For two days after the marathon it was almost too painful to go down stairs. I’m told that I got off lightly. You do have to wonder whether it is good to give your body this much punishment. Six days after the marathon I was back at Edinburgh parkrun for the weekly 5k run. I figured that the marathon training would give me one good shot at a 5k personal best before the benefits were dissipated by eating and drinking all the bad things I had deprived myself of pre-marathon. But there was no pb that week although my friend who also did the marathon and had not had a pb in over 60 parkruns ran an absolute stormer and nailed a pb. I shared her joy.
A week later I was back at parkrun (obsessives like me need a routine) I hadn’t trained, hadn’t eaten properly and didn’t expect very much. I started slower and could tell early on that it was going to be a smoother run. At 4k much to my surprise I found that I was almost bang on pb time. I felt encouraged and despite being tired by that stage kept going as strongly as I could. At the start of the final trees 350 metres from the finish where pb’s are won and lost I was a second ahead. I determined to run as fast as I could for 20 breaths and after 20 I persuaded my tired legs to give me five more. As I crossed the line I was surprised and delighted to see a pb by four seconds. This was my final gift from the marathon training.
I’ve run three parkruns since then and while my times are respectable I am not threatening my pb. The school holidays have started and I’m keen to keep some level of fitness. And I have to start preparing to play squash. There’s a sentence I never thought I would write!