So, I ran my first marathon last Sunday – the Edinburgh Marathon. Although really it’s the East Lothian Marathon, as 19 of the 26 miles are outside the city, and along the East Lothian coastline. Still, the route goes past the village I grew up in, and the coastline is quite scenic.
It was a pretty hot and humid day and the heat really got to me after around 20 miles, but I just about managed to finish without stopping, mainly by running in any available shade, picking up extra water bottles off the road, and taking the pace right down.
The pain in the legs on finishing was noticeably more than any previous running event I’ve done, and the euphoria of finishing didn’t quite cancel it out… indeed it’s taken four days for the quads and hamstrings to stop hurting. My time – 3h 34m 22s (1003rd place out of about 9500 finisher) – was well outside where I would need to be for London (3h 10m) but, after a moment of possible madness last night, I have entered two more – the Lea Valley (Two To Go) Marathon in September, which helpfully finishes about a mile from my house and is very flat, and the Brighton Marathon in April next year, which looks nice and flat, highly organised (they are emulating London by the looks of things) and had rave reviews from almost everyone who ran it last year. Brighton’s also pretty easy to get to and from. I’m not planning on doing more than a couple every year – they aren’t very good for you, and the switch in training doesn’t help the regular running and orienteering.
So now I have a PB that I can aim to beat in the future, now that I know that I can run 42.2km without passing out – my longest training run having been 32.5km.
A friend, Ed, was also up for the weekend and finished in an impressive 22nd place – 2h 48. That’s one time that is definitely out of reach.