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One for the Trophy Cabinet (ha ha)

3 April Marathons Done

I cannot say that my London Marathon time was good, just inside Good For Age but ~20 minutes slower my Nov 2018 Florence time. I suppose being the 3rd in the month is the reason. And a modest £500+ raised for the MS Trust.

 

Boston Marathon – Done !!

I don’t know how many “you got this John”, “Great Job John” & similar shouts I heard but there were hundreds of them : There may not have been as many spectators out supporting the runners as in London but they were magnificent. From the minute I arrived in Boston it was apparent that this was a Marathon put on by the peoples of Boston & surrounding areas and they owned it. Boston put on this Marathon rather than this being a Marathon in Boston. An experience not to be forgotten.

As a race it was challenging for many reasons the first being that 8 days prior had been my Manchester Marathon and the legs were still tired. But the weather … well that was way off being ideal. The Boston 2018 Marathon had been a storm with heavy continuous rain & strong winds and that is what started the moment I left my AIrBNB to get to the start @ 6.45 am. That carried on until 10am when I moved to the start pens. Fortunately that stopped and everything calmed down to what could have been good running conditions. My shoes even started to dry up at this point but as we began the race the sun came out. Temperatures climbed and the sun came on strong. But the support along the way was extraordinary and the sound at Wellesley College around half-way was deafening – click Wellesley College ‘Scream Tunnel’ to get some idea of what that was like.

I had in mind a modest but achievable 4 hour target but it became clear that this was going to be a stretch, having to take both salts and 2 cups of water at every mile. I subsequently was told that Massachusetts means rolling hills (or something like it) in the language of the indigenous Algonquin people – there were a lot of ups and downs but while my time was slow I can at least claim to have run every single incline & hill, including the infamous Heartbreak Hill. Indeed I wasn’t aware that I had got up that hill until I saw the sign at the top.

By the time I reached the last mile or so I was somewhat sunburnt but then the weather changed with a return of the torrential rain & winds reminiscent of the 2018 race. After finishing I grabbed my race bag, donned as much clothing as possible and made my way to the subway. I was both shivering cold, wet through and sunburnt at this point.

My slow time of 4h 7mins was incidental to the experience but I can at least be consoled by it being a Qualifying Time for Boston 2020 should I be minded to enter ….

It was special. And as a BTW here’s a good You Tube about the course.

 

MS Trust

Manchester …. Done

Done but in a poor time around 3h 54m …. Hoping for better in Boston on Monday.

John @ Manchester comp

Manchester….

MS Trust

Manchester Marathon 2019

The Big Half (half marathon)

It wasn’t half windy – I was getting blown sideways on Tower Bridge – and this did not make for PB conditions !! Happy to come second in my category – no prize money though !!

Ran in MS Trust Vest as a nudge to get my Virgin Money Page up for the April Marathons.

 

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Prize !!

Hampton Court Half Marathon

First Race of the year which I ran more as a fast long training run than an outright full-on race. It felt good and under control with an even pace and a modest speed up for the last mile. Lovely day to run and the race was well organised over a great course. One to do again. Although not the strongest of fields in my category, it was nevertheless gratifying to come first : The web site said something about a prize too !!

Florence Marathon

Well that was wet !! But not as a cold as last year thankfully.

It was pleasing to do a near respectable time 3:39:17 and 7th in my category.

Near End of Year Report

Its not been a vintage year for the longer distances but OK for middle distance.

Marathon times have been poor and while all were inside the London Marathon Good For Age qualifying time, thats not the point. I have used my good time from Florence Marathon 2017 to get places in Boston & Chicago 2019 as well as London. Hopefully I’ll be able to get some good long runs in to get back to where I was in 2017 : Just the one race left in 2018 and that’s the Florence Marathon.

Middle distance events were mainly the Summer League which was a first for me and a most enjoyable one. Good result as I headed the list for M65 runners. Pressure is on to repeat in 2019.

Summary of Races in 2018

I Ultra Marathon

4 Marathons plus Florence still to run (one as part of Team England !)

3 Half Marathons

6 5m/10ks

10 Parkruns

plus some shorter runs & track races