Sunday, 18 August 2013

Cheddar Gorge Marathon

I won the Cheddar Gorge Marathon today which is one of the toughest ones in the South West of the UK. It was very hilly and off road. Here's the course profile
I also beat the course record which was set last year at the first event. Admittedly last year when the record was set the conditions were a lot wetter but I did take the record down from 4h11 to 3h29. (I'm blowing my own trumpet, but why not I train hard).

The marshals were great and the directions on route were very easy to follow with arrows on the floor and plenty of tape. If you're thinking of doing this don't make the same shoe mistake I made.  Wear trail shoes not flats! 
The race is the most scenic I've done. 
I would have liked to have gone faster at the beginning but knew it was a demanding course so kept to a steady pace. Then later on I just picked up the pace and managed to do a faster second half by about 5 mins.
A good day out.

Another thing happened today. I met a competitor before the race who's name was John. He wouldn't tell me his surname because, well I'm not really sure why but I think it was because he didn't want to show off. I asked him more questions to try and find out what he meant. After much digging and probing it turns out that he has done 800 to 900 marathons and is aiming for 1000. Now I told him that was a great achievement and he shouldn't hide it or be embarrassed. But then he started to get defensive and said he would sell me a copy of his portfolio for a pound after the race if I wanted. He seemed to be a little bit mad and concerned that I didn't believed him but I think I would be even madder if I did that many marathons too.  John if you're reading this please don't be so worried about what others think of you and celebrate your achievements. Also tell people your full name, don't get frustrated that they want proof by looking you up on the internet because it is an achievement that not many people can do. Did I believe you? Yes I think I did but I'm probably mad too.

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