12-May-2017 03:36 PM
|Stirling Marathon 2017. The Big Day Tip 25 13.1 to 26.2 miles
Take your first half split. Hopefully you have managed that first half well and still have plenty in reserve. The hills are behind us and the City centre excitement is ahead. Check all is well. Ease off for a few minutes if you feel anxious. Up the effort gradually a mile or two into the second half if you feel confident.
Assuming I can resist turning off for home for a cuppa as we pass Dunster Road in Causewayhead, another huge supporters energy boost awaits as we pass Corrieri’s (the spiritual home of the AP Recovery Ride…9:30a.m. Mondays. All welcome) and along the first part of Alloa Road. Beyond this, expect another quieter, even tedious spell as we get further down the road and hit the ring-road section up to the Morrison’s roundabout at around 16 miles. I like this point….10 miles to go and from now on we count down in single figures!
Thereafter we are heading towards the crowded and buzzing lapped section of the course and the business end of the race. I deliberately haven’t checked this out. I need some novelty in the later stages. This is when the marathon begins to bite and you are mighty glad you did those longer runs. You’ve been here before. So keep doing what you have been doing in practice and tap out the rhythm. The miles will tick by especially if the crowds turn out. Keep up the nutrient flow: I will take my last feed deep into the final mile.
Everybody mentally fist-pumps at the 20 mile point. Still a long way to go. But we are at the beginning of the final stretch - 6 x 1 mile to go. …..21……..22. At some point between 22 and 25 you will experience an epiphany i.e. you will suddenly realise, however tired you are, however bad you feel, that you are going to finish! And you will begin to glow on the inside....I promise.
Mile 25 -26.2…..I will leave you in peace now to figure this out. You will find a way!
As you cross the line, remember to stop your watch. Get that skimmed milk and Ovaltine or your equivalent recovery drink down you as soon as you can - it really will help you short-term — and finally try to recover standing up if you can …. sitting down may trigger cramps even if you have avoided them in the race. It took me about 15 comical minutes and many attempts just to get into my van cramp-free after the Loch Katrine marathon! I am planning to walk the 2 miles home from the finish (at about 60 minute miling pace).
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