Virgin London Marathon 2011 First Timers



  • Hi everyone!

    Another lovely day.. bit cold.

    Long run(12 miles) this morning but had a bit of a wobble... altho when i went out it was ok the motivation for the first time in a while wasnt there! And i got to thinking what will it feel like when i have to go out and do 20 miles in worse weather! Scary.   Run turned out ok in the end.

    For some reason... i decided to try out an energy gel. For previous 1/2 M i have used sports drinks but as they make me feel sick at around 10 miles i thought i would do the next race on water! Then some thing told me to try a gel because i will have to for marathon at some stage. I didnt find it sickly at the time but after my run i did feel a little sick( nothing that a glass of red wine wouldnt fix)....not sure if this was the gel or the fact that i was pushing it on the last mile.I`m not sure it made much difference to my energy levels!

     Anybody got any views/ ideas on a good gel to use? Maybe i should just stick to water!

    Well done vds.... that means you CAN enter Norwich then!!!!

    Hope everyone has a good week

  • Hi all,

    Re: Mike's message, i'm Nisha and running for action medical research. 

     Well done on your long run vds, I only went out for 7 miles this morning.  I'm on call so didn't want to venture too far away.  Went out by the canal and not too many people around which was nice.  Don't know if it was the colder weather or the amount of food i've eaten this weekend amidst diwali celebrations but took me longer to get going than usual!

    Matty's mum - I have always used the SIS Go Gels and have got on really well with them, but only in the tropical flavour.  The other's make me feel a bit sick so I guess its a case of experimenting and seeing what works for you.

     Now just relaxing with a cup of tea and a copy of runner's world, perfect sunday afternoon! Might have a look at the fetcheveryone website as well....

  • Hi all

    I'm a first timer - pretty nervous but up for the challenge! Got a ballot place and am running for Everyman.

     First run ever of over 6 miles this morning - managed 7.5 - not great but gotta start somewhere!!

  • Hi all and welcome newcomers!

    Been away for a few days holiday in Spain and now back in freeezing Scotland! Tan has disappeared, I have the (man) cold, haven't run for about a week and I generally feel pretty crap!

    Got my CLIC Sargent running pack through the post though so that has made me feel a bit better, makes me feel pretty pathetic complaining about my cold when there are so many others worse off than me.

    I'm going to try an easy 20 minutes tonight to try and sweat it out, hope to be back in my stride by the weekend!

    Nisha / Matty's mum- I use SIS Go Gels too (tropical) only started using them  in the summer but did find they made a difference to me. I didn't like using energy drinks durting a race as they made my mouth all dry and sticky but with the gelsI could wash them down with water. I take one every 6 miles, which works for me but will be trial and error for everyone to see what suits best.

     That said I haven't had one recently as I can't remember the last time I ran 6 miles image

    Anyway, moan over, keep running everyone! image

  • PS - Cosmic, not decided for sure yet but I think I will be following the RW 16 week plan also so will be good to hear about your progress.

  • Morning All, After the initial euphoria of getting a place.. I hit a low last week. image

    Sports Physio recons the calf niggle is in fact a splint (a lot higher up than than usual) so no running for me since last Tuesday....image Diet has been rubbish so now feel sluggish too.

    Reading all your enthusiastic notes & chat about gels & drinks & all the fab causes you are running for has fired me up again so I'm going to the gym for a spin and a Sauna tonight. Afterall I am a Marathon Athelete in training & I need to worship at the temple of me!

    Nik - Well done 7.5 is very respectable at this stage of the game, well done you!  

    Found this 23 week plan that I think I'm going to start on as I'm struggling a bit with this training hiatus. I know some of you are also feeling like you are kicking your heels until you start the 16 week plan & it looks like a pretty good plan & nice slow build.. For anyone that might be interested, have a look at:[b]Marathon[/b]+Training+Plan.pdf   

    Bye for now..

    p.s. fell asleep at yoga last week. Woke up to find everyone rolling their mats up! Now that is what I call relaxation image  


  • Sorry, just noticed the link won't work so type 23 week Marathon training plan in Google & click on the sportstoursinternational link for the PDF. Good advice in "The Big One" paper that acompanies the plan too.

  • hey everyone image

    although my 16 week plan does not kick in for another 5 weeks have started building the miles up now , slowly but surely !! 13 miles done last week in 3 runs with a 5.3 which is the longest i have run for months ! am aiming for 4 runs this week with a total of around 16 miles and a couple of cross training sessions in between . an inspiration for us all should be one of the chilean miners who ran the new york marathon yesterday in 4hours 50 !

    Hope you manage to get back training soon Helen

    Good to see some new people posted in here as well , think its gonna help us having this thread to encourage each other image

  • Hi everyone.

