My First Marathon: Stockholm Marathon 1989

I did my first marathon in 1989. I did run at school and stopped like a lot of people, then in my mid 20’s I started running again. I had been living in London for about 3 years and had always kept fit by cycling around London, oblivious to the traffic. I would be petrified to cycle around London now. After a few months of running I decided to do a half marathon. I looked in the Runners World magazine and decided to enter the Watford Half-Marathon. I sent off for the application form, filled it in and sent it back with a cheque and stamped SAE so I could receive the results. Remember this was the ‘back in day’ where online entry didn’t exist (not for me anyway). I did the half-marathon without any problems. Then of course the obvious next thing is to do was a marathon.

I entered the Stockholm Marathon via the same method as before. I must of only done about half a dozen runs until I did my longest which I think could of been as much as 15 miles!! The next day I had a sore knee which lasted about 6-7 weeks, more or less right up until the marathon. As the event came closer, I thought, I can’t chicken out now, I’ve told everyone I’m doing it, accommodation is booked and my cousin had decided to do it as well. For some reason I decided to work in London even the night before. I flew out on the first flight out of Heathrow to Stockholm. I arrive, took a taxi to the park, where my cousin was waiting for me. He had flew from Monte Carlo for the marathon. I think the marathon started at 1pm in the afternoon. I would never do something so daft nowadays, what if the plane was late?

Anyway, the Stockholm Marathon started. It was amazing Bands, Massages, Drinks, Food all as you ran and a fantastic crowd. I can remember crossing lots of bridges and it seemed to be drizzling with rain for a lot of it. By 18 miles I was knackered and my knee was sore, so there was some walking.

Finally, I got to the Stadium at the end before the 5 hour cut off point. My cousin greeted me with “I thought you were never going to get here, I’ve been waiting for ages.”We walked back to where we were staying. Our accommodation was a boat on the river. I was so, so, so tired. My cousin had to push me out to get something for dinner. We had a McDonalds. The next day we flew home. I was shattered and I thought “never again”. I was not fit and it’s not the way to run a marathon. Did I do another marathon?

Race Review Draycote Water 10km Race Series: Race 1; October, Race 2 November 2017 (This will be updated every month as results come in).

This is a great event. It is a series that runs every second Sunday of each month from October to March. It is located in Draycote Water, Warwickshire., which has a large lake and the course goes around the lake. If you live in the Midlands I recommend this series, as it’s a pretty course and it’s a longer distance from most other race series. If you are doing a spring marathon then, free parkruns, this series, 1-2 Half-Marathons and a 20 mile Race will set you up perfectly.

It was a windy but a dry day, so fairy good weather for running. Parking was really easy, and picking up numbers was easy too. We left our clothes in the car which was fine, although they had a bag drop too.

Although they advertise this course as easy, flat, I found it had some hills. It was pretty and traffic-free and encompasses a short run and back along the Farborough Dam followed by a lap of the reservoir, starting and finishing close to the country park.

All result time below are chip time. (Click links for more)

Results: Race 1 Sunday 8th of October 2017:Draycote Water 10km Series: Race 1

Men’s:

1. Paul Andrews 35.02

2. Ryan Smith 35.28

3. Lewis Cherry 37.49

Women’s:

1. Louise Andrews 44.31

2. Rachel Smith 46.12

3. Lisa Robertson 47.13

Results: Race 2 Sunday 12th November 2017: Draycote Water 10km Series Race 2.

November

Men’s

1. Paul Andrews 34.30

2. Ben Plummer 34.50

3. Paul Edwards 37.21

Women’s

1. Jess Orion 44.30

2. Louise Andrews 44.48

3. Chloe Kington 45.00

Looking for a new challenge? Ride Across America (RAAM) In a team or Solo.

For 36 years RAAM has been challenging ultracyclists from around the globe to push their physical and mental limits to the farthest reaches. Starting in Oceanside, under one of the longest piers in California, RAAM spans 3000 miles, climbs 175,000 feet, crosses 12 states and finishes at City Dock in Annapolis, Maryland, the east coast sailing mecca.

The route travels west to east, traversing three major mountain ranges (Sierra, Rocky and Appalachian), crosses four of America’s longest rivers (Colorado, Mississippi, Missouri and Ohio) and the Great Plains.  Also, passing through such iconic American landmarks as the Mojave and Sonoran Deserts, Monument Valley, Great Plains and Gettysburg.

