Finally back to writing......
OS COBBLER CLASSIC
GREATER MANCHESTER MARATHON
I arrived at Old Trafford Cricket Ground in loads of time, leaving Mrs R in bed, dumped my bag and milled around like everyone else, not really appreciating how far away the start line was! A beautiful morning though and nothing but blue skies (thank you Lloydy), which obviously meant it would be a hot one (and as it turned out, the hottest day of the year)!
Once I settled in to the race it went by relatively quickly (well as much as 26.2 miles does), the course was great, especially the first 19 miles which had fantastic support all round and some loops which meant you were always in the thick of it and could see a lot of the front runners, and also you got the opportunity to see friends that were out on the course too. From 19 to 22 through Carrington, it was still lovely but almost turned in to a 'Long Sunday Run'. It was so serene in comparison and quite probably those miles for most, meant digging in a bit harder, you were alone with your thoughts for a while without many distractions, well apart from cattle waft!
I think those three miles through Carrington had me digging deep because the last 6 km's I was beginning to suffer pretty badly with cramp, I slowed my pace down to 'manage' the onset progressing and just coasted home. Well that was until I saw Caz at the finish line and made my little dart for the line and everything pinged all over the place - but it was worth it, just to see her face and hear her shouting my name as I came down that finishing stretch.
As a marker for determining where I was at, that was pretty telling and on the whole I was very happy with that. The prep had been far from ideal, as any marathon runner or coach will tell you, the best prep for marathon running is running! I'd done little of that in the build up, however I'd still managed to crack it out almost just off the back of rehab work! It felt like a big tick in the box. The only negative about the whole day was (well two negatives really), how far the start was from the bag drop off and then the chaos trying to get your bag back at the finish. But would it deter me from doing it again? Not really, I'll be back in 2017.
Through the finish area I was greeted as always by my rock and no matter how many finish lines I cross now, there is nothing better than seeing Caz smiling back at me, if truth be told, getting back to her (and our boy) along with having Lloydy in my ear all the way round, gives me all I need to get it done. I couldn't do this without her and trying to do Lloydy proud is what drives me on.....
|Finish Area Selfie x|