Shades Marathon Training



    Robert - even if you only stick to road marathons, Windermere and Langdale are great races.   There's a new one Solway Coast marathon that I've pencilled in for next year, that's supposed to be very flat.  Lots of good trail races too but they often fill quickly as it's such a popular area.

    That's a big benefit of not drinking is no hangovers :)  

    Which race is your local trail 50km/marathon?

    Cal - hope you're feeling better soon.  I suppose shingles is one of those viruses that can come back if your immune system is low.

    Big G - are you anywhere near the Giro?

    steven - bloody motorists, so many have no consideration for runners or any other pedestrians either.

    I'm feeling a little better today, throat is less sore and glands are almost back to normal.   RHR still raised but less so.  If RHR is normal tomorrow I might try a little run.  Funny I'm not going stir crazy not being able to run, I think that's because I haven't felt well enough to run.

    I think Steve must be on his hols so will post list as it is now.
    Had this email, I think Big G has entered this too.   I've lost my hotel cost too as I booked a non refundable, seems I'm fated this year with missing races :'(   This Council should be shot :# 

    This is probably the most difficult email I will ever have to send as Race Director and while I know it will cause a lot of distress and negative feedback I know it is the right thing to do for the future and growth of Gloucester City Marathon


    The Gloucester City Council refused our application based on the old route in February because of our requested demand for closures of the A38 for safe crossing of runners.

    This gave us a limited time to come up with a new route, have it officially measured and submit all  the necessary applications for road closures, bridge closures and police support etc..


    However despite submitting the necessary applications we have been informed that a change in legal policy at the council means that our application to close certain roads for the race in August will not be processed in time.  Given the recent social media frenzy over the safety of the route we have taken the decision to cancel this years race. 


    The good news is that the Head of Highways for the council has offered his full support to work with us to ensure that the race goes ahead in 2019 and also that the start should be moved back to the City Centre which has been a cause of much disgruntlement lately.

    We will also be working closely with the UKA to ensure it is once again a fully certified and qualifying race


    What does this mean for you..... Well we have been working very hard since we received the news from GCC yesterday to work out a rescue plan for the runners and our charity partners.


    1. We will automatically transfer every runner into next years race which will take place on Sunday 4th August from Gloucester City Centre. This event has the full backing off the GCC and from our local UKA adjudicator.

    2. We have organised a Full and Half Distance event on a fairly flat off road course nearby in The Forest of Dean which will take place on the same day as this years cancelled race. Entry to this race is FREE for everybody who has entered this years GCM or Half. This race will be fully aid supported and hopefully means the hard training you have put in for the race will not go to waste.


    Whilst this is not ideal we do feel that it is in the best interest of you the runners and the future of this race. Hopefully we will see you all at the Replacement event this August and again taking up your automatic entry to next years GCM


    You do not need to do anything to take up the transfer into the 2019 GCM Marathon but to enter the free event on 5th August 2018 click the info button below. This will give you more information about this transfer and the Free event.


    I have accepted the offer of a place in the Forest of Dean event, but I will probably hate it as gravel tracks :#
  • Cal JonesCal Jones ✭✭✭
    Shades, that's a shame but understandable. At least they've given you an alternative (even if you don't like the surface!)

    Felt more chipper today so I got out for my recovery run. Usually I walk up to the common, jog two very slow and uncomfortable miles while pulling a multitude of faces, then walk home again. But today I felt good enough to do my usual 4 mile route, and whilst I felt a bit tired, I wasn't really sore. I guess I'm getting better at this marathon thing.
  • Big_GBig_G ✭✭✭
    Shades, yes I got the same email. They're really not having much luck with that race, but I'm glad they seem to have support to move it back to the city centre next year. I've lost a B&B as well, which is annoying, but it does appear to be out of their hands. I've entered the Forest of Dean too. If I'm reading that correctly, offering a free race entry to a different race plus deferral into next year's is the best they can do I think. 

    I'm not near the Giro unfortunately. I did look into it but it's not doable. 

    Had a great day yesterday and saw all the sights. I love Rome, but I actually prefer Verona now, just because it's that bit smaller and really easy to walk around. We got a travel card which was a very affordable way to see the sights. In these European cities I always realise how ripped off we get in the UK - over here it's €1.50 for a very good cappuccino in a nice cafe. Lovely. Could have done with an extra night really but had a great two nights. 

