Jugula - 10 min/miles sounds way too fast. I often tell first time marathoners to double their half time and add one hour. Unless they're super fast club runners that's the time they often finish in, they're pleased with that, they've enjoyed the race and they look forward to doing another (which invariably is much quicker - but then they know they can do the distance). Portsmouth is not a fast marathon - you've got grass, paths, mud, shingle, sea water if you're toooo slow and lots of people/dogs wandering around on the seafront. Why not leave the watch at home, start near the back, chat to a few runners and then fall in with someone who is going at a comfortable pace?
mamafox - great race and sounds like you really enjoyed it (especially the beating Jocelyne bit )
snapdragon - I guess it's about not letting your fitness slip down - just keep it up all the time. And most of my 'races' are quite slow, often LDWA type where time is not an issue and you can just enjoy it. Doing marathons is much more fun than doing LSRs all by yourself (or with a club where everyone dashes off at 8m/m)
s3200 - As for ultras for next year : XRNG ones are good although quite expensive and you can do just one day. Others I like are Imber Ultra (nr Salisbury) March 33mls, Sevenoaks Circular March 30mls, Pewsey Downsaround Apr 35mls (I've only done the marathon -nice but MUDDY), Oxon 40mls May (HILLY), Ridgeway 40mls May, Northants Ultra June 35mls and Salisbury 54321 Aug 50k. They are all off road (Salisbury very varied terrain) and require some navigation. I also like Coventry Way May 40mls and Pathfinder March June 46mls - these are multi-terrain with a bit more roadwork. Check out the 100MC website - they have a list of most ultras. Also depends if you want to run when it gets dark .
I did Chelmsford Parks Marathon on Sunday - mainly because it's only 45 mins away. First time they ran this event and the organisers have some improvements to make if they want people to return. I've put some feedback on the events ratings if anyone is interested, so won't bore you all here! Main problem was that it had rained in the previous few days (in October? in England? never!) and the course needed to be re-routed on the Sunday morning. The advertised 2 laps turned into 2 laps and a mini 3rd lap (about 3 miles), which apparently some runners missed out (either deliberately? or because they didn't know about it?). I passed a runner I know slightly half way through the 2nd lap. I left him behind and he didn't go past me after that. In the results he's about 30 mins faster than me - finishing in the same time as I had just started my 3rd lap . Anyway I found it a bit tougher than I thought it would be but stuck in and finished in 4:16.
KK - I'm doing Snowdonia too. Don't know why - I'm not keen on hills .
Iain - well done on your 10k . 10th place in your first official 10k is pretty good going. Have you thought about doing x-country for your club this winter?
Moore06 - bad luck at Abingdon. I think I know the lady you refer to - she had a nasty accident at IOW last week. Which double are you doing in November?
slowkoala - well done on your run at Cabbage Patch . Did they give out brussel sprouts instead of medals?
Big G - good news from the pod . You've obviously adopted the right strategy to heal that achilles. You could approach a marathon as 8.5 times a 5k (pure physical torture eight and a half times )
Shades - probably a good decision to sacrifice DD in favour of Dublin. I know how much you like your Irish marathons.
Jugula - sorry to hear that things didn't go to plan in your marathon. Perhaps too many sweet things during the run (the low blood sugar would have been because they were undigested and brought back up again). Had you tried those things before, how much of each did you take when running? Or do you think you set off too fast? I also think you should do Portsmouth - with no pressure, just enjoy the run.
((Big G)) - hope all goes well today. A tree is a lovely memorial. How about a bench at the zoo. I saw a lovely plaque on one at the Canal Ultra in Stratford. It said 'Sit thee dahn, rest a while. Tell me where tha's bin.'
Good luck to all racers at the weekend - a variety of distances!
Iain's time? I'll predict 36:25.
Snapdragon - what kind of distance are you looking at? And what kind of terrain?