Paris Marathon 2014



  • OROD, here I come.....thanks very much Uisge Jo.

  • That was a very hard day - after running several flat marathons for a time, and several hilly ones for fun, I attempted to go for a time on a hilly one. It rapidly became apparent that that wasn't going to work, especially in constant sunshine with very little shade. Amazing atmosphere though, and some beautiful countryside, which I hadn't expected. And quality bling at the finish, as well as a delightful reflective cape thing with armholes and a hood, which I'll be treasuring. image

    Everything hurts now - time to find some drugs. 

  • JokeybhoyJokeybhoy ✭✭✭
    Well done RR get yourself a well deserved drink,I'm sure you'll find an Irish bar close by
  • DannirrDannirr ✭✭✭

    31 mile done today.  Successful but not really fun.  Developed the same back pain as last week in the London Marathon - I need to figure this out as it may well put the kibosh on the whole Comrades thing.

    It was incredibly hot - 82 degrees.  Despite drinking a lot and using 2 salt tabs I weighed 9 pounds less at the end of it all.  Mercifully at 25 miles I got a call to the hospital, so finished the last 6 on the treadmill once home about 2 hours later.

    Fantastic support from BRF - could not have done it without her for sure.

    Aimed for an 11 min / mile average, finished at about 10:30 /min.  Might walk more in the next one.

  • OrbuttOrbutt ✭✭✭

    Dannirr - awful conditions. What will the heat be like during the event?

    Have you changed shoes or any other obvious cause or is it bio mechanical?

  • Eggyh73Eggyh73 ✭✭✭

    Dannirr - That distance in that heat. Wow, amazing.

    RR - Well done in Boston. Hope you're having a great time over there.

  • Weedy - up the wooden hill to Bedfordshire - that is beautiful! I'm seeing my nieces this week, I think I'm going to say that to them every time they go to bed. 

    RunningRodent - well done on a cracking run. I'd love to do a proper abroad marathon but I suffer really badly with jetlag (even the hour's time difference to Paris seems to mess me up) so I think I'll have to pick the race and holiday carefully. 

    Eggyh73 wrote (see)

    Lloyd - You should enjoy Amsterdam. It's a great event. A great potential PB course too.

    Suze - I hope your training goes well and you crack sub 4 at Loch Ness. I guess terrain preference is a personal thing. I tend to run far better on the flat (mostly as I'm as slow us they come going uphill), but I know others who run far better when there are plenty of undulations.

    Thanks Eggy - I'm learning to love hills but definitely need a bit more practice on mind over matter. 

    yer maj wrote (see)
    KeyserSuze wrote (see)

    Thanks Eggy and MacPerky - I have plenty of time to train for up and down. I'll see how the training goes and make sure that 'enjoying it' is number one on the list. I've found I'm much better at hitting a time target when I'm either not expecting it or someone on the start line says 'hey, I'll bet you could do this in x:xx time' - YerMaj and TheJimBob, I'm looking at you!




    hehe, yes!

    orapidrun wrote (see)

    Nice pic of Boyska there Emmy, is he still quite young? And did I read that right, after his first marathon? You ran a marathon with Boyska? Where, how, wow!?!

    Did anyone else see a guy running the Paris marathon in flip flops? I saw him just at the end of the Bois de Vincennes, he was going really do people do that? Is the next step (ba-boom!) just running without anything on your feet?

    I did - I remember that the one I saw was wearing black ones with his chip tied through the strap, and I worried he'd lose it. 

    Danni, hope the back pain gets better. I second Orbutt - my back always hurts when I need to change shoes. 

    Speaking of changing shoes, I'm breaking in my adidas boosts - did a run last week in them where the balls of my feet were on fire for basically the whole thing. I relaced them yesterday in parallel lacing with loops at the top, went for a 5mile run and felt absolutely brilliant in them - top tip! I think the laces were a bit too pinchy across the top of my foot before that. 

  • Eggyh73Eggyh73 ✭✭✭

    Weedy - Some events to add to the list for me:

    Helensburgh 10k - May 15th

    Clydebank 10k - May 22nd

    Dumbarton 10k - May 29th

    Vale of Leven 10k - June 8th

    Thought I may as well enter the local 10k series as most of them are on Thursday evenings and I'd be out running anyway. I may as well pick up a medal and a Mars Bar for my efforts!

  • PC -PC - ✭✭✭

    RR – Boston results are not ratified by the IAA so I thought it was ‘easy’ however after reading your comments and other reports it appears an extremely challenging course.  Well done.  You have an interesting bucket list, Ethophia last year, Boston, Comrades in June, what other races have you done ?

    Dannirr – RR ran too fast during her 31 miler, sounds bizarre that you could run too fast on training runs which you completed.  I’m sure that after 56 miles the importance will show.  I can’t wait for the ‘experts’ to discuss the weight loss which should be an interesting subject.  June is winter in SA but could temperatures climb as high, I have read reports that temperature variation is a problem however I thought it was due to the cold start and certain sections which are sheltered.  Congratulations on another 31 miler under your belt.