    How is the week going?

    I'm taking it easy myself having had 3 weeks of steady running and distance buildup. Plan to get back into it again this weekend.

    Read the comments on gels with interest - I was hoping to avoid these and just use jelly babies myself (I love jelly babies and so to have a good excuse to scoff them is great).

    Mattys mum - yes I think I will run the Norwich half. It will be my first real race!

    Welcome back from holiday Miggito!

    Good to hear you are getting some motivation back Helen - do you know if you were snoring when you fell asleep during Yoga? image

  • vds, no, fairly sure I didn't snore, but I had started to dribble! Don't you hate it when that happens?

    Good news is I went out for a half hour trot on Tuesday, no pain. So I'm planning on a 3 mile Treddie session this evening having worked out the "newfangled video display ipod thingy" so it's an episode of House... a few crunches & a sauna for me.

    I'm with you vds, I've tried gels, but I'm not convinced I felt the benefits & I did find them a bit odd digestion wise & yes they made my mouth dry too. So like you I prefer Jelly Babies.. Any excuse.image  


  • Thanks vds - good to be back except have been working pretty much non stop catching up on things!

    I had an absolutely amazing run last night - as I said before started running in POSE, which was knocking hell our of my calves but done a 30 minute jogging session last night and only a slight twinge so guess my calves are builiding up to the required strength now  - have been doing a lot of calf strengthening exercises as well. It makes such a difference to be able to walk after a run image .Only been running this way for about 3 weeks now so felt really good as was getting quite frustrated with the pain, missing doing long runs at the minute though but not so naive as I was a year ago so will take my time!

    Good to see your pain disappearing as well Helen, I am a fan of the gels but am interested in the jelly baby theory as have heard a few people talk about them! Anyone know how many jelly babies you need to eat to get the same suppossed effect from a gel? Answers on a postcard - I'm genuinely interested!

    Catch y'all later image

  • Hi Everyone,

    I managed to get a club place last year but ended up defering due to injury,broken metertarsal whilst out running.

    Anyway, its my first time at a full marathon and not sure if excited or scared sh####ss.

    I was wondering how you other people are training, have you started marathon training or waiting until January to start

    I've done plenty of half's, last being GNR, finished in 2.02. 

    I'm currently doing 3 sessions a week, normally about 20 to 25 miles per week.

  • Im doing it as a first timer, I actually hoped to do it in a few years but I applied because I was told me you never get it on your first time and they do statistics to see how many times you have applied. I thought this would help me get it in a few years, and what happened I get a ballot place, first time. image
    Im running for macmillan simply because a lot of the other charitys I called failed to give me the time of day.

    Im currently doing my running based on time to ensure I can spend a fixed period on my feet rather than fixed running distances,  Im currently pretty slow and running at a pace just over 8 minute per miles.
    my last official timed offering was a 10k which I completed in 49 minutes.

    I can't say im really excited about it though, I expect this will change on the day however.

  • Squeakz wrote (see)
    Im I can't say im really excited about it though, I expect this will change on the day however.

    lol @ Squeakz - I am totally excited about it!!! Looking out the window at the black sky and p1ssing rain looking forward to getting up at 5.30 tomorrow to get a wee run in - maybe I am just mental though image

    There are various different levels on this thread so I wouldn't say 8 minute miles are slow (I run around that and think I am pretty fast image) Good on you for raising funds for Macmillan - especially as you got a ballot place.

    Hi Andy, my last "race" was the Glasgow 1/2 in September and been pretty much injured since then so just starting to get the miles back in now - I will have done 9 this week after tomorrow image Aiming to be back up to around 15 - 20 a week before Xmas and then hitting the training plan in January too. Good luck with your training!

  • Miggito wrote (see)

    lol @ Squeakz - I am totally excited about it!!! Looking out the window at the black sky and p1ssing rain looking forward to getting up at 5.30 tomorrow to get a wee run in - maybe I am just mental though image

    There are various different levels on this thread so I wouldn't say 8 minute miles are slow 

    .Lol yup I think getting up at 5:30 counts as pretty mental in my book, but good on you I wish I had that kind of motivation. I work with a couple of guys who do triathlons and ultra's and the speed they run at is amazing, perhaps they are really fast rather than me being as slow as I think, who knows.

    Im getting sorted though, I have my fueling sorted out allready having tried a large number of gels nd other things. I don't get on with the popular jelly baby idea though, I find chewing them effects how I breath.

    Im currently doing about 20-25 a week at the moment and want to up this before xmas if everything goes to plan.  Are you following a training schedule?

  • Hello Everyone- Im also running the Virgin London Marathon 2011 (First Timer).

