If you’re not on Facebook you might have missed that I did it…. I ran my 2nd London marathon.
I’m smiling here but I really was in bits… physically, mentally and emotionally. My brain was hardly working to get me to figure out where I’d pick up my bag. I truly was totally spent, burnt out and empty.
Looking back now, this was the closest I’ve ever been to the dreaded ‘wall’… I was delirious, nearly non cognitive, emotional, upset, happy and done. I took on plenty of energy, carried 1.5L of water and pick up bottles at most water stations.
In my 11 marathons I’ve completed, I’ve never got to feeling this way, and if I hadn’t crossed the finish line when I did, I know I would have smacked right into that wall and fallen over.
Lucky for me my good friend Lesley was there at the end to scoop me up, wipe away my tears (of joy, pain and whatever else)… to direct me home for a shower and steak.
With the hot weather (20-22’C), I reassessed my goals and respected the conditions, setting an outside target of 4 hours… and I’d see what I could manage. I wouldn’t be put out if I didn’t achieve it, but it’d be a target to try to get.
Once again, just like in London 2016, the crowd of both runners and spectators were amazing. Non stop crowds cheering you on. I had my name on my chest, and got cheered on countless times.
I was even able to ask for cheers on tap – with my pink cape on, all I needed to do was raise one arm in superman style, and people would shout my name out. It was great.
As was getting notifications on my garmin from numerous people I know including people I coach, friends, family, colleagues and my Dad who got in touch about 3 hours in, just when I needed it.
People I know from all over the UK and the world cheering me on (an unknown foreign number came through – Janice from Spain – I knew it was her as it came through the way she writes). Isn’t technology amazing?
I ran pretty hard (HR 165 / 90%) until about 10 miles 1 hr 25, then as it hotted up and people started dropping like flies around me, I decided I’d ease off for the next 10 miles (HR 160-163 / 88-89%).
At 12 miles to go it was getting tough, and I started counting down the miles. And at about 6-8 miles to go I was threatened with cramp in my left calf which luckily didn’t materialise, then nearly cramp in my left quad near the end. I did everything I could to stretch them as I ran…and just I managed to ‘run’ all the way.
With 3-5 miles to go I closed down a bit, turned on automatic pilot… got my head down, gritted my teeth and tried to keep on in there. I wasn’t in too good a place, but I kept in hanging in there. I knew I would finish, but it was hard.
The cheers and noise which was so motivational in the first 16-18 miles, became too noisy and overwhelming … I just wanted to turn them off if I could. 😳
I’ve never felt like that before, and what a contrast to when I ran and enjoyed London in 2016.
With a mile and a half to go. I was counting down the minutes and knew I was really close to being under 4…
And as I creeped closer to the finish, I switched my garmin to pace to stay on track. My garmin was ahead of the course distance and just before turning onto the Mall I stopped my watch at 26.2 in 3:58:39…
… then as I turned the corner to the Mall, with 250m to go, I saw the clock counting up and I know I’d be close to being under 4 hours, or not. One last push between me and the finish line.
I pushed home, and across the line and got a notification to say I finished in 3:59:57. I kept walking and held it together for a bit, then was so chuffed I’d managed to nail it, even if it was right to the wire.
I was 1212th in my age category across the line, the 2206th and the 9683rd person across the line – in the top 24% of runners. Perhaps the first Lorn to cross the line? (I didn’t check). 😜
My average HR was 161 or 88% on average, and 172 (94%) max. I ran 50,000 steps and walked 10,000… and I burned about 3,400 calories.
Many of you and my friends, family and colleagues have all been so generous, and they’ve donated a total of £970… if you’d still like to donate, you can do it here: http://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/lornrunsthelondonmarathon2018
I’m not walking too well today, but it should get easier from about Wednesday onwards.
Thanks again for reading, commenting and donating, it means and meant a lot.
And a big special mention to Lesley who really looked after me and treated me to the biggest (and tastiest) lump of meat I’ve ever seen afterwards. 👍🏻
I’m away for a wee lie down and a big long sleep tonight now (I only managed about 2 hours last night due to the after effects of the run). Back to work tomorrow, and I shall be avoiding the stairs / taking the lift!