Job done!

Well I completed the Loch Rannoch Marathon despite moments when I thought I wouldn’t. I have my official time which was 3 hours 34 minutes and 39 seconds. I was 59th out of 189 runners and second in my age category (V60) Several things went wrong which I will detail in my race report but at the end of the day it was a pb by 9 minutes 2 seconds so I’m happy about that. Here I am after the finish feeling revived after three mugs of tea!


Four days until Loch Rannoch Marathon!

I’m really looking forward to my second marathon this Sunday. My training has gone spectacularly well. No injuries, good runs, excellent times (for me!) and I feel that in terms of strength, fitness and weight I’m pretty much exactly where I want to be.


This isn’t Loch Rannoch but it serves as a reminder of how great it will be to run surrounded by beautiful Scottish scenery. I’m aiming to run a personal best – my time in the first marathon I ran was 3 hours 43 minutes 41 seconds so that’s the first target.IMG_0303

The forecast for Sunday isn’t too bad. Cool with a very light breeze would be ideal!

Marathon training is hard!

Not much in life comes easily. And if you want to run a marathon you have to do the training. I’m just back from a two week cruise which was wonderful in terms of a holiday and life experience but perhaps not the easiest means of continuing marathon training. The boat was too small to run on; it wasn’t safe to run when we berthed because I was scared I would drop keys, security passes etc and the only real option in the small gym on board was a treadmill. I know some people like treadmills but I’m not one of them. I did my best but at best my training stalled for two weeks and at worst it regressed a little. I’ve done two runs since coming back and they weren’t good in terms of pace and heartbeat. The big test will be the long run tomorrow which ramps up to 18 miles.

However to finish on the positive side I didn’t put as much weight on as I feared. I’m still completely injury free. I have two months left to get to where I want to be on the starting line. My only worries are about my finish time and not whether I can complete it.

Never easy

Week 4 of marathon training didn’t go so well. I had three runs and in each one I struggled with pace, time, heart-rate and energy levels. When runs don’t go so well you frantically go through in your mind the possible reasons. These include the weather conditions : heat, wind, wet surfaces etc then your own condition. Is there a fitness problem; is there an injury or the start of one; are you eating the right foods; are you over-training or increasing your distance too quickly? Are your running shoes needing replaced; are you worrying about something which is affecting your running; are you thinking negative thoughts or have you generally lost confidence? And there are a number of other possibilities!

After more than a little thought, I’m unsure what the problem is but I refuse to worry about it. It’s only week 4 of 18 and I’m fairly sure it’s nothing physical. On the positive side I’m on page 2 (of 4) of my training schedule and my long run at the start of week 5 was 10 miles and it was a much better run. Where running is concerned there’s a lot of truth in the saying : “You can if you think you can.”

End of week 3 marathon training

Another week of training ticked off successfully. October 16 is still so far away that I refuse to get too stressed. My worst run this week was the 40 minute tempo run on Monday where I found it hard from start to finish. My long run moves up to 9 miles tomorrow. A cool dry morning would be perfect. I plan to run off-road as much as possible for the nine miles.


Marathon training week two

Well there’s a title I never expected to be writing again.

I don’t normally enthuse about anything but I’ve had a great time since entering the Loch Rannoch Marathon. It just feels so right to be working towards something big but achievable. Better still the doctor has cleared me to run. She asked a few questions and then took my blood pressure. It shows how much I want to do this that before she tested it I told her that my blood pressure is always considerably higher when I visit the doctor due to “white coat syndrome.” In the event the pressure was fine, almost normal in fact.

And I’ve had an early birthday present of two very important helpers :

It’s a rubbish photo but it is in fact a Garmin Forerunner and a heart rate monitor. Don’t ask how they work but they tell you everything you need to know when running about time, distance, pace, cadence(strides per minute), heart rate, elevation gain and so on. After the run it produces reports which geeks like me can pour over for hours :



Because I’ve been running regularly all year my basic fitness levels aren’t too bad and as a result the first week of training has been pretty straightforward. It will get harder though!