    I read back but didn't find time to post.  Someone called Peter (?) posted about his sub 3 in Paris which his family couldn't understand so he wanted to share it with us however it may of got lost in the Paris race reports.  Well done Peter if you are reading this.

  • Floor sanding. Been doing lots of it over the Easter weekend. One of the machines is like a big lawnmower, easy enough to use although heavy to carry up stairs. The other machine, a hand-sander is also very heavy. I have spent hours stodd over it, swinging it around the floorboards. My hamstrings feel much worse than if I'd run a marathon. And my shoulders. Agh, achey achey. No time to run still.

    Big congrats RR on another fine run. The hills in Boston sounded unexpectedly difficult. How are your quads today as it is predominantly downhill isn't it? Tough! I'm wondering for you too Dannir as you are both preparing for Comrades Marathon, if you are doing any specific hill strengthening training?

    Picklelilly - good luck with sorting out your tendons on the OROD. Remember you were going to post some info about how you had progressed your training to become the fast woman that you are....? I think some people are eagerly awaiting your thoughts.


  • E mmyE mmy ✭✭✭

    Morning all!

    Back from a lovely weekend in the UK.

    orapidrun wrote (see)

    Nice pic of Boyska there Emmy, is he still quite young? And did I read that right, after his first marathon? You ran a marathon with Boyska? Where, how, wow!?!


    He's 20 months old in this shot I think. He's lovely - yes - he's already done 2 marathons. This was done in january. I planned to only run 20miles with him in his training but he just wasnt tired so we took the last 6 miles "slowly" (read: he decided to chase ducks everywhere).

  • PC - my other races have included Lochaber, Isle of Man and Beachy Head, as well as the ever so exotic Croydon Ultra. I like to get about.

    TD - the answer is I have started hill training, but I probably should have started it earlier. I'm looking at my splits from yesterday, and they were a bit of a surprise. It looked like a classic 20 mile blowup, but i was actually feeling pretty rough much earlier than that - I'm astonished I was still on track for a four hour finish at 25k. In all honesty, it was harder work than it should have been, and I'm still trying to work out why.

    KS - I've not really switched to local time, because I'm I only here for 4 days. So I've been going to bed really early and getting up early, by their standards. Made it much easier on race day, and should make it easier when I get home.

  • DannirrDannirr ✭✭✭

    I have little doubt that my back issues are mechanical - poor posture, tight shoulders.  I always try to do a little arm and shoulder stretching at every mile (while running) but it's clearly not enough.  I need to make major form changes - just not sure how!

    Temperature at Comrades will be around 34 (1C) at the start, but by the time we get to about halfway we'll be up into the 70's and perhaps higher.  Thats why I went out yesterday as late in the day as I did.

  • Race report from Boston

    Having not run Boston before, my experience this year may be different from other years, as after the bombings this was a very special race for many people. At the pre race party I spoke to a woman who had been injured at the finish line, and hadn't run a race since. She felt she had to do it or she wouldn't race again, but she wasn't looking forward to the finishing stretch and was afraid she might freeze. She was hoping the crowd would get her across the line - I'm sure they did.  

    The start is surprisingly low key for such a big race. We were all bussed out to Hopkinton, on a fleet which seemed to consist of every school bus in Massachusetts. Hopkinton itself is just a small town in the middle of nowhere, and the race is, I think, the only thing that ever happens there.   The 'runners' village' was a tented area with food, drink and inevitably not enough portaloos. Because there were only runners and organisers there, the atmosphere was rather calmer than it had been at the expo and the pasta party. I had worried  it might all be a bit overwhelming, but it was fine.    We had a couple of hours to wait, then we were called up to the start according to our pen numbers. The organisation was really remarkable, getting so many people to the start (there were 6,000 extra this year).

    The start is along the main street - imagine the set of the Witches of Eastwick. As it was a rolling start, I almost missed the timing mats - then we were off.   I hadn't expected the route to be so pretty, especially in the early stages. The countryside is lovely, and it's real New England - lots of painted wooden houses. I tried to hold the pace back, although the downhill at the start made it hard. One difference about Boston is that they are pretty diligent about which pen you start in - and because you have to submit proof of your time, it means the people in your pen are running at your pace, not wildly optimistic as they can be at other races. So there wasn't much dodging and weaving.  

    It became apparent early on that the hills were going to be an issue. Although overall downhill, especially in the first half, there's a lot of uphill too.  I was getting a little concerned that I was starting to feel it in my legs about 7 miles. It was also very sunny too,  with minimal shade. With an 11 o'clock start, that meant we had the heat of the day. It was forecast to be about 18 degrees, but felt warmer.   

    We ran through lots of villages, where the support got bigger and bigger. There were a lot of signs held up - can't remember them all, but part from my favourite 'go random stranger' I noticed 'fart - you'll run faster' (bit of a high risk strategy that) and 'kiss me, I'm 6 foot tall' (girl who clearly wasn't).   

