Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Robin Hood Marathon 2014 Preparation Evaluation

Robin Hood Marathon 2014

The robin hood marathon marked my 4th ever marathon and the second in my three in three months series.

I found the last few weeks in the build up to the run tough to say they least as you might have gathered from some of my previous posts, here and here

In the few days prior to the race I didn't feel ready to run mentally or physically and kind of stopped thinking about it in the hope that it somehow wouldn't happen. 

I was annoyed with myself for being so unorganised as well. Usually the few weeks prior to a big event I am very organised and focused on my preparations and rehearse my race build up and warm ups to replicate what will happen on race weekend. But due to a few other commitments the last two weeks didn't go to plan and I wasn't able to practice as I would have liked coupled with the fact I didn't feel well enough to run long and my preparations were far from ideal.  

I was also unorganized about a few other important factors including:

Pacing - In thinking about what kind of pace I was going to try and run, should I try and push for sub 4 even though I didn't feel like i was in the right shape to do so?

Trainers - I knew i needed new trainers prior to this race but left buying them too late and although I still had around 3 weeks to wear them in I didn't feel that this was enough. 

Race hydration & nutrition and logistics - I kept deliberating and procrastinating about what to do during the race. Should I wear my hydration pack? Should I bring energy gels or rely on the lucozades on the course? If I choose to carry gels should I then bring my hydration pack to carry them in or hold them in my waist strap? Should I carry my phone with me on the run and if so should I use my arm strap or pop it in my hydration pack? 

Toilet troubles - Over the last few runs prior to the marathon I was troubled by toilet troubles and needing to stop for both number ones and number twos! Not ideal preparation to leave you in a positive mindset! This issue was weighing heavy on my mind as no runner wants to have to factor in bladder and bowel complaints into their race strategy.

So basically I think I got a bit psyched out by the mental challenges that a marathon presented and I got too caught up in things without focusing on the basics of just running. 

Hopefully that's lesson learned and I wont fall into the same trap again! 

While thinking about marathon build up I wrote an article called Final Week Marathon Preparation for takitinyourstride.co.uk, please check out not only my article but also the site as an interesting and useful running resource.

Thanks for reading, I would love to hear if anyone else has had similar experiences, full race report to follow...........