Manchester Marathon - Race Report

posted 10 Apr 2014, 02:51 by Enquiries campbeltownrunningclub
By Sarah McFadzean

On entering the Manchester marathon back in October I was given an expected  time of 3:34 on MY ASICS training plan.  No way I thought, if I can get round with out stopping I'll be happy whatever the speed.  I put 4:20 estimate on my entry form.  Roll on to Feb/March and I realised I was a bit speedier than I'd thought so I contacted them and changed my estimated time to 4 hours, as I didn't want to be in the wrong start area.  I knew that to get 'good for age' in London 2015 I needed sub 3:45 so on race day I found the pacer and started on his heels........ditched him after about 2 miles and went out on my own as I felt good. 

I'd had my pasta the night before, porridge and toast for breakfast, sports drink and energy bar in the hour before start, and I had a sports drink with me to sip in the first half and a gel to take every 4 miles or so.  I stuck to my nutrition plan and topped up on the water from the stations in the last half.  I had my last get at 21 miles and couldn't face the last one.  I knew I was going well when I reached 20 miles in 2:40 as I'd hoped to pass this point in about 3 hours. 

Had a slight emotional wobble and pulled myself together for the final 6 miles, which were ok, I had a bit of a tight calf but nothing major.  People seemed to be dropping, limping, stretching, walking more and more from 24 miles on, I kept my self calm as the urge to get a bit excited was tempting and focused on breathing and not letting my pace slip.  Finishing at 3:31:45,  96th female and 23rd in my age category.  Malcs was waiting as per instructions with the protein shake and that was it, job done! 

Had a massage and then went to the hotel for a quick bath, and change and hit the shops, had a pizza and went to the pub. Manchester is billed as the UK's flattest marathon and its certainly not hilly but there are inclines of varying severity along the way.  It was oddly wind for a city at some points and very warm and at others.  There seemed to be supporters most of the way and people were cheering your name and very encouraging near the end which helped! I'd do this one again because the hotels are 5mins walk from the start/finish and it was all so easy to get to. And I didnt have to que for the loo!!