It’s the morning after the marathon before. My calves are sore and my hamstrings are tight, and I’m left reflecting on what was the toughest run I can remember since my first ever marathon in 2015.
I’m going to summarise it in a quick ‘Pete style’ sprint list. I don’t mess about…
I finished the race in 3:28:53, almost 4 minutes off my previous PB, so all in all, I am proud of my day, but…and there is a but…I am pretty gutted at how early my body started to die on me! Ha. The course wasn’t the easiest, as I’d been warned prior to the event by my mate Mark Millns (top quality training buddy), but everything just didn’t work as it usually does in my body on this day. I didn’t feel anywhere near as string as I had on the training up to the big day, both physically and then as the race went on, mentally. I think I am personally responsible for a lot of this. I think that my goal was a little out of my current reach and therefore I pushed harder than I should have done early on in the race, and my splits certainly back this theory up!
But there is a massive positive too take from this…
I carried on until the end! Yes, I know… It sounds simple enough to finish once you’re at a certain mile point but if I’m being completely honest, there were points in this race where my mindset became very negative and I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to get to the end. It’s amazing how quickly you can go from feeling on top of the world to wondering what the hell you are doing out there on the course. This is certainly the biggest positive I can take from my race, the fact that I didn’t give up even though I can’t remember ever feeling worse whilst running. At the time, I felt like I was weak, I could have given in and hung up my running shoes, but these are the times that really define you in running. If you can carry on when the times are tough as hell, when you are truly at your weakest, this will make you a tougher cookie to crack in the long run! Next time I am struggling like this during a race, I can refer back to Liverpool and remind myself that if I can get through that, I can overcome any running obstacle.
This is only a statement about breaking me mentally. Physically I was very broken, especially as my hamstring shot into agonising cramp about 20 metres before the finish line haha. I pray there’s some pictures out there of my face as that cramp came on. They will look hilarious haha.
Also, thanks to the medical staff who looked after me when I crossed the line. I am sure I can speak on behalf of all the runners in saying that we owe you a lot for every event that you are kind enough to attend and supply priceless care for many runners. You absolute legends!
Simple…I rest up, eat well and get my mind focused again. I’ve got Snowdon mountain race in July and a 50 mile ultra in September. 50 miles…Pete, what are you doing you tit?! That’s gonna test the mental toughness! #Beastmode!
Oh, one last thing before I shoot off…Pacers rule!!! As my pace decreased more and more over the final miles, I was passed by the 3:15 pacer and then I was about to be passed by the 3:30 one too. He was having none of it!
‘Manchester! Get running! You are getting over that line in less than 3:30!’
You sir, got me a new PB and you clawed me back from the jaws of mental destruction! haha. Thank you so much, you are an absolute legend sir!
See you lot later, ya filthy animals
Oh, and before I go, as always, Pippa has to have her place on the marathon blog! She wears a medal much better than I do 🙂