    On train to Bolzano now for next leg of the trip. Absolutely stunning surroundings, with mountains all around. This is from the train but pic doesn't do it justice really. 

    Cal - as Big G says an entry into an alternative race this year plus guaranteed entry into Glos 2019 is a very good offer indeed.  There's also a half marathon and they have the same compensation offer.  Not sure if I'll use my Glos hotel room or drive up on the day, I'll await race details first.   I can use the off road training as a long run, but I can already hear myself swearing about the terrain, but the area is fairly flat.
    There will be additional disappointment for some runners that were going to use Glos as a GFA attempt as I think it's the last flattish road marathon before 2019 GFA deadline.

    Not sure if 4 days after can be called a recovery run ;) but great that you feel OK now and are recovering well.

    Big G - great photo.  I thought you would have looked to see if the Giro was near you, the race is getting better and better and Simon Yates is superb, wonderful scenery too.  I was pleased to see Chris Froome win a tough stage.  

    Agree about UK rip off re prices of coffee etc.   I went to a small back street café in Florence and we had coffee and cake for €1 each and that was only about 4 years ago.
  • JellyJelly ✭✭✭
    Big G do you know the distance for the velo Park at Paignton, trying to decide which to tri to enter as both same day one Somerset Road Bike course and other velo track. Distance is 12 Miles. Not sure if being lapped by faster riders on velo will unnerve me as it’s scary how fast the bikes go.  
    Last night return to club went well, did 1k lap session as I could dip out if needed, I didn’t do last lap as was up to 5 mile and didn’t want to increase too quick, fitness wise felt good, still building confidence leg wise. Enjoyed been back out with company. 
  • 1SteveMac1SteveMac ✭✭✭
    Big G - Sorry to hear you had a tough day at Liverpool, but that's still a good time and another marathon done.
    Cal - That's a big improvement over last year, congrats.
    Ian - That's a superb time!!
    Robert - Brilliant time at NDW 50!!

    Did Guernsey parkrun on Saturday, took it easy and finished in 29:30, did a mile afterwards to round up to 4 miles for the day.
    Porridge and coffee early on Sunday for an early start to collect race number and for the race briefing as the race was to start at 7am.
    Weather felt good early on, a bit cool, but temperatures were forecast to rise throughout the day. I felt ready to start while waiting around and had given the GF some times of when I thought I would hit the checkpoints as she was going to travel out to checkpoint 2 to meet me (16 miles in to the race).
    Plan was to get through the first 16 miles to checkpoint 2, not feeling broken as this was the cliff section and then push on for the final 20 miles which were much flatter.
    First mile was on the road through St Peter Port towards the aquarium, so made sure I ran easy but got myself into a good position before the start of the climb up onto the cliffs, job done and then started around 15 miles of cliff paths, which included some steep steps up and down. Elevation was at least 1,000m in the first 16 miles!
    Got to the first checkpoint in 1:35:32 (8 miles at 11:56 min/miles), filled up water bottle grabbed 2 jelly babies and carried on, no waiting around I just wanted to keep moving.
    Similar story for the next 8 miles, kept the effort easy, but it was getting warmer so made sure I kept drinking enough water (with high 5 tablets mixed in). Got to checkpoint 2 (16 miles in total, 10:55 average/11:26 overall) in 3:02:49, arrived with first lady who was running her first ultra!!
    Met the girlfriend here, who had a bottle of coke, which was brilliant, topped up my water, stuck some food in my bag and walked out the aid station after about 10 minutes, which included changing my trail shoes for my road shoes. This was recommend by a few runners from previous years.
    Left the checkpoint feeling good and was surprised to see I was at the "Best Possible Scenario" in my race plan, so was feeling great. Walked out the checkpoint while eating my food, then started to run and clocked mile 17 in 8:04!! I'd left the checkpoint alone and ran for a while on my own.
    Got to around 20 miles and things were feeling tough and mile 21 at 11:20 shows this, especially as this was a flatter section! I think this was a combination of the heat and not enough fuel!
    Anyway, toughed out the next section and after passing 1 runner, continued to run the next few miles alone while feeling a bit down. I had planned to speed up here, but it hadn't happened and my left quad was feeling very tight and I was run/walking to ease the pain.
    Got to the third and final checkpoint at 25 miles in 4:45:48 (11:27 for this section/11:26 overall), tried not to hang around to long, so got moving again. Continued to run/walk and passed marathon distance around 5 hours. At times after this checkpoint it felt as though I was the only runner still in the race, as no one was around!! I got to about 30 miles and called the girlfriend just to chat to someone and told her things were tough, not long after this 2 other runners caught up with me, but after chatting with GF I was feeling better so picked up my pace, passed 50k around 6 hours and then ran a 8:59 mile and was feeling better. Had some lucozade around mile 32 and that perked me up to, caught up with another runner, did a run/walk with him for a bit then realised I was moving faster than him, so left him and carried on.
    A couple of 10 minute miles followed and I was at 34 miles, and knew the end was in sight and was feeling much better now, so picked up the pace and knocked out an 8:52 mile and then 7:43 pace for the final 0.3/0.4 to the end.

