Greater Manchester Marathon - UK's Flattest Marathon 2014

So who is doing this then?

As a London Ballot Reject I thought I should try and run a GFA via this race.... ( thats a tall ask - but we have 6 months of training from here )

So whats your goal?


  • Hi agf- I'm in the same position

    Lucky enough to run London in 2012 but would like to have one more go at London 

     3:45 is the target to beat for me

    Think I can do his if I can manage to stay injury free

  • Hiya. Ran Chester Marathon this Sunday. Excellent race in a beautiful city!! Beautiful sunny day though (in October????)...great for the crowds but not for me running!! Training expectations put me comfortably at sub 3:30. Halfway in 1:44, so paced it well. Sun destroyed me and ended up with 3:47, so gutted!!!

    Just spent the afternoon looking for another chance. This seems to the perfect option as it appears flat and fast. Good luck with the training you two and I hope you get your GFA.

  • 12 months of running for me now Manchester marathon was my second race after Anglesey half was my first , clocked 3.57. Really enjoyed It. Since then ran 4 half sand also ran Chester on Sunday, only managed 4.25 I pulled my groin in Shrewsbury half about 4 months ago so only managed 3 weeks training and 1 week taper so was really pleased I got round, fell apart at 21 miles though took me 1.20 for last 5 miles! hey oh it's the taking part that counts image Sub 3.30 in Manchester and sub1.30 in Anglesey half are my goals. 

    Im one of the few who thought manchester (expect for timing issues) was better than chester 



  • Hi, I ran Chester this Sunday and I'm a London reject AND I'm still chasing a GFA!  Until 23 miles at Chester I really thought I might have the GFA but it all went pear shaped in the last, crucial, miles.  So now I have a dilemma.  After some pretty heavy training (for me) pre Stratford in April this year and Chester at the weekend, my plan was always to ease off during 2014 and enjoy lower mileage while working on faster halves.  But that was based on Chester going well!  At the moment I'm not sure I fancy a few more months of hard training.  But, like you say Oatsy, Manchester does sound like a good option for another chance. 

    RR - what were the timing issues in Manchester this year?  I heard 2012 was a bit interesting but thought they had sorted out the teething problems in time for this years race.

  • My local marathon. Did just over 4 hours this year - hoping for a good winter and sub 3-30 in April.

    Course is really good and great support all the way round.

  • I'm all signed up - got my hubby to pay for my entry as my birthday present! It's my home marathon even though I am currently living in Bournemouth. Grew up living in Timperley and Sale, went to school in Altrincham and family living in Flixton so the route is completely amazing for me (the half way point is quite literally at the end of my sister's road!).

    It will be my second marathon - did the Rome Marathon in March this year in 4.17 but man those cobbles and narrow alleys nearly killed me off so looking forward to a nice flat straight route. Am hoping to do it as close to 4hrs as I am (3.59 would be a dream but anything under 4.17 is fine with me!).



  • Yeah I'm in for the third year in a row. I ran 3.37 this year followed by 3.41 in Chester last Sunday, so I have my eyes firmly on the 3.30 prize this time. 

    This is essentially a good event. There were some problems in the first year but this year was much smoother, and the support is a match for anywhere. I'm really glad to see my local marathon becoming well established. And yes, a route that's kind to runners - they said Chester was flat, but after Manchester it seemed positively mountainous.   

  • Ss : a lot of the times were incorrect, take a look on the old thread for the last one page 94 onwards
  • Well, a failed attempt to make London leads me back to Manchester again.  3.11 last time in my first Marathon, I probably don't need to say what i'm aiming for this time.

    I've started uppping my MPW already and stretching out my longer runs in earnest.  A very long, very hard, probably very cold winter of training awaits image

  • Sb-that's actually one of the things I love about spring Mara- no matter the weather I find winter much more bearable abd seems to go faster by getting out in it(image 

    Grew up in Chester and would like to run it ond year. Hats off to all of you who put the miles in in the hot weather- I struggled with training for 2 halves!

  • I think I might be another London reject doing this. I'm limited with dates that I can run so while it's not local this is a likely contender. Torn between the negative reviews about this or the somewhat scary thought of a weekend in Blackpool.

