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Just been sent an e-mail by someone who has contacted the organisers-they are not strict.
Hey all - I've just signed up for this too. I'm doing Abingdon in just under 4 weeks but my training hasn't been as good as I wanted so I'm giving myself a second bite of the sub 4 hour cherry by entering Luton too!
Mind you, having read the posts, I'm not sure it's a PB kinda course. However, I regularly train on hills so hopefully the slopes won't kill me. If I don't feel up to doing the sub 4 hour, I might just don some christmassy fancy dress and just have a laugh instead!
Michelle, I wouldn't worry, if you've made it that close to the end in around 5 hours, they aren't gonna stop you running I'm sure! In any case, it's on public roads so I guess you could just keep on going regardless!
Hope to hear from everyone soon as to how their training is going etc.
I've entered this one too. I went to school in Leighton Buzzard but moved away 10 years ago so thought it was about time I gave this one a go. I did my first lap course marathon at Boddington earlier this year, which I think was 11 or 12 laps. I did have some worries before hand that I'd find it a struggle, but it turned out to be my most even paced marathon to date, knowing what was coming up seemed to make it easier to stay at a constant speed.
Good luck with your sub-4 attempts Brookie. I finally broke the 4 hour mark at the Robin Hood marathon last weekend, making it in 3:59, and it felt great. Hopefully I'll lower this a bit more at Luton, but I've got Leicester, Dublin and Newcastle before then, so not too sure what my target will be yet. If all goes to plan Luton will be my 10th marathon this year so I think that's the main aim really.
Hope everyone has a good week.
I did Luton last year and got a surprise PB. Torrential rain ceased just pre-start thankfully. Course is mixed, starting in suburban Luton, up a stretch of A5 (which is tough the 3rd time) then a gentle-ish climb along some lanes and back down into suburbia again. I struck up an unusual rapour with the marshalls and thoroughly enjoyed knowing just what was coming on the 2nd and 3rd laps. Hopefully go fast again this year (there, I've said it, now I'll be struck down with some innocuously spiteful ailment on the 25th November!!)
Good Luck to all.
Wow 10 marathons in a year KP - that's hardcore! And you stayed injury free? very impressive.
Luton will be my 13th marathon - best get that number out of the way quick I reckon! Kipper - that's encouraging that you did a PB at Luton - maybe I'll be alright after all.
Run last night not great - felt very heavy and slow - I think I'm fighting off some kind of virus - still, better now that in late November!
Brookie, I'm not quite sure how I've ended up going for 10 really, when I started the year I only had 3 planned and I've never done more than 3 in a year before, but it seems to have spiralled a bit this year. I have managed to stay injury free and I'm definitely fitter than ever. I've managed pb's at all distances except the half-marathon, so it's been a pretty positive year so far, and I'm looking forward to wrapping it up with this one in my former home county.
The difficult thing with relay runners in races is you can't really spot them either, it's easy to get carried away chasing them down, and then they suddenly stop and leave you going!
Noticed that it's definitely got colder on those morning runs this week, if it keeps on I'll have to reach for the long sleeved tops in the next few weeks. Hope everyone has a good weekend.
I think the Luton relayers had an 'R' pinned on their backs to avoid the pacing issue.
Yeah, I noticed it was chilly - stepped out on Saturday morning, stepped straight back in for my glovesies!!
Chilly and windy this weekend - I had my long sleeved top on and a cap which kept nearly blowing off. Managed a steady 18 miles though as my last LSR before Abingdon marathon in 3 weeks time, so at least that's the last one in the bag - now for tapering - my favourite bit!
KP - how many marathons have you done in total then? You must be super fit now. Have you ever thought of ultras or have you already done some?
Once I get a sub 4 hour marathon I'm going to try an ultra.
Hope your training is going well, just to let you know we now have only 60 places left for the marathon, so if you havent put your entry in yet, please send it asap.
See you in December
The wife and I have entered online today - before Elaine's email so hopefully got in ok !