    Overall time was 6:42:46 (11:26 overall pace) and I finished 17th/75 finishers (80 starters). Was a bit disappointed as was hoping for 6:30 or faster, but still nice to finish in between my "likely" and "best case" scenarios. It's a beautiful course and definately a tale of 2 races, with trail and climbs in the first 16 miles with flatter running for the final 20 miles. Interesting that I did better on the cliffs than I expected, but worse on the flatter section! Realised that I really need hill work if I want to do any more hilly ultras!!

    The winner set a new course record and finished in 4:19:44!!

    Apart from a few leg issues (calf mainly tight), I don't feel too bad. I'm having a full week of no running, then will ease back in slowly before marathon training starts again!! No recovery runs after the ultra, but did get over 10k steps on Monday and Tuesday while sightseeing in Guernsey and Sark!

    Sorry for the long report, but that's my 5th ultra done!
    Steve -congratulations, outstanding run and top 20 finish.   Sounds like a really tough course, I expect it's quite exposed too.   To finish in between your 'likely' and 'best case' targets is a really good race result.   You're certainly racking up the ultras now.

    You're forgiven for no recovery run, a hilly ultra can trash those legs for a while.

    I've put it on the list as a PB as I don't think you've done that race distance before :) 

    Jelly - Good to hear you're back running with the club and running pain free.
  • Cal JonesCal Jones ✭✭✭
    Steve, fantastic job! Sightseeing is good recovery in my book (hence my trip to Alton Towers on Monday).
    Shades - well, maybe not. I've returned to running on Thursday after my last few marathons and it's always felt like a recovery run as I've not been able to move my legs well. I think walking about on Monday and Tuesday made the difference (I usually do go for a walk, but then spend the rest of the day sitting, so I tend to stiffen up).
    Feeling optimistic so I've booked hot Pilates this afternoon. :scream:
  • 1SteveMac1SteveMac ✭✭✭
    Shades - Correct, never done that distance before so PB it is!!
    Cal - Agreed, it gets the legs moving.

    One thing I did learn is to never underestimate the distance. I think I messed with my head thinking it was only 36 miles, having gone further twice before, but it's still a long way!! Lesson learnt!
  • Steven, well done for severing the motorist, I've always got an eye on them when I'm running too.

    Shades local race is Fairlands Valley Challenge, its self navigation with 2 pages of a4 shorthand instructions but I know the route off by heart having trained on it loads and ran the 50km loop in both directions.  I have a friendly relationship with the organisers and like to share and promote their event when I can on social media the club also have a half marathon that I'm doing in November but its pretty crap as routes go but you're nowhere near glamour in stevenage.

    That's a pretty decent response, a race plus next years sorted.  People will moan but they have tried their best.

    jelly good to see you're pain free again

    Big G even through the train window just imagine how stunning it looks in real life.  I'm not a fan of drinking coffee out due to the cost and I can't justify it... winds me up when the OH has about 5 coffees out.

    Cal whats your next race/ challenge now?

    Stevemac really enjoyed the race report, as you may have seen I favour a long report myself.  I had packed my other trail shoes in case of blisters and my road shoes however decided not to bother with a switch as I went over on my ankle and didn't want to disturb it.  Well done for getting 10k steps in, just as good as a recovery run, loved my trip to sark (was only a kid) so only vague memories. 4.19 is pretty quick! The winner of NDW did 6.46 had a sensible race and then went clubbing in Bristol that night.  Sounds like you had the pacing spot on and to feel good at the end with a solid finish.  It was the only thing I'm gutted I wasn't able to do.

