I knew from Mile 3 that things weren’t going well. I was trying to hold 3:20 pace for the first 5K but my legs weren’t working properly, and I really suffered in the heat. I’d covered myself in sun cream but found myself taking on water at nearly every drinks station to try and stay hydrated. I was even pouring water on my wrists and thighs (as Liz had suggested) to try and cool down too.
I really backed off my pace from then on, but never managed to get back on track. My hamstring was hurting and there was just nothing in my legs. Even concentrating on my effort levels (rather than pace) - it just felt hard all the way round.
If I’m honest, there weren’t any particular highlights during the race but it’s not about taking one race result away from the experience – it’s about building on everything I’ve learnt over the past few months. I’ve had some great results during my warm-up races and a wonderful experience throughout.
The forums have been amazing – people have posted so many lovely comments on my thread, especially last week. I’ve been trying to reply to everyone who’s posted regardless of their target time – after all, I said from the outset that I wanted my journey to inspire as many people as possible. And they’ve really inspired me with all their kindness and support.
I will achieve my marathon target soon, I’ve no doubt about it – today just wasn’t my day.