I had entered this stupid marathon with little preparation, the decent thing would have been to advise me not to take part or at least to think about the half marathon or 10k options - but no - you let me walk head on into this run of doom.
In reality I had a tough marathon but no tougher than anyone else's, marathon's they are hard aren't they?
The race left Riverton in New Zealand's deep South bound for Invercargill. The course was undulating but pretty forgiving really. It was similar to Ashby or the Stamford 30K but without any serious hills just the occasional undulation. It was boringly straight along a rural highway for 30K, a completely straight road, no turns or bends, then we turned at a roundabout to head into the city. By half way I was stiff, at 30K I'd had enough but then the roundabout came and I changed course for home. It lifted my spirits no end (it's all in the head isn't it?). I was able to canter the last 12K. The "K" markers also did my head in, I can't cope with "K"'s, I'm a miles runner. I also suffered "K to go" signs instead of the amount of "K"'s run. I was unsuccessfully trying to convert kilometres to miles and trying to subtract what I had left from I'd done (something like that). By 30K I needed food and in a "jaffa cakes" like episode I asked Tracy if other runners been receiving support - they had so I tucked in big time, the banana, raisins and cake that were offered went down a treat.
It was a pretty simple race, only water or powerade at aid stations which were about every 5K.
I finished, relieved in 3:27ish. Official results should appear here www.southlandfestivalofrunning.co.nz by noon tomorrow. (NZ time).
The lesson on the day is found in the photo attached. I'm now enjoying a pint of Speights in the local salon like bar. It really is like the wild west down here. We leave for Dunedin this afternoon if we get out alive.