Open to amateur and professional racers, in solo, 2-, 4- and 8-person relay teams, there is no other race in the world comparable to RAAM. The Race has become a global icon, having had over 35 countries represented. Not only has RAAM proved to be one of the most challenging races in the world, but has become a huge platform for racers to raise awareness and money for charities of their choice. in 1992 and quickly became the most popular and fastest growing segment of the race. Team sizes are 2, 4 and 8 persons.

There is no other Cycle event in the world like RAAM. There is no Race that combines the distance, terrain and weather. It challenges the team spirit from start to finish. It inspires everyone who has bee part of it. It is a test of strength, speed, endurance and camaraderie, the ideal combination of work and play.

Start Dates: Teams (no qualifying required); Saturday 16th June 2018, Solo (need to qualify) Tuesday June 12th 2017

See details on RAAM website RAAM website

Flying Fox 10: Sunday 5th November 2017

This event was first held in 2003. It’s a hilly ten–mile event usually always with a big puddle on the course. It’s part of the North Staffs Road Runners Association annual programme. It’s run on lovely, scenic but quiet lanes around the small village of Standon in rural Staffordshire. The race starts 600 metres uphill from Standon School and the race finishes at Standon School where there are biscuits, coffee and tea. This year’s winners were:

Mens:

1. Simon Myatt, Trentham R.C. 54.33

2. Carl Moulton, Boalloy Running Club 54.53

3. Scott Minshall, Trentham R.C. 57.40

Women’s:

1. Kristina Derries, Stone Masters Marathoners 1.03.35

2. Joanne Bentley, Stone Masters Marathoners 1.08.24

3. Lindsay Dixon, Newcastle Staffordshire A.C. 1.09.18

Results published on www.stonemm.co.uk

USA’s Shalane Flanagan, Kenya’s Geoffrey Kamworor, and Switzerland’s Marcel Hug and Manuela Schär Win 2017 TCS New York City Marathon. 5th November 2017.

Report by The New York Road Runners

The USA’s Shalane Flanagan ended a 40-year drought for American women in the open division at the 2017 TCS New York City Marathon on Sunday, November 5, while Kenya’s Geoffrey Kamworor took the men’s title and Marcel Hug and Manuela Schär completed a Swiss sweep in the wheelchair division.

Flanagan, an NYRR Team for Kids Ambassador who finished as the runner-up at the 2010 New York City Marathon, seized the crown from Kenya’s Mary Keitany with a time of 2:26:53.

The 36-year-old became the first U.S. female runner to win the world’s largest marathon since Miki Gorman in 1977. With her first victory in just her second appearance at the New York City Marathon, she became the sixth U.S. women’s champion in the event and recorded the second-fastest time by a U.S. woman after Kara Goucher.

“I’ve dreamed of a moment like this since I was a little girl,” Flanagan said through tears after the race. “So this means a lot to me, to my family and hopefully inspires the next generation of American women to just be patient. These are the moments that we dream of as athletes, and this is going to feel good for a really long time.”

The 16-time national champion and Olympic silver medalist was visibly emotional as she approached the finish line.

See More of this report. Click link New York City Marathon Race Report 2017

Centurion Grand Prix 5 mile Series. 5/11/2017

This is a fantastic series of six races, each covering 5 miles. They take place on the first Sunday of each month. The event doesn’t start until 11.00am, so it allows everyone time to have a “sleep in” and the ground and air to warm up since it takes place in the colder months. The Centurion Grand Prix is known for a fast course, lots of prizes, including all the raffle prizes (free to the runners) and a memento to all runners at the final race. Today, was a good day weather wise and the course was fast as always because it is flat and run on park path and trails. After we finished we walked back to have a lovely hot cup of tea and waited for the highlight of the day……how many of us are going to win something in the raffle. We watched the prize giving was first, 1st, 2nd, 3rd overall and 1st, 2nd, 3rd in the V40 Vets this week. The prizes are always money. In the raffle, the numbers kept being called out and people kept collecting wine, more wine, more wine, memento ‘s, nope no win for us today. Maybe next month.

Worksop Half Marathon: 29th October 2017

By Carl Stone (UKnetRunner)

Worksop Half Marathon is my local event with the start being only a mile from home , always well supported on fully closed roads which also runs through the scenic Clumber Park , many of the runners turn up in Halloween costumes , this years race was run in ideal running weather and I managed to knock 7 Mins off my course PB 😀 , excellent medal And T shirt also makes this a must for your race calendar .

