Elevation wise I had about 1450ft up – and you know what didn’t it ever feel like it. Initially after I finished I don’t think I’ve ever felt so exhausted after a race … and for the first time I was thinking “never, ever again” and that notion applied to not only Bristol to Bath but marathon distance in its entirety. However … two days after the event … I still won’t return to Bristol to Bath but I will carry on running marathons. London next … and after the course profile on Sunday it should be a doddle.
However the desire not to return to Bristol to Bath is nothing personal against the race. It’s fuelled purely by how hard it was. I am beyond proud to have gone sub 4 for the first time and for it to be on that course … and I am extremely glad I chose that race and as with the rest of you got through it. As it had never been ran before there was an air of the unknown about the whole thing … I couldn’t quite work out beforehand just how bad the hills were going to feel … next year there won’t be as much uncertainty and there will be amply documented tales of woe and stories of just how tough it was. Wasn’t it great to have been there for the very first one though? Chatting with friends and colleagues I’ve loved describing how, personally, I found the hills soul destroying.
Have to echo the comments here though. I was astounded by the support. I never usually take my Ipod on race day as I like to soak up the atmosphere but I had planned to for this one with the assumption that support would be sparse – and then duly forgot to take it with me to the start. But I’m glad I forgot it. There were stretches where support disappeared but you get that with every race but I lost count of the stretches where the support was stunningly good. There was one point towards the end where I felt like the crowds were within touching distance on each side!! It was amazing. And for some of the hills having that support and the “come on you’re almost at the top” and “come on, it’s the last hill” (which was often an outright lie) it really did help. So for me, big shout out to the organisers and to every last person who came out and supported the race. I would do it again in a heartbeat if I was brave enough.
Loved the medal and I even picked up what I think was a ‘peach black tea’ drink at the finish. I hate peach and I hate black tea – but I can safely say that was the best thing I have tasted!!!!
Would love to keep on hearing other stories of the big day!!! I'm always a big emotional moron when it comes to races and like revisiting them and hearing about others experiences
Hi all - and well done all!!! I managed 3:58:52 and I am absolutely ecstatic with that as I never thought I would ever go sub 4 on any marathon. Smashed 24 minutes off my PB. However, my god wasn't that a rough course. I couldn't believe it. never again But what a day. Support was immense
Hello again all. Not been able to get on here for a little while. Sorry to hear about everyone's ailments - I've been suffering too ... had a stomach bug that has wiped out all but 4 people out of a team of 15 at work - fortunately would appear that it's easing out now. Fortunately again I guess it happened in the last week of the taper - managed to go out for a few short 3 milers but ... impending gross out ... had a few dashes to the loo once I'd finished!!!
Still - it's so close now. I am very very nervous about this one - mainly because with the hills I've no idea how to approach it. But I guess I'll know come Sunday!!
Good luck everyone! Hope all the illnesses and injuries clear up!!!
I'm doing 10 easy miles tomorrow morning, (funny how we've all seemed to pick that distance) rest Sunday I'll run 6 miles Monday, 6 on tuesday, 6 on Thursday and then 3 on Friday. Although they'll all be slow slow slow runs. To be honest that's probably too much but I know my body and I am very used to that as standard mileage and do it before all marathons - probably more in my head than anything else but like to keep ticking over.
I echo the sentiments - Good luck Black & Tabby - I'm sure you'll push through and have a nice shiny medal to show for it.
As I've mentioned before, I live in Gloucester so don't know the hills at all. I was chatting to colleague who commutes from that part of the world and he was like 'Kelston Hill - you're not seriously running up that in the middle of a marathon?' I admitted that I was going to be with a mixture of fear but mainly pride as 'Yeah, damn right I'm going to master that hill!'
So in short, I've very much decided not to worry about the hills. I'm totally embracing them because yep, I'm doing a marathon that is even harder than the standard ones!
As you can tell ... getting excited and counting down!!! Although the taper is doing its standard work and I ran 6 miles yesterday and was knackered after a mile!!! Hate the taper