Race Report: Abingdon Marathon 2013 (2 Comments)

Earlier this year I took my first stab at a sub-3 hour marathon at the Milton Keynes marathon and completely misjudged things and in retrospect probably my abilities at the time, and completely blew it. On Sunday I took another stab at that elusive sub-3 marathon mark in my third ever marathon, the Abingdon Marathon, and smashed it out of the ballpark.

Following my disappointing run at the Milton Keynes marathon I decided I was going to create a properly structured training programme that would guide me to a great marathon time. After a little bit of research and reading I stumbled upon Marathoning The Hansons' Way. Intrigued by this approach and the relative simplicity (compared to The Daniels Runner Formula), I purchased their book - Hansons Marathon Method - in Kindle format, read it, and devised my four month training programme. This ended up being a great programme which I'll cover that in another post.

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This is the big day I've been training for: the Abingdon Marathon. It has just tipped it down, so let's hope that's it until I'm done.

First Road Race Podium Finish (2 Comments)

I ran the Reading O2O 10K on Sunday morning and bagged my first ever podium finish...

First Road Race Podium Finish | Smashed my previous PB by 1:05 in the process.

Smashed my previous PB by 1:05 in the process.

I'd completely forgotten about this race until I noticed one of the signs on Friday morning whilst out on my run. Once back in the office, I checked if I could enter on the day - I could - and the previous year's results and I thought I'd have a chance at a podium finish so decided I'd do it.

Sunday morning I popped down to TVP, registered and entered the race. As is common with races people shoot off from the start and a group of about 8 guys headed off ahead of me. I wasn't too worried and played things safe and ran at my own pace. I was soon up in 5th place and then started reeling in the guys ahead of me. I was in 4th by 6km with the third place guy in my sights: first and second were long gone and out of sight.

I then closed the gap on the third place guy and was hot on his heels by the 8km mark. At this point he seemed to slow down, so I slowed a little too as I wasn't sure if he was going to try and burn me at the end. I soon determined his legs were shot and there was no way he was going to keep up with me, so I took him and pulled a comfortable gap with about 1km to go. It was at this point I noticed that the 2nd place chap wasn't actually that far ahead of me. I think with a bit of effort I could have caught him had I seen him sooner :-)

I finished strongly and in a time of 35:20 gun time and 35:18 chip time shaving 1:05 off my previous PB. Chuffed to bits about getting both a podium finish (got a trophy but no cash :-( ) and a huge new PB. In retrospect, I think I might have been able to break 35mins had I not been scared of being challenged by the guy who eventually came forth.

Next up: Abingdon Marathon in which I'm aiming for a sub-3.

I got to play rabbit today at Reading #parkrun. Led from about 800m and ticked off my 3rd parkrun first & a new PB. 17:08 by my watch.

Update: Official time ended up being 17:10, still a PB :-)

Added another sub-80 half-marathon to my name & a PB too. Maidenhead in 1:19:23 on my watch. Chip time likely to be quicker.

Just got my second parkrun 1st and knocked 14 seconds off the PB I set last week to finish in a respectable 17:10 by my watch.

Cracking Wargrave 10k

I had a cracking race at the Wargrave 10k today. I went in with a goal of sub-38 mins with a planned negative split as the only real hill is between 3 and 4ks. Ran 18:45 for the first 5k and 17:53 for the second 5k (my fastest 5k this season) bringing me home strong in a new PB of 36:38 according to my watch. Gun time as you can see in the photo was 36:40 and I suspect chip time may be slightly quicker than 36:38.

Wargrave 10k Results

Interesting that my race number and finishing position are both 14. It can't be often that this happens to non-elite runners.

Chuffed to bits and in retrospect I think I may have been able to go even quicker. Now I'm off to Waitrose for some treats for lunch and then to the pub for a reward beer or two. Off to India tomorrow so it'll be interesting to see what running I manage to squeeze in.

Update: official results are in and my chip time, and thus new PB, was 36:36.

Popped out for a quick run at lunch: the Microsoft TVP 5k Fun Run… and won (go Oracle!) in 18:07. Nice little pootle round TVP in the cold & wet made much nicer by getting a winner's kiss from my wife.