Posted: 29/04/2015 at 12:13
I’m completely blown away with some of the amazing and gutsy performances at VLM.
Jools – I’m so happy for you to have cracked sub 2:50 with such a fantastic performance. You are an inspiration for us all and your hard work has brought you the result you deserve. I know you had plenty of disappointments along the way to sub 3 but have taken yet another huge leap forward again.
GE – Great report and GFA achieved especially considering your cramping issues.
OO – Excellent sub 3 and PB
SB - Well done on the sub 3:15 and cramp management.
DPoD – Unlucky not get sub 3:15 but that’s still a great performance
MsE – Fantastic sub 3 and loved your detailed report
Lor- Excellent sub 3:10 and a good report
RJ – 2:22! Take a bow Sir. Stellar!
Brix- Great PB and sub 3:15
Poach- Nice fancy dress running and your 58 completed marathons/ultras is amazing. So will you be targeting 100 then?
Birch – Great 3:18 and age group placing. Well done on the recent improvement. Great report too.
TAR – Sorry to read about your woes but a gutsy performance.
London was my 18th marathon (or ultra) with all but one in the last 5 years since I turned 40. I ran a recent HM PB of 1:20:45 and was targeting my marathon PB of 2:54:08 set in Dublin 2013. All my times were slower last year due to concentrating on Ultra marathons and I only ran 2:58 in Dublin last year while trying to PB. This year I was determined to improve despite missing weeks of training in January and getting Chicken Pox a month ago. I followed a 12 week P&D schedule peaking at 95 miles.
I flew over on Friday and got to the expo for the first time and enjoyed doing laps of the free sample stands. It certainly helped with the carbo loading stuffing my face with Cliff shots and bars. I ran the Becton Parkrun on Saturday and finished holding hands with former 5k/HM world record holder Lornah Kiplagat.
Race morning went well and I lined up at the FGFA section full of confidence wearing a 2:52:30 (6:35) pace wrist band. Off we went at 10:10 and I took about 30 seconds to reach the start line and started my Garmin. As everyone knows it’s not easy to run your own pace due to the early congestion and I completed the first mile in 6:50. This was expected so nothing to worry about and I knew a few downhill miles would soon bring me back on course. The important thing was to stay relaxed and not weave round people if possible.
The next few miles were ticked off in 6:38, 6:18, 6:12, 6:20, 6:26 and I reached 10k in about 40:10 a little ahead of schedule. I checked my HR for the one and only time and was happy to see it was sitting around 150 and I was feeling strong and relaxed. I wanted to get to half way slightly ahead of target as I expected a little slow down later on. I ran the following miles in 6:30, 6:27, 6:28, 6:30, 6:25, 6:36, 6:32, 6:37 and went through half way in just over 1:25.
At 14 miles I was feeling great and started to think that a sub 2:50 might be possible. I decided to forget about targeting 6:35 pace average and try to run 6:30 and see how I felt after 20 miles. I was hoping to see my family around 15 miles and while looking for them forgot my Garmin lap button and forgot again at 16 miles. The tall building in Canary Wharf were playing havoc with my Garmin too. At 17 miles I hit lap 3 times to bring me back on course but had run those miles in over 6:35 pace.
It was getting tougher now and I could only manage 6:38 and 6:45 through plenty of turns and a few minor inclines. I knew 2:50 was slipping away and even started getting concerned my initial goal of sub 2:54 would be in danger if I didn&rsqu