     How is everyones training going? image

    Im currently doing 3 x 7mile runs a week at the minute which I hope to up before the "real" training begins!

    I have a Q. though..... Some days i feel fantastic and could run alot longer, and some, im tired and feel sick, mostly after a run I have found difficult- I suspect this is down to days where I a not taking on enough fluids, but i cant believe how much it knocks me for six! Anyone else get this?

     Aimee xxx

  • Squeakz - I'd love to be running 8 minute miles - currently running at about 10 mins so ultra slow!!

    My other half is a big cyclist and has got me a powder carb / electrolyte drink by Torq to have while running - it tastes great and I'm certainly able to run further for longer (or am I just getting fitter??!).  Not sure about gels - bit of a funny texture - def prefer jelly babies but I do struggle with the breathing & chewing - not a pretty sight!! image

    Got my first sponsors in on my fundraising page so am delighted - good motivation! I also got a ballot place first time - totally unexpected - and hopefully can raise a decent amount of cash for Everyman too.

    Great to hear everyone's tales......

  • I've got the Torq powders as well nik40, I have the natural pink grapefruit flavor which is lovely.
    I know what you mean about the texture of gels, some kind of remind meof the syrup I put on top of ice cream as a child.

    Good on you  for getting the first sponsors in image

     Aimee - I used to get a sicky feeling on the odd ocassion. Now I have a routine where eat a banana or cereal bar an hour before going out and make certain that I always take an isotonic drink with me.

  •  Howdy all

    Little N/ Miggito - thanks for the advice on gels i will check them out.

    Vds.. i find jelly babies not quite so nice as usual in a race and you have to carry and access them but hey seeing as you will be at Norwich once i find out your number i will know where to come for a sneaky jelly baby!!! Very exciting for your first race... what time are you expecting? Hope the weather isnt like this.

    Squeakz... you slouch only 8 minute miles!!! If only i could run that fast!!

    Aimee - i think feeling sick is pushing yourself too hard. I just been at a cross country relay event with my son - he was the runner in the lead on his lap and was sick several times... didnt think about stopping running! and giving up his lead! So feeling sick has surely got to be better than that!!!!! Hope i dont follow in his footsteps in April!

    Helen... glad you are getting back into it again.Good excuse not to run in this awful weather tho

    Have good weekend all

  • He he, thats a very determined son you have there mattys mum- I normally feel 'off' for a whole day but soon settle back down.

    I need to try some of these gels, the VLM uses Lucozade ones I hear?

    And 8 minute miles squeakz? Thats a pretty good pace!!!!!!! Also how do you have the drive to get up at 5:30 am? I function better around the 'other' 5:30 (i.e after work) but i would love to be able to drag myself out of bed at that time. Hasnt happened so far though lol image

  • Just come back from my long run of about 10 miles and got a little bit of cramp in my hamstring, its really frustrating. It seems to be the only thing I need to overcome at this time. I feel really good in myself and can hold a conversation all through the distance. I feel full of energy at the end.

     Aimee, I would most certainly advise buying a selection of gels before hand and trying them if  you are considering using them as they vary greatly in consistency. I have found that some were so difficult to digest for me personally that I suffered cramp or indigestion.
    Its also quite interesting to see how things such as packet design massively effects use, some packets I physically were unable to open while running, while others opened easily. -- It's personal preference and worth investigating different products.

    It's Miggito who looks forward to getting up at 5.30 tomorrow to get a wee run in, not myself.. I have so much respect for dedication like that. I generally rise around 6:00 and head to the gym. I do however prefer the early mornings as later in the evenings I simply want to wind down and chill.

  • morning , how is everyone ? went out for a 5 1/2 mile run before work this morning , am pleased with how things are going so far , gradually building up the mileage every week . 3 runs last week 12.76 miles and three this week 14.75 image  nice steady build up is the key I'm told !

    hello aimee , squeakz and andy  , welcome to the forum

  • M-JM-J ✭✭✭

    Hi all

    This will be my first marathon, got a ballot place first time and I will be raising money for Shelter.

    7 miles this morning. Following a Garmin plan . Downloaded a 16 week plan to my 305,  added a few weeks and adjusted some of the days I will be running to allow for weekends/ nights out I have planned over the festive period. I completed a half in September but am certainly running alot more now- 5 times a week. Altough as yet my longest run since the half has only been 9 miles- it steps up pretty soon. Am quite nervous about the long runs but fortunatley I live in a lovely area (Wiltshire) and have some great quiet places (traffic free) to run. The Garmin trainng plan hasd a max distance of 20 miles for a LSR but I would really like to do a couple of 22 milers before the marathon- psychologically I think I need to do this. What is the max distance everyone else is doing before the mararthon? I don't want to burn out but I think I will extend those 20 milers to 22.


