Manchester Marathon 2017



  • The second of my back-to-back HMs today. Wasn't expecting much after last weekend's PB but I did it again - new PB is 1:57.01! (The first 10K of that would have been a 10K PB less than a year ago).

    Even though I'm a bit heavier than I want to be right now (I'm not that much under 11 stone - a lot for a distance runner) the marathon training seems to have really brought down my times. Must be the extra mileage.

    I'll have to target 1:55 next but I'm not sure when that can happen, since I'm likely to go on holiday in September which means missing my favourite Autumn races. Anyway, let's get these marathons done first!
  • Little NellLittle Nell ✭✭✭
    edited February 2017
    Good to see the continued great running by all!

    Fantastic new PB again Cal - congratulations! It's so great to hear of your progress... I remember reading in other threads on the Forums of the challenges you've faced (e.g. torn calf, if I remember correctly) so I'm very happy for you :)

    I've found the same thing regarding putting in the high mileage - something that I'd only ever read about - lots of miles seems to have helped my speed at shorter distances as well. I've just dipped below 7 stone for the first time since my early 20s as I find it very hard to eat enough to cover the calories burned from running... not something I'd ever thought would be an issue! But it does mean that my power-to-weight ratio is pretty good at the moment.

    So - I've got my first ever 20 mile run under my belt (yay!). My legs are a bit tired now but I feel fine. All went well on the fuelling front: gels before the start and then at miles 5, 10 and 15. Managed an average pace of 9:56/mi., which is bang smack in the middle of goal marathon pace (8:45/mi.) + 60-90 secs. Pretty happy with that!
  • 7 stone? Jesus! You really are little! I'm pushing 11 at the moment! (I'm 5'7 but still about a stone up from where I'd like to be.
    Yes I've had a few issues. Started doing local 10Ks in my 40s, then worked up to my first half in 2011 (2:18 - felt like death towards the end!). Had a pain in my foot after doing some sprints a month or so later. Found a funny lump which turned out to be a cyst. Took a year to get that removed on the NHS, so, with recovery, I was out from mid-2011 to Autumn 2012. Got running again in 2013, worked back up to 10 miles and then my mum died. Four months later, dad died too. They were old, so it wasn't unexpected, but as an only child I had to deal with everything, so not much running that year either.
    Had a comeback 10K in 2014 and entered my second half marathon. The tore my calf, as you remembered, so that went out the window.
    Finally managed to get back in 2015, and aside from a TFL strain during early Spring I stayed injury free for the year. Went nuts and ran 8 half marathons (plus a few 10Ks) going from 2:12:45 in March to 2:02:34 at Ealing.
    Decided if I was ever going to do a marathon, it had to be now. So entered Manchester. Early winter training was going well but then suffered a groin strain (and lost my job) in December, so lost a month there, but managed to get back for Hampton Court half in February (2:05, which I was happy with as a comeback race). Got the marathon done, though it was very unpleasant after 18 miles, partly due to the missed month of training. Started doing parkrun and focussed on the elusive sub-2 half. Achieved that in my first half of the Autumn, beat that time again a week later and set 10K and parkrun PBs.
    Which brings us to now!

    Anyway, very well done on the 20 - that's a good pace! I only gelled once during mine (just before 12 miles). I've been doing my halves without gels and it hasn't hurt me but I expect to need them for the marathon since I'll be on my feet more than twice as long. I daresay you need them more since you'll have a lot less fat to fuel you than I do. :D
  • So, despite the fact Thorpe had a hillier course than Hampton, I actually felt OK enough to go for a little recovery run (4 miles) today. This might just be the first time I've ever run the day after a race.
  • Nice one Cal and well done Little Nell (make sure you eat well - I am a big advocate of milk / calcium for recovery/ ensure bone density if you can stomach it). Another 73 mile week for me.  Yesterdays 22 mile run done in 2 parts as felt ill for the first one (12 miles) but felt absolutely fine for the second part (10 miles). I was mildly hungover - first few drinks on Saturday for 2 weeks. Bideford half marathon for me now Sunday and hoping to get under 1.25.
  • NickW2NickW2 ✭✭✭
    Cal - great half PB. I'm sure 1:55 would be there for you if you hadn't raced one the week before, but like you say time to focus on the full distance.

