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Running the Florence Marathon

Florence Marathon

Wonderful to be back for my 11th run in this Marathon. Cool/Cold sunny windless day – perfect conditions. Got round inside 4 hours – most enjoyable.

On the finish mat

Chicago Update

Small detail but it seems that I came 22nd not 25th in the World Age Grade Championships.

Chicago Marathon 2023 – World Age Grade Championships

in the chilly windy city ……

Actually OK conditions but very cold hanging around at the start. Given the near complete lack of long training runs, I shouldn’t be unhappy with a time inside 4 hours but disappointed with how it all started falling apart towards the end.

Is being 25th in the World Champs OK ? I think so and even if I had bettered my PB from >5 years ago I wouldn’t have got into the top ten.

And it was good to spend time with my ‘amigo’ Cesar : Here we are at the Expo.

As a footnote, it was good to be part of the Champs as we had a separate area with breakfast and a heated tent. But the post race baggage collection was a farce – they ended up putting all the bags out in the open for the runners to find their own bags !! Not good but it happens all too often.

Vitality London 10000

Day after the Westminster Mile, it went OK and pleased to report that the second 5k was faster than the first 5k. Negative split box ticked and 3rd in my Category.

Westminster Mile

First of several races in coming weeks : Faster than last year an da club age group best.

Belated Update

Getting lazy with this blog ……

the lats update was just prior to the London Marathon which went OK in an almost identical time to the Manchester Marathon the weekend before. Its been relatively quiote since then : Just a few of the Summer League (5m/10k) races and some of the club championship races. None of which resulted in spectacular times.

I also ran the Hackney Half which was hot and not a race that went particularly well in the heat of the day. Then also the Asics 10k which went OK.

Most recently I ran the Big Half on what was a hot day but fortunately there is quite a lot of shade to be had on this run, either from the buildings or the trees lining the route. It hadn’t been particuarly sunny the week before so not much in the way of heat radiating off the roads & buildings. The time was not great but I did manage to be first in my category, and my 5k splits were all very close to each other within 15 seconds or so.

The last part of the year is going to be very busy with 3 Marathons (Chicago, Florence & Valencia), 2 10ks and a few others as well.

Between 2 Marathons

Last weekend it was the Manchester Marathon and this week it is back to London – the last London Marathon in October seemed like only yesterday.

Manchester Marathon was an interesting test given that I’d only been able to run for one out of the previous 5 months due to a couple of injuries and cataract operations. The running that I did manage was not the sort of running you are supposed to do in preparation for running a Marathon. So I was to be able to complete it in 4h 1m which was 6th in my category although the wheels did rather come off the wagon in the last 6 km.

It took a few days to recover but am now ready for tomorrow to start the Race. I have some worries over possible race disruption from climate activists, particularly Just Stop Oil. But hopefully I can raise a few pounds for the MS Trust.

Spring Update

Its been quiet in the running department recently. Close to zero training due to Cataract operations and 2 injuries which cost about 4 months training since the beginning of November.

But I have managed to fit in the Florence Marathon at the end of November last year with a time of 3h 56m which is OK. Then the Hampton Court Half Marathon in late Feb with a time of 1h 53m. Neither time was special but not bad given the lack of training.

So on to a busy April with a half marathon & 2 full marathons, including London which I am running to raise funds for the MS Trust as in previous years. Click on the logo to go to my fund raising page please !

Iten Kenya – Recap from August 2022

This is presentation of what I experienced when I spent 2 weeks in a training camp held at the High Altitude Training Centre in Iten Kenya :

Iten 2400m high atop the Rift Valley in Kenya is one of the homes of Kenyan long distance running. In this you see –

  • The ‘pacers’, local runners who accompanied us so we didn’t get lost & a view of the camp grounds
  • The food provided – all local with no dairy (butter or cheese)
  • Early morning training run : In Kenya runners train in large groups typically with an early morning 6.30 am run and a late afternoon run.
  • The famous Thursday Fartlek at Tiren Road where groups would all joinh together to run Fartlek from 6km to 10km or more over rolling the red earth roads
  • Tuesday TRack session in Eldoret, the County Town. This track is a typical kenyan government project which is not finished due to th efailure of governemnt to provide all the promised funds. Its so heavily used the track is now worn out. But it is very busy : There were 200 runners there including Eliud Kipchoge who you can see in action and then later taking time for selfies & au
  • Track Drills by Collins Kibet, a successful US Collegiate 800m runner & brother of Sylvia Kibet, winner of several Olympic medals.
  • Tour of St Patricks High School which produced many champions under the guidance of Brother Colm. The athletics training camp is no longer an integral part of the school, with the school now having 4 times the number of pupils than before. Brother Colm has retired from his role at the school but still lives in the grounds.
  • Ian Kiprono who now leads the Athletics ‘school’ attached to ST Patricks answers the question ‘that 3 pieces of advice would you give to runner’. Eat, Sleep, Run……
  • Meet Sylvia Kibet, Olympic medallist…
  • Everyday Pictures : Kenya kids were always happy smiling and greeting us with ‘ Hi – how are you’. Sheep and cattle grazed everywhere on tracks, grass verges at the side of roads.
  • Last night there we all had dinner together with our pacers and special guest Brother Colm.