  • Hi M-J

    nice to see another new face image on my plan it has two 18 mile runs as the longest , I think every plan has different max lengths , may tweak mine to do 20 instead of 18 ? as you say may be the barrier I need to go through .

  • Morning All!

    Just got back from an 8 mile trot down to the seafront & back via the War Memorial averaging 10 minute miles in the pouring rain. Felt good. Do you know I quite like running in the rain, don't get too hot & there is something quite satisfying about getting home dripping wet.. Maybe I'm just a tad odd?

    I'm following a 23 week plan with a slow build up - I'm better motivated when I'm following a plan. I've done 18 miles this week, 3 Tuesday, 4 Thursday, 3 Friday & then the 8 this morning.

    On the great Jelly Baby debate - I've used both SIS Gels & Jelly Babies, prefer the later. don't necessarily chew though, they disolve quite pleasingly. Do use Lucozade Sport drink though & I'm not keen so I'm gonna try the Torq Powders, ta.

    Aimee - Maybe you should mix it up a bit, perhaps you'd be better doing 2 x 3 miles, a 4 & then a long weekend run with a day off before & after the long one. Also, yes lack of water WILL make you feel shocking! Try to drink at least 2 litres a day, I make up bottles of squash & sip it throughout the day. It's a fag, but I do feel better!   

    Morning squeakz take it easy on that ham string - Ouch! Hurt mine last year (one leg longer than the other, sorted by a trip to the Osteo/Chiro bloke,) but long road to recovery. Wish I'd got it checked when I first felt a twinge! 

    Nik I'm with you 8 minute miles, I wish! 10k maybe, but any longer & I need to go slow.. Been doing a bit of threshold training on the Treddie though & am definately feeling the benefits - Makes the treddie time less tiresome to!image

    Well, my lovely husband has just suggested Roast at the pub.. image Byeee

  • Hi

    well done Mike....I`m now tapering to Norwich half 2 weeks. Went for a 12 mile run this morning before it rained... it was nice to think that will be the last 12 mile training run this year! It was more of a steady run rather than a LSR... today i didnt go with a gel just water. Plus side i didnt feel sick but down side i had less energy last few miles. Got plenty of time before April to try out a selection of gels.

    Its raining now, footie is on so thats me for the rest of the day!

    Have a good week everyone

  • M-J

    I am gonna extend the 20 mile runs to 22 too! Just feel good to get slightly nearer the 26

  • M-JM-J ✭✭✭


    yes...that's what I thought re the long runs....if I get it into my head I can 22 miles I'll be thinking only 4 miles to go!! Well that's the plan anyway.

    Interesting talk around the gels. I've never used them but know I'll need to. I don't like running with a bottle, which will be fine for the marathon as there are plenty of water stations but I may have to carry one for my longer runs in training or conveniently place them at several points along my route before I set off. The furthest I have ever run is a half and for that I didn't use any gels but I did have some dextrose sweets at miles 6,9 and 12. After trying jelly babies and beans in training I found the dextrose sweets easier as I didn't need to chew they just dissolved. Too much energy needed to chew!

    Will give some gels a try after Christmas. My longest run before Christmas is 14 miles and I'm hoping the dextrose sweets will keep me going for that distance again. Water...though I may need to start carrying a bottle. image

  • Hi everyone

    Good to hear about the productive training weekend that most of you have had - despite the rubbish weather.

    I learned an important lesson about lactate threshold this Saturday. Feeling very confident after my first 20km run last weekend I decided to see if I could run the same distance a little bit faster. By 13km my legs were in a lot of pain, finished the distance run walking, soaked and feeling rather sorry for myself. image

    Still I now know what pace to set myself for the Norwich half. Hi mattys mum - might bump into you there. I'll be at the back of the pack, aiming for somewhere around 2 hours 20 minutes.

    I'm also thinking about taking my long runs up to about 22-24 miles in the buildup to next April. I guess there is a pay off though in that if you run too long time wise it can then prevent you being able to get quite so much distance in for the rest of the week.

    Well, rest day today, hopefully another run tomorrow.

    Have a good week guys!

  • hey all,

     Hope everyone's had a good weekend.

     9 miles for me yesterday, building up fairly slowly but actually felt really good the last couple of miles and upped the pace a bit to finish. 

    Am going to follow a 16 week schedule, but add an extra two weeks in case of illness/injury so planning to start mid December.  The plan includes two 18 mile runs, a 20 and a 17.  I hadn't thought of making one o them longer but from what you guys are saying that seems like quite a sensible idea. Think I may enter an organised run for at least one of them - maybe the oakley 20 or gade vale harriers 20, as not sure I would have the motivation if I set out alone!

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