    Another rest day today, did get up and changed to go for a run but realized left key at work so wouldn't be able to get back in the house.  I also needed to make a start on my final assignment for my uni course that's due in next week and should have started a month ago.  Its only level one so just need to pass and pretty simple stuff but has to be done.  Feeling a little fatigued which I don't believe is the alcohol today so rest prob do me some good.


  • Cal JonesCal Jones ✭✭✭
    Robert, agree about coffee. I invested in a bean to cup machine a few years back and I never buy coffee out unless I'm away somewhere and it's the only way to get some.
    My next race is Richmond 10K on 17th June, which my club is targetting and I decided to do because it's my birthday. Then I'm doing Harry Hawkes 10 mile a week after that.
  • Big_GBig_G ✭✭✭
    Jelly, the velopark is slightly less than 1 mile in length. 

    Steve, great report, and great result. Very well done!

    I've arrived in the area where the wedding is, and I've been for a trail run. Absolutely gorgeous - not trying to bore you all, but I think it's the most picturesque run I've ever done. Snow topped mountains, alpine houses, lakes, hills, bridges and hardly a soul around (apart from cows!). I did 6.5 miles (out, around a lake, and back) and think I probably had a smile on my face the whole way. 

    The area itself is in the Dolomites but they speak Italian and German here, and is very close to Austria - as such the town as two names; Siusi and Seis. It doesn't feel like Italy....although the coffee is still very good ;)

  • Cal Did consider harry hawks but I'm only back from holiday a week so will have holiday gut not really race ready!

    Big G looks stunning, I can't wait for my run round concrete jungle stevenage tomorrow.

  • Cal JonesCal Jones ✭✭✭
    Eh, I've done a few races after holidays, I wouldn't worry. It's "only" 10 miles, you'll still be ultra-fit. It's a nice race.
    I got through hot inferno pilates. It was tough as the room was really humid, but I did all the exercises (including the bloody burpees). Lots of younger, healthier people were giving up and resting but I didn't. I realised I must have developed a lot of mental toughness from running marathons because if I refuse to walk during a warm, hilly marathon when I'm 4 hours in and knackered and hurting, I'm sure as hell not going to wimp out of a set of mountain climbers or crunches that lasts 20 seconds.

    Big G - stunning!
  • Ian5Ian5 ✭✭✭
    Steve-great report,brilliant time also.
    Shades/Big G-Pity about Gloucester,I was thinking about entering but that's off the table now.
    Decent offer off them but I think they should have offered a refund rather than an entry into next year.
    Big G-Cant believe you think those views are better than Walton vale from last week  :dizzy:
    10 miles today after work,felt a little tough in the heat then remembered I ran Liverpool 5 days ago so expected really.
  • Cal JonesCal Jones ✭✭✭
    Well, I've entered next year's marathons: Vienna and Liverpool (again - I wasn't going to, but then a friend of mine signed up and talked me into yeah. Guess I'll get another Encore medal). Vienna will be my first overseas marathon. And I'll take my mate Colin, so we can go to Prater again and hopefully get to ride the rides this time.
    1SteveMac said:

    One thing I did learn is to never underestimate the distance. I think I messed with my head thinking it was only 36 miles, having gone further twice before, but it's still a long way!! Lesson learnt!
    I couldn't agree more, although with the shorter distance it does give more confidence as I think 'how hard can it be?'   Then find out it's very hard.  Same with DD, the distance is not the issue it's the severity of the course.

    Robert - I've done FVC, nice friendly event.   I started with a friend who said he knew the route and then in the first couple of miles we went wrong so trying to get back on course my friend said 'we can squeeze through this hedge'.  We did and came out the other side covered in burrs, it was like a comedy and then had 10 minutes of hysterical laughter trying to remove them all.

    So the half marathon is the route that they use for the marathon which is held once every 10 years, lots of subways, I remember that.

    Big G - beautiful photos, what a great area for a wedding.

    Ian - Glos said no refund and I suspect part of that is that they use Active.  A lot of us have had our cards replaced after using Active so it would be carnage if Active tried to refund us.

    There's the IOM marathon on 12th August, too late for GFA attempt but easy trip for you.  Ferry from Liverpool, you'd need to stay the Saturday night in Douglas, then race provide a bus to the race in Ramsey and you should be back in Douglas in plenty of time for ferry home.   It's undulating (flat for the IOM) and temperature usually a few degrees cooler than the mainland.

