The marathon was a bit of a disaster, it rained from start to finish and as a result my silly insoles slipped all over the place despite me having stuck them in place (clearly not very well). I ended up running with my heel hitting the carbon plate of the insole which quickly turned into a blister. I also ended up getting pins and needles in my foot because the movement of the orthotic raised my food and made my laces super tight. As I spent most of the race worrying about this and trying to claw the thing back into place with my toes I didn’t notice anything wrong with my right leg. Fast forward to the end of the race and my legs felt like they had been smashed with a bat, somehow I still managed to run 3:00:36, the course was 200m long so I am claiming that as a sub 3hr marathon! Over the following days walking was a bit of an issue and I knew something wasn’t quite right with my leg.
Waking up at 6am and looking out the window to a flurry of snow falling from the sky you know that running 58 miles is going to be a challenge! Without thinking much more about it I donned my running shoes chucked on my back pack and headed into London to Marble Arch where I would start my little journey to run to Paris!
The Comrades Marathon is an ultra marathon of approximately 89 km which is run annually in between Pietermaritzburg and Durban in South Africa. It is the world’s largest and oldest ultra marathon race with 20,000 people entered into this years race. The direction of the race alternates each year between the ‘up’ run starting from Durban and the ‘down’ run starting from Pietermaritzburg. This year I would be towing the line and attempting the Down run!
Fancy darting through Sherwood Forest as fast as possible whilst trying to read a map, firing bow and arrows and climbing up castle turrets then this race is for you!
Read my full write up of this adrenaline pumped and Red Bull infused orienteering race on Hard as Trail
After a summer of running around and up and down mountains in the Alps I got home and decided to look for an autumn marathon to run. Chester marathon caught my eye as a lovely marathon that started in a pretty historic town and then wound it’s way through scenic country lanes. With 7 weeks to go I signed up and started training. I also moved house and found a new running club to run with – Windsor Slough Eton & Hounslow (WSE&H). Conrad Milton took me under his wing and helped me with a marathon-training programme that would provide a much needed shock to the system. I instantly loved the WSE&H training sessions as the training group I was put in. I had a lovely group of girls to train with which was a welcomed change especially to Sunday long runs.
I first heard about the tour of Mont Blanc through a couple of friends that had taken part in the Ultra Trail Mont Blanc (UTMB) a crazy race that sees hardy individuals complete the 170km route through 3 countries dipping down into several valleys and raising up many cols to total 10,000m of climbing in one go. Having not really spent that much time on my two feet in the mountains and the fact that you need to gain sought after qualification points and be successful in a ballot before even gaining your place on the start line completing the UTMB is currently out of my reach (for now).
Yesterday morning I made my way to London for the Bupa London 10,000. As I got to London I made my way down The Mall in search for the Championship Tent. I eventually found it and automatically felt like I didn’t belong in there. I took a seat between Beth Potter and Jo Pavey and to say I felt slightly out of my depth was an understatement. There was a splattering of GB and Commonwealth kit and a myriad of abs on display all over the tent and nervous anticipation in the air as the Bupa 10,000 which incorporated the British 10,000 Championships was little under an hour away.
As I sat in the tent wondering what the hell I was doing there I started to listen to some of the other girls saying how they weren’t going to PB or do well. To me this is a very silly thing to think just before a race. If you don’t think you are going to do well then you won’t! Get that negativity out of your head ladies and tell yourself and honestly believe that you are going to smash that race! Then you will…simple!
Yesterday morning my alarm started to beep at a very early 05.30am to wake me up for the Highland Fling Relay! I wasn’t entirely sure what I was about to embark on, needless to say this was completely my own fault as I decided to keep my leg a ‘surprise’. All I knew was that I was going to run on trails for around 14miles and would have to run up and down Conic Hill in the process.
So I headed to a car park in Milngavie to meet the rest of my team. For 6.30am everyone was in incredibly high spirits potentially due to the mountains of cake we had secured in the boot of the car. Making our way to the start Marnie was up first and at 7am along with the rest of the relay runners disappeared into the distance. We hopped back into the car and drove to Drymen to where I would be taking on the relay baton or timing chip in this case.