    Nell - 7 stone, wow even if you're short that's light - I'm nearly double your weight (tend to hover around 84-85 kg which I think is just short of 13.5 stone. I am fairly tall though at 6 ft 3. Well done on the 20 miler.

    I had a poor run yesterday, did 18.5 miles, probably a bit fast for the first 10 and then at about 12ish felt like I was really struggling. Was meant to be all at around MP but decided there was no value in pushing myself for 8 miles so slowed right down (about 1.5-2 min/mile slower) and ground out the last 6 miles. A bit confused why I felt so bad (although I was a little fast, I was slower than my pace from a recent half marathon), though there's a number of possible reasons. Only real positive was that I got the miles done, and it's a bit of a reality check on potential marathon pace - will now definitely not be aiming better than 3:29:xx.

    Legs felt pretty good afterwards but annoyingly I have somehow tweaked my back while getting ready for work this morning, which may make squash interesting this evening!
  • Nell - well done on the HM PB. I'd say you were on course for sub 3:50. I ran a 1:45 HM in training for Brighton last year, then got a bit injured, but then went on to run 3:54. It is difficult to predict how much you'll slow in the later miles when its your first though, but it sounds like you've got the right base. Fingers crossed! Hope the 20 went well...

    Good mileage and pace this weekend Si and Daz - well done! 

    I'm still not completely free of the lurgy and in resting at the end of last week I seemed to develop a niggle in my hip. Yesterday I was booked to run the Marathon Day Marathon down in Kent but was very nearly a DNS because of the illness and the niggle. I decided to give it a go because a) I'm stubborn and b) I decided that I would rather get a reasonable long run in and be a DNF than a DNS.  The hip was niggling from the start and it was insanely windy, which meant I was having to work hard to stay upright at times (by mile 15 my upper arms were throbbing from using them to balance myself!). I had only ever planned this as a training run for Manchester so I ran the first 20 at a  comfortable long run pace and was surprisingly on course for a sub-4 at that point. But I then reminded myself that this was NOT my goal race and did a run/walk recovery for the final 6.2 to finish in 4:14:01.

    Bit achey today and the hip niggle has really tightened up after a 5 hour drive back home last night. Think it is my adductors. Seeing my physio on Thursday so hopefully he'll have something insightful to help me out. I've done three 20+ milers now so I wouldn't be distraught if I didn't get another one in before the big day. 

  • More good running from everyone - not long now until we're starting to taper!

    Nick, I'm not sure an 18.5 miler could ever be described as a bad run, but know what you mean! Are you following P&D? I was down for 18 miles with 14 at mara pace, but only managed 12 in the end as my body and mind had had enough by then. I'm putting it down to general fatigue and my body letting me know that marathon training is tough. It's funny how quickly it becomes the norm and you expect to put yourself though a ridiculous number of miles in during the week then feel disappointed when you can't maintain a speedy long run! Hope the back is just a twinge and doesn't cause you any bother.
  • NickW2NickW2 ✭✭✭
    Well done on the marathon training run Rachey, sounds like it went really well for you.

    DPJ, I know what you mean, and deep down I am pleased that I toughed it out and did the distance as I could have bailed earlier. I am following a MyAsics plan, it is pretty low mileage overall (around 25-30 miles per week) but I usually struggle to find the time for more than 3 runs a week so it suits me. Good 18 miler from you, not sure 12 or 14 at MP makes much difference in the grand scheme of things, other than for your confidence (that's what I'm telling myself about my run, anyway!)
  • Nick, I'm sure I have sub 1.55 in my future but I'd have to run at 8:45 pace, which is faster than I'm comfortable with at the moment. I'm around that for 10K right now, so yeah, it's there, but not quite yet. After all, I only broke 2 hours for the first time in September.
    Anyway, well done on getting the 18.5 done, even if it wasn't the pace you wanted. We all have less than stellar runs. The main thing is that it's miles in the bank.
    Rachey, that's a really good result considering you ran/walked the last bit. Take care of that hip!
    DPJ - yeah, I think we're all quite tired now.
    I had a lousy sleep again (I always sleep like crap after a race, but then again last night, which I will put down to hormones. I'm 49, almost 50, so mine are all over the shop.
    So whilst I didn't feel like going out at all because I felt weak and tired, I got 6 miles done. Told myself if I could run 6 miles when I felt a bit rubbish, then I'd be better prepared for those last miles of the marathon.