    Cal - great news on your 2019 marathon entries.  I've pencilled Vienna in but will have to wait a while to work out budget as I'm doing Connemara the following week.  How much was the entry to Vienna?   Once you've done an overseas marathon you'll be hooked, it's such a great way to see different places.

    RHR still a little high today but back within my normal range so finally back out for a little run today.   But I have lost so much fitness that I'm right back to the start of base training although I know I'll recover some of my fitness fairly quickly.  So I won't run Dorchester on Sunday and unlikely I'd even manage 20 miles at DD.   But it's so good to be back out training again, saw a deer on the racecourse, never seen one there before.

  • Cal JonesCal Jones ✭✭✭
    It's not cheap - currently 75 euros but then you have to buy or rent a champion chip and the T-shirt is also extra. That's fine for me as I wanted to go back to Vienna anyway, but yeah, with hotels and flights it could be an expensive trip.
    No run today. Yesterday I felt as though I'd be OK to run today but I had a rough night and feel groggy and not so great today, and experience has taught me it's not a great idea for me to run when I feel like this.
  • Ian5Ian5 ✭✭✭
    Cal-Great trip esp as you can combine it with a park though.
    Shades-I'm in N.Ireland that weekend for a wedding.GFA won't be attempted this year as I won't be ready by August so I'm just going to do some shop is getting refitted in July so I have a few days free around 8th so will try and find a race around then.
    Cal - that's not too bad price wise.  Annoying about the champion chip, that seems quite an old fashioned way to do chip timing now, I think I had to pay for a chip for Frankfurt too.    The hotels and flights don't make marathon running a cheap hobby but it does give great memories and you'll really enjoy yourself.

    Afternoon nap maybe?
    Ian - you might have to go off road as less road events in the summer.
  • Iain LoveIain Love ✭✭✭
    SHADES said:
    I have accepted the offer of a place in the Forest of Dean event, but I will probably hate it as gravel tracks :#
    Shades - FOD is a fantastic course .I did the spring one last year and am doing the the autumn one in September. It wasn't too gravely and I ran out in road shoes ..

    I've kept the running pretty light this week but been on the spin bike a few times which I enjoyed..
    Managed to get the day off work tomorrow so I can have a good lie in and fuel up throughout the day. Im aiming to run for 5hrs which should give me enough time to get home and get some sleep before the 5am wake up to get ready for Sundays race.. OH thinks I'm certifiable...
  • Big_GBig_G ✭✭✭
    I won't post any more pics, but I will say that my 8-mile trail run this morning was even more spectacular than yesterday's as the sky was clear, with no mist. There were times I literally stopped dead in my tracks as the view took my breath away!  There are 100s of routes around, and I'm sure they're all lovely, but not enough time!
  • 1SteveMac1SteveMac ✭✭✭
    Shades - yeah, it's the I did further last year, so will be fine this year thoughts I think!! Plus with ultras the courses can be completely different, with elevation and terrain etc.
    Iain - Good luck this weekend, what event are you doing?
    Cal - Nice, I've heard Vienna is a good one to do!
    Big G - Nice views!

    Sports massage last night, legs feeling much better.
  • SlowkoalaSlowkoala ✭✭✭
    Very envious of your running routes this week, Big G, looks so beautiful!

    Steve - another great ultra and great race report. Impressive, speedy finish.

    Shades - so glad you’ve finally got out for a run. I’m sure the fitness will come back quickly, I bet it just feels good too be out there again.

    I survived another track session last night - which included a relay, 2X400m and 10X500m. I’ve really missed the buzz you get afterwards. Then 9 miles today on very tired legs. I’ve got the Vitality 10,000 on Monday so I think my legs need a rest now.
    Iain - so you ran the FOD half, I don't think they've done a marathon before, have they?   So I assume we'll do 2 laps.  I'm not worried about what shoes to wear, I don't mind doing a tiny bit of training off road but not for races.  Good to hear it's not too much gravel.

    Big G - we love your photos and we're already wildly jealous ;) 

    SK - tough track session, you must have your energy levels back up there now if you did 9  miles this morning too :) 

    Good luck for Monday, do you think you're on for a PB?
  • Iain LoveIain Love ✭✭✭
    Shades - I didn't even realise there was a FOD full. Maybe one I can look at since I enjoyed the half.. 

    Steve - I'm doing a 7hr laped timed event asking the Thames tow path but because I'm running again at 7:30am Sunday I think the wide thing to do would be to only run for 5hrs..or 35miles whichever comes first.. 
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