London Marathon 2011

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After twitter, facebook, work email, what else is left to say about my marathon race? I've repeated the excuses widely - I started off too fast, it was too hot, I pulled a muscle (twice - once at 8km, and again at 18km). I know I can do better than 3:54, but how much better I could have done on Sunday is debatable. While I set off too fast given the heat later on, I'm not sure it was too fast given the heat at the time. I'm very proud of my half split - I'd have been reasonably pleased with that, given my training, for a half marathon if I'd stopped at 21km.

My training wasn't enough, I know that - injury caused me too much downtime - however, it wasn't my injury that affected me at all on Sunday - my left leg was fine, my achilles giving its usual early twinges but settling quickly, as per normal. Of course I could have overcompensated onto the right leg, but I think I'd just had stiff calves all week and overused it or something - difficult to be sure.

All in all, it was a tough race, and the support at London is a double edged sword - if you're low and need a boost, you'll get one, if you're low and just want to recoup and rest a little, it's really difficult - there is almost no escape from the crowds. I'm not quite sure - I wouldn't be surprised if I was motivated by the crowd urging me on, but some of my kms where I walked weren't much slower than adjacent kms where I ran the entire length - sometimes a bit of rest is needed.

In the end, I'm glad I didn't collapse for 2 hours in the middle of the race, I survived the event, I enjoyed some of it (probably the first 10km and the last 5km), my race didn't meet strategy of enjoying it all or going it at 5:15/km, I know it's not the best time I'm personally capable of, so I will have another go at the marathon, just not quite sure when yet.

Oh, and given the failure of my Garmin 405 (it got to 41.5km - out of what I think would have been 42.7km - it registered 40.5 as I crossed the 40km timing mat) I'm totally treating myself to a Garmin 310XT that can do 20 hours.

Interestingly, even with elevation correction, Garmin Connect thinks I ran up a couple of 100m hills in Canary Wharf - not sure if it just takes a sample of skyscrapers and land and averages it out!