Sunday 29th October 2017: Worksop Half Marathon

By Sam Blease.

If you go down to the woods today don’t be surprised to see about 3000 runners, many of them dressed for Halloween, tackling 13.1 beautiful but undulating miles. Worksop half marathon is a road race but it takes you through the picturesque Clumber Park. There were plenty of PB’s achieved – maybe this was due to runners being chased by ghosts & ghouls, witches and evil spirits? Even Jason’s from Friday 13th put in an appearance (photo above). You’d have to be fast to beat him to the line though, he finished the run in 1:41! A lovely morning out, chilly but dry & fairly light winds. This run is a lot of fun & worth doing just to see the fancy dress.

To see a video event tap link below.

Worksop Half Marathon

The Brooks Snowdonia Marathon Elyri: Saturday 28th October 2017

It was the 35th time this famous marathon has been run. It’s been voted the best marathon in the U.K., for more than a few times. Although I didn’t run this year, when I did it, it was the most interesting, wild, beautiful and challenging Marathon I have ever done. To most runners it’s not one for worrying about going fast or getting a P.B., it’s about a great experience.

This year Bath AC runner Daniel Jones returned to Llanberis to take the men’s title in 2.36.54 whilst Northampton athlete Hayley Munn produced a stunning performance in the women’s race in 2.57.34, taking over six minutes off the course record.

The Marathon basically has three big hills: Hill 1 – long and steep for miles to Pen y Pass which you can chug up, you can see that hill in the photo above. You then turn off onto a trail road/track and it’s a steep downhill for miles. Hill 2 – is a steady climb, on the road for miles then it’s the last hill, Hill 3 – at around mile 21. It does’nt last long but it’s so, so steep everyone around me was walking. Finally, the hill ends but it is very, very, muddy, and steep downhill which also frustratingly prevents you running in some places. You then turn of the track and come into the town into the finish line to the rapturous applause of the huge crowd on the Llanberis high street. We got a Snowdonia Marathon Slate Coaster and a Cotton T shirt at the end.

Men’s top 5

1 Daniel Jones 2:36:54 Team Bath AC

2 Matt Hobbs 2:42:34 Pudsey and Bramley AC

3 Paul Jones 2:43:45 Shrewsbury AC

4 Gareth Petts 2:45:30 Whitney RR

5 Will Russell 2:46:24 Hercules Wimbledon

Women’s top 5

1 Hayley Munn 2:57:25 Northampton RR

2 Andrea Rowlands 3:01:38 Eryri Harriers

3 Sarah Cumber 3:13:43 Halifax Harriers AC

4 Jessica Parry-Williams 3:15:51 Les Croupiers RC

5 Emma Wookey 3:15:57 Lliswerry Runners

Full results via the TDL Event Services website here 

Entries to the 2018 Snowdonia Marathon Eryri are live on the 1st of December 2017, with the 2018 race date Saturday 27th of October

Further info via the Brooks Snowdonia Marathon Eryri website www.snowdoniamarathon.co.uk, on Facebook and Twitter @marathoneryri

My husband and I are the worst parents: Running the ING Amsterdam Marathon with young children.

Nine years ago my husband and I ran the ING Amsterdam Marathon when our children were young. Here’s that story………………..

For 12 years while my children were young I didn’t run. I didn’t do that much exercise except walking the kids to school and a little bit at the gym. So when my oldest was 12 years old I said to my husband “I’d like to run another marathon”. I’d run two marathons in my mid twenties and had obviously forgotten how hard it was and that you do need to train, although the longest run for those was only 13 miles.

Anyway, I worked up to jogging to an hour on the treadmill and my husband ran with me outside. We built it up to an 11 mile run and then entered The Leek Half Marathon. I had no idea it was hilly, my god those hills. We must be the worst parents in the world because we just left the kids at the playground at the start with their Gameboys and off we went. They were 11 & 13 years old but I worried about them the whole time.

I think we did a few more 11-16 miles runs and then it was time for ING Amsterdam Marathon. We walked to exhaustion on the Saturday, not a good idea. Again, we were the worst parents ever. We left our kids in the Amsterdam Stadium with their Gameboys, sweets, biscuits, etc. They were there for over 3 hours before my husband came in. I worried about them the whole time again. We both finished in a bit of a state, my husband toe was sliced open from fairly new shoes and I obviously hadn’t done enough training. Still we got to the airport and flew out and got the kids to bed at 2am, 4 hours sleep before school. Poor kids.