Posted: 09/04/2014 at 12:48
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!