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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Andover Marathon and Parkrun

The day started early in time for breakfast and then to de-ice the car before travelling to the venue. When leaving it was still -1C (30F) and when I got a few miles in to the drive it start to lightly snow but luckily it was not settling on the ground. It was a tropical 2C when I arrived at the venue.

I got out of my car and promptly slipped on the ice all on the car park and landed on my right gluteus maximus (back side). It was sore but luckily I did not land on part of my car and nobody was around to see me fall. I then went round on the grass to avoid the ice.

For the parkrun it was too icy in places they changed the route to avoid the paths and just on the grass. As I was pacing somebody round running their non stop which we did and 1 minute quicker than their previous best. It was a comfortable pace for me as a warm before the marathon but was glad to have on a few layers to keep warm and avoid the mud.

Then carefully making it back to the car I changed some outer layers as was starting to warm up in the sun but was still cold but would hopefully I would warm up on the marathon. I also had a can of high caffeine drink to get a bit of a kick pre run.

The 35 of us doing the marathon listened to the race instructions and then we started the 105.5 laps!!

I lost count of my laps after about 4 laps in to the run and ignored the advice to disable the GPS on my watch. I was just focussing on and following the line between lanes 1 and 2 as per the race briefing.

The sun was out and clear blue skies but was bitterly cold made colder with the occasional cold wind but looked ideal conditions.


The first part of the race I went of faster than planned, which I think was not helped by the fact that I was being overtaking after 3 laps and there was people always around you. I found that I was trying to catch people up instead of sticking to my own pace, hopefully that would not catch up with me.

I liked the fact that I was only 200m from an aid station. So I had one isotonic drink on the table on opposites sides of the track and one of the sides I had my gels. This allowed me to stick to my nutrition plan of drinks and gels every 15/30 minutes after an hour, as I could tell when I need to get a gel or drink and return the bottle or gel bag the next lap. This meant I did not need to carry any nutrition for more than 400m.

I was glad of the two toilet breaks I took an hour and 3 hours in, especially as the it was the main track building which had a heater in, it was worth the 100m extra each time.

When I got to about 3 hours in my muscles were already feeling fatigued due to lack of training and the distance but my right glute was also sore from the fall on the ice earlier in the day and the fact we were running anti clockwise direction on the track meant more force would be used on my right side, doh!!

When I got a 4 hours in I thought I was nearly at the finish going by my GPS, apparently I was not that was a bit of a blow but I carried on but a slower pace, I should have listened to advice at the start.

Then I was told I had just 2 laps to go and picked up the pace and when the bell went for my last lap I then picked up the pace a bit more. As I crossed the finish line in 4:39 I was glad it was over and even got a great medal.

Andover Marathon

My average pace for the marathon was 10:40 per mile according to my GPS (some issue on a track) the second last 1/4 mile was at 8:23 pace the last 1/4 mile was at 6:15 pace. It was a bit of a hobble the short way back to the car with my muscles aching.

After putting some warm clothes on and had a sports recovery drink but there was still a few people left out on the track with the lights being on for about an hour.

Andover Marathon

The race T-Shirt with a Lion and Oak leaf, I found out they are part of the town crest.

Andover Marathon

Even the medal had a race t-shirt on.

Andover Marathon

Don't mess with me I survived the first Andover Marathon, GRR.

Andover Marathon

I just need to do a summer marathon without the swim and cycle warm up "bit" then run a marathon in all seasons. Also a trail/off road marathon would complete the set after doing a number of road and now a track marathon.

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