  • siony - I think I agree really, hence the smiling face.  It's just the freezing cold heavy rains and the deep slushy ones that can sap the spirit a tad.  The rest are great image

  • Im in!  Will be my first marathon, chosen purely as its my home marathon so thought it would be nice for my first.  Lived in Alty, Timperley and now Sale in the last 10 years so will know most of the route pretty well.  Looking forward to the winter traning, i prefer it to running in the summer. 

    I have my first half in November this year (Capesthorne) and then ive entered Wilmslow half as well as its on the training plan im going to follow, although being 2 weeks before Manchester im worried it a little too close to push hard in both.

  • 2 wheels - I was thinking of Blackpool as well at first. But having run the Bognor 10k many years ago and a half marathon on the promenade at Brighton, which both had strong winds coming off the Sea, this cost me 2 PBs!!! I am always worried about races on the seafront for that reason. That's why I ruled it out and then found Manchester.

  • I did manchester 2013 found it excellent , well organised, very flat, fantastic support, @london for 2014 but will be back

  • @Oatsy - I hadn;t even considered that about Blackpool - guess it could be a bit grim if it is windy as there would be no repiste on that course.

  • I've just read some of the thread mentioned by  RhesycaeRunner above and I've done events with StuWeb doing the timing before and had no problems. I'm pretty sure the systems could fuck up in any race and doubt lightening will strike twice. Though I know that that is possibly niavely optimistic.

    Also found this link and it seems quite well supported and not to crowded all the way round which is important


    I pretty certain I'm in. I like Manchester and have had some great times up there. This might sound weird but as someone that can be a bit mental at times I have safe places and I have places I hate and I think running my frst marathon in a city I feel safe in can only be a good thing.

  • Hi guys, have been away for a few days so missed the updates. Thanks for the best wishes. Its good to see the thread coming alive already.  

    Its been two weeks since I ran Berlin now - ( I jogged round in 3:54 - as missed the last 8 weeks of training due to bronchitis - that Caught at the thunder run running through the night in a thunder storm etc )....  so after a couple of weeks rest,  I too will start to increase mileage too. I figure that it will be the combined effect of 20 Good weeks of quality training that will help me acheive what I am looking for ...

    I think we have 24-25 weeks to go image

    I managed a sub 1:30 half in March this year - so need to get back to that form/fitness to have a good pop at the sub 3:15 !!

    I am also hoping that is its 1st weekend in April it will still be "quite cool" image

    Good luck in the training in your different targets. I see theres a few going for GFA too..... enjoy the training. 

  • Booked manchester after getti g gfa at chester and thrilled but many suffered in last miles that day! Sun and hillier than expected. Also booked liverpool rock n roll 2 months later but going to stroll round with my chap and just enjoy the bands!

  • Ps did 3:49:40 chester.....can I do 3:45 Manchester? ??

  • RedjeepRedjeep ✭✭✭

    I looked at doing it this year as my first marathon but it was too close to Limerick, which is much more local.

    However. Manchester is my home town so reckon I'll do it next year instead of Limerick. One of the guys I run with paced Manchester this year and loved it. It was his first time in Manchester.

  • AGF. I ran Berlin in similar circumstances, very little training due to a sore achilles then was hit by a cyclist on my way to register on the Saturday! Did it with a  badly bruised calf, jogging then walking towards the end. 4-30-36, about an hour slower than I'd planned when I entered it last year!

    Let's hope we all have better stories from Manchester, although it was still a great experience running Berlin.


  • What training plans do people recommend ?

    going to use the p&d one  I think this time round 

    well done bev-in hoping for 3:45 also

  • I'm in.  Third year running.  4:06 last year (first marathon), 3:52 this year.  Hopefully can get under 3:45.  I am not a huge fan of the course but after running Leicester yesterday (had a DNF at Chester mile 16 last week), Manchester is the Promised Land in comparison. 

  • I have done liz yelling training.....4 days a week suited me and worked to improve on second marathon after 2 years. Its what you put into it but the sessions combine long runs threshold speed and recovery



  • I don't mean combine....I mean include. ..

  • I have done liz yelling training.....4 days a week suited me and worked to improve on second marathon after 2 years. Its what you put into it but the sessions combine long runs threshold speed and recovery



  • I'm in, with the explicit aim of pacing the race properly. If I do, I reckon 4.20, possibly 4.15 is possible: let's see. (Oh, and HeOw: ducking out of FB doesn't mean you can sneak back on here image)



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