Thank you again for visiting my blog.
As you guys are already aware from my previous blog posts that I plan to run Brighton marathon that is scheduled to take place 3 weeks today on April 9th 2017. I'm very excited.
Training has gone really well so far. I've currently done a half marathon, 16 miles, 17 miles, 18 miles, 19 miles, 20 miles and 21 miles with a last 20 miles run scheduled for later on today before I start to taper.
The 21 miles run that I did last Sunday was one of the longest and hardest training runs that I have done yet. I had originally planned to go on the Saturday but when I woke up my body felt like it wouldn't have been able to cope which is possibly because of the late night that I had before. I woke up on Sunday with a lot more confidence and self belief that I was going to achieve 21 miles today.
I set off at approximately 10:15am and started at a slow gentle pace which I decided to maintain all the way round. I figured that if I started off quickly then I may not have any energy towards the end.
I carried on down towards Avenham Park and it was a lovely morning. The weather was ok but lots of families were out. Once I got into Avenham Park I decided to take a bit of a detour from the normal Parkrun route and explore different parts of the park that I had never seen before.
As I love nature I decided to take a detour via the beautiful water fountain. It's pretty amazing and I guess it can somehow give a calming influence whilst running. As I continued I decided to explore more of the side streets/cul de sacs by the side of the park to see if I could find areas that I previously didn't know existed. I was totally shocked when I saw a childrens play area which I had no idea was there and I must have been near that area loads of times before. I couldn't believe that I didn't know it was there!
As we exit the park there is a long straight path which goes on for about 2 miles. I find this path quite beautiful as it is full of nature. I got to the end of the path and was beginning to run towards the Red Rose HQ aka The Poachers Pub when I saw a fellow Red Roser. I didn't know this at the time but as I approached them, they appeared to be struggling with cramp. I found out they were running in the same direction as I was planning to run so ended up doing about 4 miles with them along a nice flat route followed by country roads leading upto Cureden Valley and Farington. After a few miles I headed back on my own and somehow mentally it does seems a lot harder when you are running on your own compared to running with other people. I guess the company helps to take your mind off things.
As I headed back on my own I knew I had a long way to go as I was still only around the half way point into my training run but I was determined. After going down the long road towards Poachers I had a quick drink at Sainsburys before hitting the road again. The run back from The Poachers is around 4 miles but I decided that I again wanted to take another detour. Ended up running in a few more cul de sacs to see more of Preston.
On one of the cul de sacs I noticed a school but only knew it was there as I had saw it on a previous training run a few weeks earlier. I also found a detour into Avenham Park because some people don't like using public roads but have to run near some fields. Ended up seeing my mate Toshif who I hadn't seen in a few months and he told he that he was interested in joining Red Rose so I guess he must have caught the running bug too.
I had to politely tell him that I had to carry on because lots of people may know that I can be a chatterbox when I want to be and before you know it we end up talking for like half an hour. Now i'm in the final few miles of the run. By now I had done 17.5 miles and didn't have long left at all. Now it's all about being strong and resilliant to see the job through. I decided to run back near Avenham Park in the same direction to add more mileage. I love the views sometimes and the complete greenery that surrounded me. It's an amazing thing about the outdoors and running.
I was feeling tired now and after 1 last drink stop I reached the bottom of London Road hill and tried to run 3/4 of a mile towards the park and 3/4 of a mile back as I only had a mile and a half left. the last 3/4 of a mile felt like the fastest of the whole 21 miles but I guess adrenaline kicked in by then.
I was really happy to finish. Longest planned training done and dusted. Next race was the Trimpell 20 which I may write about in my next post.
Thanks for reading.