So what’s next?

My main goal for this year was to successfully complete marathon training and run strong at the Liverpool marathon. Against my wildest dreams I managed both of these things without issue (apart from a minor shin blip that I probably blew way out of proportion in my maranoia).

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So what now? Well, I didn’t really know how I’d feel after the marathon, whether I’d be injured, ruined, exhausted or raring to go again so I didn’t plan anything in concrete. As it turns out my good training meant I was in pretty good shape afterwards (can I get a HALLELUIGH!) so really the door was open to whatever I fancied, in reason obviously.

Even though my DNAFit results told me my body’s apparently good (relatively speaking) with both short and longer distances I know which I prefer and which feels better. I adore marathons. There’s just something so special about them. And so far they’ve been enjoyable rather than painful. There’s no OMG I CAN’T BREATHE OH THE LACTIC ACID BURNS pain of the shorter distances. Marathons are hard in other ways though: mentally fatiguing as well as physically tiring with the dull aches of continuously running over so many hours.

When I finish a marathon I instantly want to do another one. When I finish a fast 5k I want to be sick and never run again. I constantly think “why am I doing this?”, whereas during a marathon I’m thinking “I can’t believe I’m doing something this amazing”.

There are some pretty incredible runners in my running club and in the blogging world that are striving to hit certain shorter distance goals. My friend Karen, my blogging friend Autumn and my fellow Brighton half marathon buddy Cathy (over a year ago now??) are all striving for (and likely to hit) the elusive and indeed very impressive sub-40 10k goal. That’s eye wateringly fast. That’s insane. But it’s not for me. Don’t get me wrong I’d love that PB on my roster but I just don’t have the drive to put the effort in to get it. Because it would require a lot of effort for me…speed drills, intervals, bleurrghh! And to be honest, I’m not sure I’d ever achieve it.

So again, what’s next for me? Well another marathon obviously. I’ve signed up to Bournemouth marathon and I’m very excited.

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Loads of my club are doing it, it’s within driving distance so I can actually sleep in my own bed the night before, my parents can easily watch and I can join my cub for loads of the Sunday long runs leading up to it. At the moment I don’t really have a goal time-wise as I’m so pleased with Liverpool…but a little part of me wonders because it’s flatter what I could do. But that’s food for thought right now.

There’s also another marathon I’m considering. Now I know it sounds greedy, maybe stupid and reckless given my past issues…but hear me out. It’s the Cheddar Gorge marathon. Yes OK that sounds even more mental. It’s hilly and completely off-road.

I’ve done the half marathon and absolutely hands-down loved it. It felt like an adventure the entire time and I’ve been meaning to get back there to relive the experience. Only this time I want to do the two laps – the marathon distance.

If I did do this then it’ll be without a care in the world for pace or time. I’m well aware it will take over four hours to do (my half time was almost two hours, so I’m pretty sure I’m looking at around 4.5 hours if I have a good day!). I’ll walk the hills, stroll through the aid stations and stop to chat…I won’t be thundering along pushing the pace. I’ll be stopping to smell the flowers 😉

Anyway it’s just over six weeks away…I have the Stansted Slog Half Marathon (which I did last year) this weekend which will be a good indicator as that’s a very hilly off-road half. Another good test will be the the Ultra12 event I have coming up the weekend after. This is a 12 hour event where I’ll be part of a five person team running 5 miles laps all night on an off-road course…a bit like Endure, but in half the time. I hope to do three laps so that’ll be a nice lot of mileage to play with.

Then I’ll just take each week as it comes. If things get too hard, too tiring, or niggles start appearing I’m going to drop to the half distance and focus on Bournemouth, which is ultimately more important to me.

So that’s me! Who knows if I’ll do the Cheddar Gorge marathon or not. I won’t be too sad, but I would like to do it as a change from the road marathons…but we’ll see.

What are your current running/fitness goals at the moment?

Have you done multiple marathons in a year? Or back-to-back?

Am I risking it by doing another marathon so soon?

11 thoughts on “So what’s next?

  1. YES to the Cheddar Gorge marathon! It’s clearly you something you want to do and I really don’t think it will take too much out of you (as long as you’re sensible about the hills and stuff, which it sounds like you are). Sometimes ‘lolloping’ about off-road at a sensible pace is just so good for you (both body and mind). I say go for it!
    Autumn recently posted…A Confidence Boosting WeekendMy Profile

  2. Yay someone else who hates intervals! It’s funny because with CrossFit I obviously love the short sharp high intensity stuff but with running I’ll take a long run (for me…) any day. Maybe something to do with the atmosphere I’m in and running being my thinking space?
    These both sound super exciting. Do you get free cheese at the end of the Cheddar one? 😉
    Pip {Cherries & Chisme} recently posted…WIAW – The Birthday EditionMy Profile

  3. It is funny when you say that, because to me a 10K is not too stressful- I don’t have to worry about what I eat the night before, or contemplate being out there for hours, whereas although I prefer a half marathon, the nerves are higher and by about mile 9 or 10 I am often wondering why I am not just doing a 10k. But then I don’t run them fast enough probably! If I push myself in a parkrun I get that sick feeling and I hate that, so I can’t imagine doing that for over double the time!
    I am doing the Bournemouth 10K- it’s the Saturday evening, so hopefully I will be out to cheer on some of the marathoners before driving home- I shall be looking out for you! How exciting!
    I think so long as you continue to be sensible with your training then another marathon is OK- especially one without the time pressure. People do them fairly frequently and your body must get used to it after a while.
    Maria @ runningcupcake recently posted…Being a fitness firstMy Profile

  4. You’ve mentioned this race a couple of times now…I think you should do it! 😀
    As I said when we met, I ran the South Devon coastal trail marathon halfway through my MK Marathon training this year. I know everybody is different, and I would hate for you to get injured but I think there is a real difference between road and trail running. I had a really good run at South Devon and then PBd at Milton Keynes two months later. Trail running makes your legs stronger and gets you used to a longer time on your feet. Because trail races are usually run more casually and on softer surfaces there is much less pressure on the body. I see at as getting all the benefits without as may of the risks!
    P.S. I’m looking forward to the day you want to up it to ultras! 😛
    Mary recently posted…What I plan to eat during a 70m raceMy Profile

    • I remember you saying that and that was one of the things that has really encouraged me to do it. You’re so right about trail making you strong and it being different. I definitely felt that in the half marathon this past weekend. It didn’t feel like a long slog, it felt varied and exciting and the miles FLEW by.
      Ultras will happen…(hopefully)…one day…
      AnnaTheApple recently posted…Too much of a good thingMy Profile

  5. Cheddar Gorge marathon sounds amazing! I think it’s possible to do more than 1-2 marathons a year, but not if you run them all full pelt as it takes too much out of your body. I’ve done multiple in the last few years, but only 1 of them I was really pushing it, the rest were training runs for ultras or I was taking it easy due to injury.
    Lauren (@PoweredbyPB) recently posted…16 things I learned during 100kmMy Profile

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