  • Hi Cal, I'm sure you can improve your times, regardless of age, it will merely take the correct adjustments to your training; focusing on your weaknesses and training aspects that you may not have introduced as yet. If not already - join a athletics club or look at on line support.

    However, it is notable that you have achieved a couple of PBs recently, whilst in marathon training, which is testimony that you have scope to improve yet further. This is because your body should not see the gains of your training until you have had a period of recovery which occurs during the 2 weeks' taper. Subsequently after your marathon you will probably see yet greater gains to your PBs.

  • hope everyones training is going well, seems a common theme of tiredness and niggles over the last few pages. New to all this so guess its just down to high mileage taking its toll.
    After Sundays long run have developed a niggle in my foot on the outeredge of the foot. According to plan, I should be out today but have learnt the hardway in the past and will rest and ice my foot for a few days. Another 20 planned for Sunday so hopefully all will be good by then. Just interested to find out when everyones last long run is, I have 2 more 20`s planned with last being on Sunday 12th March then start to taper, that sound about right ?
  • Pete - yeah I'm in a club although I don't do many sessions with them as I prefer to run in the morning. Nice to have company at parkrun and races though. :)
    I ran my first marathon last year and saw my times come down after that. Not sure if it was the marathon endurance or because I started doing parkrun (a parkrun started just up the road from me). I did work on my speed a lot more after the marathon with the goal of going sub-2 for the half, which I achieved in my first half of the Autumn (like last weekend, I bettered it a week later). I had a bit of a crazy Autumn with 4 half marathons, a 10 mile and a 10K within a 9 week period, also setting a parkrun PB on one of the "off" weekends. Then I went back to building up my distances.

    I can definitely go faster, although I do need to drop some weight. I'm not fat but, at almost 11 stone, I'm pretty heavy for distance. Problem is I find it hard to drop weight without cutting carbs, and I run like crap if I do that, so it's a bit of a Catch-22. This is one area where age goes against me, unfortunately.

    Daz, hope the foot is nothing serious. Have you tried rolling it on a ball?
  • Daz - That sounds spot-on to me, its the long runs that really matter. Give the foot a little massage too. 

    I have 2 hm races for the next 2 Sundays which I will race and add on a few miles warmup and a 5 miler at the end to give me 20 miles or a small bit over and then taper.  Lots of injuries around, just 2-3 weeks now not to pick up an injury hence today's 2 × 6 milers on grass. 
  • HI Cal , great reading your posts, you sound determined and focussed on your running. Interesting how we all end up thinking about times and Pb`s.  I am 50 just after the marathon and to think I will run 26 miles and have ran 20 mile training runs is something I feel is a great achievement. We all shouldn't forget that 20 miles plus is a long way, previously the thought of a 20 mile drive would have tired me out. As for the foot Cal, feels too tender to roll, almost feels bruised, ice is helping though, should be fine for a short run tomorrow.
  • Pete HoltPete Holt ✭✭✭

    Hi Cal, look at your weight loss as a gradual thing and target it by a pond every fortnight or so...that way it is manageable.

    It is tough losing weight when training as you always feel hungry.  However, there are a few tweaks which you can do to trick your brain.

    Before eating drink a half a pint of water.

    reduce cabs and replace with lots of leafy low carb veg.

    use a small plate.

    I have done all these and it does work.

    As noted yesterday, you will see performance gains from the marathon training similar to your last experience of the same happening.

    I am similar to yourself do like to run in the mornings but if you do want to get your half down from 1:55 to even sub 1:50 don't rule out a one day a week track session with your running club. you can ask the coaches for advice on your running programme.

    Hi Daz,

    as Cal has said give your foot a gentle roll on a ball or rolling pin. Mine gets sore from time to time and that is what I do and then pull my toes back with my hand to really stretch it out.

    sometime the muscles/tendons compress which makes it feel quite tender and sore.

