Manchester Marathon report . 10 th April

After a good winter of training apart from the last few weeks where I got a Achilles niggle and Sam got a cold which stopped training for almost 3 weeks we got to Manchester .
Sadly we got stuck in the traffic and parking fiasco which meant we had to dump van on side of road at just after 7 am …  to then the join the baggage fiasco .
10 mins before race start they said to just dump bags and we had to run to the start .
Not the build up we wanted .
It also meant that we did not do what we planned pre race . Did not have time to change into our race kit as such ,  Sam had long sleeves on …
Finally got to pen area just as race started .
I settled into a good pace and felt like I was on schedule . Getting the water and gels as per schedule ( think next time make gels a bit more regular ) 18 miles came and still felt fine . 7 min 30 miles ticking by  … Few mins later the Achilles just started to feel tight and pace had to drop down … and I had to battle with body and mind to get to end . Crowds were great in helping at this time . Pace dropped to 8 min 45 miles for 23,24 and 25 th mile … managed to get back to 8 min 10 secs for last mile .
Anyway I was targetting to be under 3 hrs 20 … and I missed it by 2 mins . Damn .
Still it was a pb by almost 20 mins ….
Then I joined a little line to get my bag back … only an hour . The line behind me just kept growing . Some reporting 3 hr wait .
I rush back down to finish to welcome Sam in .
She was aiming to do 4 hrs 30 … and there she was . A very very happy lady . Did 4 hrs 29 mins .
With all she has battled over the last 4 yrs a marathon was just a dream … and she did it .
Maybe she will consider herself a runner now .
Her mile pace was 10 mins – 10 min 15 secs all the way though .  Very constant . Main problem was she was rather warm . Looked great with her medal round her neck .
The costa coffee and cake after the race was very much deserved .
Paul and Sam

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