    I was holding the pace I did at Barcelona, but I knew I was working harder. I had Perpetuem with me in two small bottles, and drinking water. No digestive issues at all with the Perpetuem, but I may need to redo my calculations, I'm not sure I took on enough carbs. Towards the end I was necking Gatorade, which I never normally go near.  

    At one point I ran past Team Hoyt, running their last race. They're a father and son team - the son has cerebral palsy and his father pushes him in a wheelchair. They've done all kinds of running and tri races - look them up, they are remarkable. There was another guy in a wheel chair who seemed to be doing it backwards - not sure what that was about.  

    There was some great gear out there - every kind and colour of calf guards, and lots of women in kind of frilly running skorts. Which sounds awful, but actually looked really good. I think it's the combination of girly outfit plus kickass leg muscles that works image

  • Part 2

    I was really beginning to struggle by about mile 17. I'm still trying to work out why, but I think it was a combination of things - not enough hill training, not enough tapering, and underestimating the stress of travelling so far to a race. But I should have found it easier than I did.  There are a lot of hills between miles 17 and 23. I didn't even realise I'd been up the famous 'Heartbreak Hill' until I got to the top and someone shouted 'you've beaten Heartbreak Hill!'. But there's still a long way to go after that.

    The crowd got bigger and bigger as we got nearer the finish. But even that couldn't keep me going. Coming out of a short tunnel around mile 25 (reminded me if Paris)I had to stop and walk when I started to feel a bit peculiar. I managed to get going again and got a huge roar from the crowd, bless them. 

    Coming down the final straight along Boylston Street, I confess I had a lump in my throat. Just thinking of all the runners who've done the same, and especially this year. All the weekend, and all the way round, there have been 'Boston Strong' signs everywhere. I've never been in a race before where people have shouted 'thank you for running' - and we heard it all the way. The finish straight was where I realised I was taking part in a really historic event.

    The finish time of 4:16 was, I admit, rather disappointing. Especially as I had finished faster in the Isle of Man, where I walk/ran from the start, which is an interesting fact in itself.  I need to process what went wrong and learn from it.

    Best moment? The first few miles, running through the woods, thinking 'this is it, I'm really here'. Worst moment? Somewhere around mile 19, when I took a swig from my Perpetuem bottle and got my tongue stuck in the sports cap. Aargh! Most surreal moment? Being overtaken by a woman singing hymns, loudly.

    And finally, a word about the virtual support. I was so aware, all the way round, that you lot were willing me on. Every 5k marker I knew you'd be watching. You've all been so kind, and so supportive, I genuinely couldn't have got here without you. And especially Scott, who has more or less given up sleep for the past three days just to keep me chatting, steady my nerves, make me laugh and always saying the right thing at the right time. I'm a very lucky girl.

    So, over to you next year Jimbob and Simon?

  • Er, I seem to have gone on a bit. Sorry about that.

  • Radar SalRadar Sal ✭✭✭

    Go on as long as you want RR, great race report!!

  • ATMATM ✭✭✭

    What a great read, RR image

  • RR - well done and congratulations !  That sounded tough. Hope you're recovering well now image and Dannir - long run in the heat - blimey image

    Weedy please put me down for the Cotswold Way Relay on 28th June and the Chippenham Half on the 7th September.

    I thought that after the immediate recovery from my first marathon I would feel super fit. Instead I feel like any speed or hills are really hard work. It's like I've lost fitness by running lots of slow miles and I need to re-discover how to tolerate having my heart rate really thumping again.

    However, loving the longer days and drier trails image Running to work is brilliant; I arrive all endorphined-up and can get half- way through a hospital shift before the smile slips off my face.

  • PC -PC - ✭✭✭

    Great report, continue.... unless it's about STW.  Well done, Rodent Strong.

  • Eggyh73Eggyh73 ✭✭✭

    RR - Great read. I can only imagine the emotions of the runners and the locals in Boston this time around.

  • LloydRLloydR ✭✭✭

    Well done RR. Enjoyed your report, would love to be able to try this race one day.

  • RR - thank you for a cracking race report.  Well done on what sounded like a tough one.  Hope you are having some down time today before the flight back.  Could you post a picture of your medal so we can all drool ?

  • RR - Really enjoyed the report, although I didn't realise it I was crying! Well done on what was a tough one. hope your getting time to rest today. image

  • Et voilà !!!




  • WooHoo! That's quite some medal to own!

  • Wonderful report RR you did fantastic and you should be very proud of yourself.

    Great bit of bling, is it me or have the medals improved this year ?

    I'm now prepping ready for Edinburgh at the end of May and then gonna treat myself to a holiday in the sun somewhere.

    Keep up the good work all, speak soon image


  • JokeybhoyJokeybhoy ✭✭✭
    RR: great report,a US marathon is definetly on my bucket list
  • RR - brilliant race report from a very special runner ,, the memories will stay with you all your life

    , im so glad that i could help you at all and also to be a small part of what you achieved ,, enjoy the experiance and remember to savour every second ,, the pain of the hills/heat will fade and you will be left with some amazing memories

    over to you simon and jimbob for next year,, my late night services are available for a suitable fee   image

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