    Google foot strengthening exercises and the problem will go away.


  • Daz BromsDaz Broms ✭✭✭
    Pete- once again many thanks for all your help, Simple pastime of running has so many areas to understand, nutrition, injury recovery, etc etc.  Really enjoying the challenge and looking forward to receiving my race pack this month, then it will sink in what's ahead. 
  • Hi everyone! Looked on here for reassurance that I'm not the only one with tired legs and found that plus lots more!  My main concerns, like all of you it seems, are nutrition, avoiding injury and what long runs I should do in the next couple of weeks. My legs are tired because I ran my long run on Sunday on a hilly route at a faster pace than usual, so it's my own fault. I won't make that mistake again...
    Daz - looking forward to getting my race pack too!
  • Cal JonesCal Jones ✭✭✭
    Thanks Pete. I'm usually lighter during the summer (if the temperature gets above 25 it turns my flat into a sauna, so I avoid using the oven and eat a lot of salads). Right now it's all about baked potatoes, though. :D

    Aber Snail - everyone will have tired legs and niggles by this point. It's normal.

    Yesterday was a rest day so I was keen to get out for a run today. I planned a medium run - 10 minimum, with some MP miles in the middle - but I actually did 12.2 miles with 10 of those faster than MP. I set my MP as 10:15 since that's what I need to go sub-4:30, but after the two warm-up miles at went 10:02, then into the 9:50s, then the 9:40s - the pace just kept on creeping up. It was windy too so it felt as though I was running slowly at times, when in fact I wasn't.

    I think I will need to stick with the pacer at Manchester to avoid this happening during the race. Pretty sure I wouldn't be able to maintain that kind of speed for 26 miles! But on the plus side, I seem to have recovered from the race on Sunday.
  • Cal JonesCal Jones ✭✭✭
    4 miles in the drizzle this morning. This was meant to be an easy run and I didn't pay much attention to the watch but it seems I sped up again. Not a crazy amount, but the last two miles were within MP.
    I am planning a long run tomorrow as I am marshalling the Thames Riverside 20 on Sunday.
  • Hi,

    It's getting to that point now, isn't it. I though I might as well put a few comments in as I've been lurking in the thread for a good couple of months (since Christmas?).

    First few days of last week I was in bed with a bad cold, so that had a huge impact on my training performance, and my first 20 miler over the weekend was a sloow 3:23. I wasn't quite sure how it was that slow, but I guess I should blame the illness. Just before the cold, I had a HM long run in 1:49:57 (I put some speed into it), and the week before I had a 19 miler in 2:48. So I'm not quite sure how I managed to do the 20 miler 25 minutes longer than the 19miler. It had to be the illness, though I felt all well and dandy before the run. 

    I had my mid-week tempo run this week and ran a nice 1:02 for my 8 mile tempo run, it seems the cold has left my body and I'm back on form and ready for a 20 miler again tomorrow.

    This will be my first marathon and my aim is to finish it in under 4 hours.

    I'm not sure if I'm going a bit too fast for some of my training, but I'm mainly letting my body lead the way. Hopefully I won't be punished by it. 

    What do you think about massage, the muscles feel quite stiff at times. Do you think it would be more beneficial to have a massage a few days after my last 20 miler so that I'll loosen up my legs for the taper and then keep stretching with the easier runs till the marathon or would I benefit more from a massage a few days before the event? I'm afraid that with the latter, I might get on the track with nice a loose legs which might make me inclined to take up a tempo too high.
    Saying that, I am planning on following the 3:45 pacemaker, so even if fall behind in the last 6 miles, I could still achieve my goal.

  • Cal JonesCal Jones ✭✭✭
    Martin, my masseur will give a completely different type of massage according to the timing. During training or post-race I'll get a deep tissue, which is pretty painful (he does tend to lay off a bit if it's just after a race and I'm extra-inflammed) but very therapeutic. This will last an hour. A pre-race massage, generally done a day or two before the race, is much lighter and shorter and is done to facilitate blood flow and get the muscles ready.
    I'm getting my next deep tissue on the 13th (the day after my last 20) and will then have a pre-race on Friday 31st. I don't normally treat myself to two a month as I have a small income, but since it's a marathon, sod it!
  • Ran with club last night and got a 6 at the front of my pace for a 5 minute effort for the first time ever!  Admittedly it was a slight downhill... and my other efforts were not so fast.

