Help - newbie - vlm - at a low ebb

Hi, I am doing my first marathon, the vlm, and I am struggling at the moment. The weather and generally running alone for so long means I am losing focus, and generally not enjoying it. I am meant to do 20m tomorrow, but it is so cold I really don't look forward to it. Last Sunday I managed 17 of the 20, but gave in to the pain/cold/voices saying stop...... My husband picked me up, it was 0C and windy, and I had started to feel the cold and now I am disappointed in myself. Any help? Any advice? I have podcasts ready, think I will try to break it into steps, will try another route...... Thanks


  • One last push and then you can taper down I reckon. The better prepared you are - the more you will be able to enjoy the big day. You did 17 last week - so whats another three ?
  • Hi, I am a newbie and you sound like you are doing amazingly well. Keep it up, you will be so very proud of yourself. Any chance you could find yourself a running buddy? It is so helpful to keep you going. Good luck; (I wish I could run 17m!!) x

  • Mr PuffyMr Puffy ✭✭✭
    Have a look at some of the London marathon videos on YouTube, really inspiring. Lay your kit out tonight and tell yourself it's your last long run in the morning, get up and just do it, come what may, if you need to stop, walk, whatever just do it.

    Can you get husband to drop you off twenty miles away so you can run home, then your tough miles will be on your home turf?
  • literatinliteratin ✭✭✭

    This might sound obvious, but if you are really feeling the cold after 17 miles, you might need to wear more clothes.

  • Many thanks, I am trying to think positively, I had considered getting my husband to drop me off, but only since doing these runs have I realised what a hilly area I live in, and I try to plan my route around them, also possibly a little late in the day. The juggle of kids and work and living in a rural area has meant I have trained alone, but you are right that this is the final push, this time tomorrow I will hopefully be filled with confidence......

  • Those hills count for extra miles if they're that bad. So your 17 might have been tougher than someone else's 20.


    On the day, with the crowds and your fellow runners all around you, you'll be fine! You'll even enjoy it! Go on!

  • Hog-mouseHog-mouse ✭✭✭

    Good luck with your run today.

    If it's any help, you aren't the only one that struggles with the long runs nor are you the only one struggling with the cold.

    Last weekend I struggled with 7 miles, took me 2 hrs to warm up afterward. I was going to do 2 runs but my second run I only made 4.5 miles before I was too cold to run. It was very cold last weekend plus a nasty wind chill. It's a 'lot' warmer today and a lot less wind chill so hopefully the run will be easier.


  • Keren chin up, your doing fantastic and are bang on schedule. Do your 20 miles and I guarantee the lift you will get from doing that will be a massive buzz. One long run left and you will start tapering and then remember how proud you will feel crossing the finish line knowing you put all that hard work in.

    You have done so well and will do it and the fact you have been doing hilly runs will stand you on good stead on the day.

    I wish you all the very best, I'm training for London also so when you run by me say hello!!!
  • The weather has been so utterly miserable for such a long time now, even my training which is generally only 5km has been horrid. I can't imagine how it tough it must be now on people training for doing marathons. You're doing amazingly well. I really think the weather is starting to lift now and come the time, it'll be so much better!

    Good luck!
  • sinbad113sinbad113 ✭✭✭

    Hi All,

    keep going your nearly there.

  • If you've managed 17 miles, you'll be fine..........20 would be better, but unless you are going for a fast time, 17 miles has given you a good long "time on feet", run, and even if you just do that again this week, you will manage the race- I've done marathons on max long run distance of 17 before- it makes the last few miles tough, but it is still possible. Wrap up warm, enjoy!

  • booktrunkbooktrunk ✭✭✭
    Hope your last long run went well! Good luck I'm sure your marathon will go wellimage

    I do all my training alone, and know what you mean. I was great and toasty when running today, but as soon as I stopped I was freezing.

    I hope today went wellimage
  • Many thanks everyone, sorry for not checking for replies. Well I did it. I got podcasts, my gels, sweets to suck on the way round, and I did it without stopping. I am not sure everyone would take a couple of paracetamol on the way round, but it worked for me! I didn't look at my garmin, just trotted round. So 20 miles done, 300m ascent, does that class as hilly, sure seemed it.

    I found the podcasts helped, I seriously hardly had to quell the stopping voices, and near the end, which is actually where I am prone to say 'won't matter now' I kept saying final push, about to taper, how will I feel at the end.... And it worked. I honestly felt at the end, I think I can do this.

    There was also a glimmer of sunshine, ah hope for spring
  • booktrunkbooktrunk ✭✭✭
    Congrats Keren.... Now it's all just relaxing and looking forward with excitement to the day!
  • booktrunkbooktrunk ✭✭✭
    My first and only so far was a lot smaller and the crowds were a lot smaller and in places just marshals but their cheering alone made me feel great and got me home, so I'm sure it will be amazing in London and you will cruise the extra 6 milesimage. I'm very jealousimage
  • The half marathon I did as part of my training plan, there were 4 spectators!
  • well done

    .it is a bit miserable at the moment to do the long runs on your own..........

     hope the day itself goes well for you

  • KhanivoreKhanivore ✭✭✭

    well done.

    i run alone. i found my 20 milers miserable and couldn't see how i could run a step further. In fact I stopped half a mile short on last weeks one! Today I went out with my headphones on and my favourite podcast (IMTalk) on my phone. I stopped running with headphones months ago because I thought it was causing me to lose concentration and therefore pick up injuries through poor running form. Anyway, long story short, I banged out a 22 miler today and felt ok to continue at the end. I'd say the mind is a bigger roadbloack than the body. You sound like you are ready for the VLM.

    See you there! It's my first marathon too image

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