Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Crawley Marathon

Boy was I not fit for this race, and in hind-sight should have probably not run it, but being stubborn and knowing what Alex has been though in the MdS this last week I wasn’t going to let a lower back pain stop me from trying.

The race was organised by the 100km Association, at the K2 leisure centre in Crawley, and was held on the athletics track - so 105 laps of track and no IPod allowed to help pass the time of day, so it was a case of strong mental attitude to switch off and just run. I had my Garmin to pace myself and set off at 7:45 min mile pace, which would have given me a finishing time of 3:20ish - inside my PB of 3:32:09 (oh how that time is easily remembered). The weather was being kind to me for the first time this year (racing-wise) and I soon settled into the rhythm for running for a lap, calling my counters name and switching off for another 400m.

Lap after lap was ticked off and I passed the time doing mental sums trying to work out distances and pace etc, without resorting to my watch.. I had a drop bag which I left by the side of the track, filled with chocolate covered espresso beans, Sports Beans, Dried fruit from Whitworths and cereal bars, and the organisers provided drinks and jelly babies as well, so I was expecting to come off heavier than I started.

I had set myself smaller targets to work to, rather than thing of the whole distance, and concentrated on batches of 10 laps, 25 laps and half way, and then count downwards. The heat though started to play its part and I had made the mistake to not drinking early enough and then starting to fade. The first half of the race went well, passing ½ marathon point in 1:39, so bang on target, but as I hit 75 laps (19 miles) I hit the wall and had to resort to a run/walk technique. Thankfully this is where running on a marked track helped. I was running 300m, the walking 100m, so would run from the 200m start until round the first bend and then walk to the next start again. This worked perfectly until 3 laps from the end when the organisers made us change direction and run clockwise round the track. Thankfully by that time with only 1200m left I didn’t care and happily ran the rest.

Biggest annoyance was the I had been forced to run 3 extra laps as my recorder had missed me a couple of times and not put me down. My watch time was 3:54:16 for the marathon, and the extra 3 laps added a further 8 minutes to the race, but happy to finish on the back of a tiring week and with no real pain in my legs, back and shoulders after the trip home.

Very nice memento of the race, making a change to the usual medals, and worth the money. Well organised, friendly counters and marshals, and a chance to hold the Olympic flame too (albeit the torch for the 1948 London Olympics).

Next up - a few weeks of heavy training, Frinton Half Marathon with Mandy & Freya doing the fun run and then Grand Union Canal Race………….

Polaroid Sunglasses
Buff - Begins design
Buff BOW10 T-shirt
Salomon Shorts
X-Socks - Run Energiser
Asics Gel Cumulus Trainers - Courtesy of Fitness Footwear

1 comment:

Adam said...

I didn't know there was a marathon in Frinton. Get some nice fish n' chips once you're done :)