important to me, and it would be running longevity, and possibly lots of hilly runs, races in different places, and some short fast 5ks or 10ks to get the ticker going… I’m not giving up by any stretch, just a tad realistic going my track record.
Anyway, PMA – sub 4 this coming October (yikes, did I really just say that?)
MemberApril 10, 2019 at 6:49 pm
terrific run and a great write-up, well done!
MemberApril 10, 2019 at 7:38 pm
Thank you for sharing your experience at Manchester Jon, a really enjoyable write up. Seeing your Mara times you have got 3:15:00 in you. I’m sure with your work focus and graft you will get it.
Reading how you say the Mara starts at mile 20, I can agree, even though I have only just recently done my 1st one. That last 6 miles is tough, made me realise you have got to push yourself and believe in yourself. It’s also good to hear a honest account from a runner who’s not knew to running a marathon and a great times, admit he found it hard. Well done again Jon 😁
Boston would be amazing Jon, great opportunity for you.
MemberApril 10, 2019 at 9:48 pm
Very interesting write up Jon. I find the psychology of longer runs fascinating – particularly when the going gets difficult and you can sense a target time slipping away. To date I’ve stuck to HMs, where I’m very driven (sometimes probably excessively so) by my target times. But the issues must be much larger in maras where there’s likely to be an awful lot further to run once you get into physical and/or psychological difficulties.
MemberApril 11, 2019 at 6:24 am
Lovely honest account of your thoughts on this Jon. I had read up on and was prepared for that psychological battle in the last 6 miles and fortunately won. But for me the battle was also about the length of time I needed to be on my feet, fortunately I ignored the rule of long runs being no more than 3.5hrs and trained for longer.
My thoughts like you were ‘I’ve trained for this so I’m finishing’ You did a great job out there and have provided insight into even for experienced runners it’s no picnic in the park, it’s tough but so worth it.
Congratulations on qualifying for Boston and thank you again for your support.
MemberApril 13, 2019 at 6:41 am
Great write up, I ran Manchester last week as my first marathon. No where near as fast but happy with my 5 Hrs 27mins. Already I am thinking I can improve as I feel I can do better. I learnt a lot during training but in the end enjoyed the final run.
Congratulations on qualifying for Boston
AdministratorApril 14, 2019 at 5:00 pm
Brilliant write up Jon – and you WILL get that 3.15 mara 🙂 You work your socks off so im positive that more plugging away it will be yours 🙂
MemberApril 16, 2019 at 8:07 am
Fantastic result jon even if you didnt get your PB. Totally agree with the sentiments and Vasos is the king of Ultras for sure. However we do have to set goals that are achievable otherwise we are forever disappointed. No matter if I trained until my bum was on fire I know there is less than zero chance of me ever ever ever running a marathon in under 4 hours so we do have to be realistic about our individual expectations. Hours and hours of training doesnt fix everything 😊
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