Sunday, 20 October 2013

Final week

The final week has come around very quickly and in the lead up to a marathon you start to get itchy feet. So much of your previous months have been filled with waking early to get the extra miles in, checking over previous plans for a comparison with a recent session and generally building up to the day. Yes that day. The upcoming 2 and whatever hours it may be.

I know that right up to the last fleeting moments, before the starter will cast their gun-shot into the endorphin filled air, I’ll still be slightly edgy. However, after the gun sounds it’ll be all on. The time for worry and concern has past. There’s no need to waste what is potential energy on such thoughts. We need to relax, stay focused on what is in front of us and stay in the moment.

Although I’ve run a few marathons I still feel that each one is a big learning curve and experience. One of the most important experiences I’ve taken from running a few is that the race is long. There are going to be highs and lows. Reducing the low parts as much as possible is very achievable in a marathon, and something we strive to do each time. I enjoy the concept of staying in the moment, and continually updating/checking myself by using series of little reminders and prompts. Form, core, head and shoulders and the main regions I target, while chanting a mantra ‘light and strong’. Recently I’ve read about other athletes who continually do this, with their own variations of course. Consequently I find this interesting so here are some –

This is what you came for
Scott Jurek, ultra runner.

Thing strong, be strong, finish strong
Renee Metivier Baillie, indoor athletics runner.

Mind over mileage
Kara Goucher, elite marathon runner.

Concrete, meet courage
Paula Radcliffe

Last Sunday was my final hit out before Frankfurt. It was a ten mile race in a quaint little town called Tiptree. Tiptree is famous for its Jam Factory. The race was run around quiet country lanes, with minimal traffic. Conditions proved to be ok, despite lashings of overnight and early morning rain, it did manage to subside before the start.

I wanted to take confidence out of this race and feel strong at the end of it. Both of these boxes I ticked off. I even went through 10km in a PB time. I ended up winning the race in a time of 52.39. A slightly slower final 5 km’s but I feel I was thinking about Frankfurt in the back of my mind.

Speaking of which, I can’t wait to get another taste of a big city marathon. I believe that this will be another step up from Seoul, although they are both Gold label races, Frankfurt seems to have plenty of pre and post marathon hype! I’ll be busy taking plenty of snaps and getting them online!

Rest this week, that’ll be the key for me! Plenty of it and plenty of good food!

I’ll touch back post Frankfurt! 

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