    4 miles this morning in the torrential rain.  I really hope it isn't like that on 2 April.

    Rest tomorrow and then a half marathon on Sunday.  My last half was before my last marathon and was a disaster (I mean the half was a disaster, the marathon was fab).  The previous half I did last Summer and finished in 2 hours and 6 seconds... I really need to get under 2 hours - I have been trying for so long...

    MartinU - I was stalking until this week too!  I go and see a physio every few weeks during the peak and taper of marathon training, just to keep on top of the niggles.  My legs feel really light after, if that makes sense?!  She's a runner, a very slight lady, but boy can she inflict some pain!
  • Cal JonesCal Jones ✭✭✭
    Good luck with the HM, Aber Snail! I used to go to a lady who did ART - she was an Ironman triathlete and holy hell, she used to inflict some pain on me. Had she been an interrogator, I would have told her everything!
  • OuchOuchOuchOuch ✭✭✭
    I am far too mean to go to a masseur, plus the nearest is miles away, so use a hand massage thingy probably 4 times a week, and it does freshen the legs and gets rid of twinges/ tightness.  Good luck tomorrow Aber Snail, rest day here too as Bideford half marathoning tomorrow. May add a 5 mile recovery to the run and a 2m warm-up to give another 70m week (3 in a row, a new record).
  • Cal JonesCal Jones ✭✭✭
    Good luck at Bideford, Ouch! (I'd like to know what your hand massage thingy is - the roller/hockey ball combo isn't quite cutting it, if I'm being honest).

    I'm marshalling at the Thames Riverside 20 tomorrow so I had to eschew parkrun and get my long run done today. This was my second 20 and I got it done quicker than the same run three weeks ago by a couple of minutes. Time was 3:26:08 with an average pace of 10:18. That is very close to MP so perhaps my MP should be quicker? I'm not sure really, this is only my second marathon and I remember the world of hurt that happened after 20 miles last time.
  • Aber SnailAber Snail ✭✭✭
    edited March 2017
    Cal - hope the weather is okay for you marshalling. Forecast here is terrible!

    Ouch - good luck with your half tomorrow! Hope it's not pouring in Bideford tomorrow.

    Yes I am slightly obsessed with running weather  :)
  • Little NellLittle Nell ✭✭✭
    edited March 2017
    Bonjour a tous! I've just come back from travelling in France for work - with absolutely no running done at all (feeling a bit concerned about missing out on rather a lot of mileage!). I did, pointlessly and over optimistically, take my kit, which remained unused for the week!

    Congrats on all the great running by everyone... particularly the long runs, many of which were being done in trying circumstances!

    Welcome Aber Snail and MartinU - well done for "delurking"! :smile:

    I have a massage booked every Wednesday night until the marathon and one more on the Wednesday after as well... I've found they've really helped with my slightly niggley IT band. I'm sure I'll be more than ready for a recovery rub down a few days after!

    Good luck racing tomorrow, Ouch and Aber (hope the weather suits you :smile:), and good luck marshalling Cal.

    I have High Legh 10K tomorrow, so I've just done a little 4.02 miles leg shake out with the second mile at goal 10K pace (7:30/mi.) but I'm not sure how it will go due to my lack of running during the week. The great god "The Plan" says it should be 22 miles tomorrow and rather than trying to combine the race and a long run I've taken Monday off work and I'll do the LSR then instead. Before Manchester, I have one more 20-miler after the 22 I'll do on Monday and Wilmslow HM (which should be an 18-miler, but I think I'll add 5 miles on and complete that on the day)... then taper *GULP*!
  • Daz BromsDaz Broms ✭✭✭
    20 miles done today, absolutely soaked to the skin. Pleased with the time (2:42) but more pleased with how I felt. Last 3 miles had to dig in a little but still felt good. One more 20 next Sunday then taper for me, let's see how this goes then. 
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