Was aiming for Rutland but missed that one - had been holding off to see how an achillies injury fared so Luton here we come.
Reading race reports appears to be some mixed comments. 3 laps sounds a good opportunity to get the kids to hand out refreshments and give encouragement, so I quite like the sound of that. I am assuming undulating is pretty small hills compared to up here in Yorkshire and I think backed up by the topography map. Would welcome any further views on the scenery on the course ?
Brookie - did 3.54 at Abingdon last year and first Ultra this year so you can do it ! Ultra was Durham Dales Challenge (LDWA event) at 30m and a very different kettle of fish - difficult terrain and it took place on a very warm June day - I think I was about 17th runner in 7hrs 17 so time on the feet is critical in training. Thought about Round Ripon 35 next weekend but decided I hadn't done enough distance in last couple of months.
Wharfy - you've given me hope! I think you're right about time on your feet - I'm not a fast runner but I'm finishing my marathons in just over 4 hours at the minute still feeling pretty fresh and OK - my family say I'm not putting enough effort in - they may well be right, but the way I see it, maybe I can just keep going for a few hours more at the same speed?! who knows.....
You're probably also right about the hills - although even the smallest slope will probably feel harder after 20 miles. I train in the Cotswolds and there are some killer hills on my LSRs, the last one is about half a mile long with a 1:3 or 1:4 gradient and I never manage to run up all of it - especially after 16 or so miles!
I'm pleased it's going to be full - getting excited now.
I think it's a great idea to identify the relay runners for those behind them, as it can be far too tempting to chase the people in front.
Peter, well done on showing the kids you're never past it. I think you definitely have to love running to keep going out in the cold. Although, I do struggle to drag myself out of bed in these cold dark mornings - I have to set the alarm clock earlier to compensate. I love it once I'm out there though, even if I do have to stack the layers up.
Brookie, The RHM was my 15th marathon so I'm still fairly new to them really. I ran my first in Dublin in 2004 and until this year I'd never done more than 3 in a year. I started off around the 4:40 mark time-wise. I'm not blessed with speed so have just chipped away at it gradually. I must be thinking along similar lines to you - my main aim this year was to go sub-4, and I've entered my first 2 ultras next year. I'm doing the Gloucester 50k in January, and the Grantham Ultra 2 day event in March, so will be putting in plenty of long runs over the winter. I hope your taper is going well for Abingdon, are you feeling confident for it?
Well done on your ultra Wharfy. How much did your training for that differ to your marathon training?
Would be great if the race is full, should be a good atmosphere.
Not sure if this will come out OK but link is to my Garmin Connect record of last years run (poor run as didnt have speed i thought I had and last six miles were hard)
But shows both the route and the "hill" as accurately as garmin can. Depends I think on which way teh wind is blowing.
Just looked, Luton is SHUT????
26.2 miles of miserable wet Surrey countryside in December by myself then. Sod the lot of you.
And I know where the BEST cheeseburger, chips and tea on the Planet is.
Might have a go at a postal though, looks like there may be a few left.
should be a nice run in the country...?
KP - I had been doing a number of longer distance off-road runs over the previous couple of years so got used to the pace of these type of events (which for most of us mortals means walking up the steep bits) and running carrying a pack - some events specify quite a bit of kit that must be worn or carried.
Generally speaking leading up to these I just gradually increased the length of the long run at a weekend (up to 20-22 miles max) did some longer runs carrying a pack (9m home form work and occasionally both ways to get 18m on the day).
Leading up to this one in particular I had done the Abingdon mara in Oct 2009, a 21m off road in Nov (Burley Bridge Hike), a 25 m off road in March (Trollers Trot) so had maintained a period of including longer runs and to some degree mirroring the terrain / conditions I would expect.
Still - can't exactly call myself an expert from one hot and sticky ultra but if it helps....
(NB there are some quite good websites with tips on ultra running and training, also funnily enough on the Snowdonia marathon thread there are some people who could give some good tips...)
Hello Nic L
No there arent any offical pacers on the course.