I hope you're now feeling more positive, following everyone's great feedback and responses reminding you that you are now in the 1 per cent of the population who have finished a marathon!
For what it's worth, I don't think it's all about the lack of a 20-mile run. I, and many others I know, had never run 20 miles prior to their first marathon. (I'd done 16.) But what I HAD done is train regularly and consistently for many weeks and months prior to it. I think it's a challenge for someone so new to running to build up to a marathon in 16 weeks - and it doesn't really allow for any leeway for things to go wrong. It wasn't just the weeks you missed when you were sworn off ANY running but the fact that you couldn't then just jump back in when you left off even when you were running again. So I'd say you missed a month of consistent training which is a lot when you don't have months of mileage behind you as back-up. You now have this performance, and the training you DID do, to build on and take you to your next running goal. You said a few weeks back at TD2, 'I will finish, no matter how long it takes me' - and you did cross that line. I'm proud of you for doing that and hope you are too.
Good luck to everyone running London this weekend - run well, and enjoy!
Hey James - just seen your first and second half splits - incredible! Like Isabel, you ran almost exactly even halves. I'm so proud and impressed!
It's been a real pleasure working with you over the last 4 months - you've shown a great capacity for training both hard and long and I have no doubt you will be running sub 3.45 or 3.40 on your next outing. Best of luck to you and Sara in Dubai - it was lovely to meet her.
Big congrats also to James and Andy on your sub 4s - and commiserations to Orapidruns on the DNF. I'm sure you'll be back on form soon.
It's been great interacting on this thread. Thanks for all your contributions!
Isabel, hello! Hope you had a good journey back and bet you're still reeling from your marathon success. I'm so proud of you! To run 2.04.28 and 2.04.33 for the two halves is an incredible split - almost identical halves. I bet you now have your sights set on a sub 4.00 and quite rightly so.
Enjoy the recovery this week. It's been great working with you and I look forward to seeing you continue to progress.
Hi all - those pre-race jitters are emanating from the page now!
I had an OK but poorly executed race yesterday. (Bumped into DS2, which was nice!) Basically, me and my husband lost each other at the start area, and I had the dog so I couldn't warm up or even join the enormous loo queue. So then when he finally found me I was seething and stormed off (I know, I know, I'm suitably embarrassed). Only realised I'd stormed off without any gels or drinks after the gun had gone off. Oops. Felt OK to 10 miles, and then totally bonked. Pace dropped by 30 seconds a mile for 11 and 12, and I barely picked it up for final mile. Finished in 1.34.01. So learn from my mistakes, all, and be super-organised on race morning