THANK YOU, and goodbye?

So, this is probably the last post for a while, thanks for all who have read and supported me and thanks to everyone who has donated. The final amount raised was £1600 and the final time to cross the line was 2 hours 13 minutes and 23 seconds! Here are just a couple of images from the day…

Just over halfway round!

Just over halfway round!

Me trying my best to speed up for the finish line!

Me trying my best to speed up for the finish line!

Trying my best not to collapse on the finish line!

Trying my best not to collapse on the finish line!

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Robin Hood Half-Marathon, done…

So, yesterday was the big day. Over 11,000 people descended upon the Victoria Embankment in Nottingham for the Robin Hood Full, Half and Mini marathons. The half-marathon was my first organised race, so I didn’t really know what to expect. The organisation was great, everyone grouped by predicted time, pace runners with flags, plenty of water and Lucozade points throughout the course – roads closed and stewards on hand.

My first thought, as a normally solo runner, was – aren’t all these people just going to get in the way? But I was wrong, the other runners offered a way to pace myself steadily (at the start anyway), normally I start off much faster than my regular long-distance pace and settle in later on I was able to start at that pace from the get go.

By the half way point, my average kilometre time was 5:44 – perfectly acceptable for my target of around the 2 hour mark but unfortunately by 12km that had dropped to well over 5:50 – the heat of the day started to affect me and for the last two or three km I was pretty slow. Fortunately I made it, my final time (from the chip) was 2:13:23 which for a 15 stone lump is not too bad! It wasn’t on or under the 2 hours, it wasn’t even a PB for the distance, but I was really happy to finish and had a great time!

Sponsorship and support has been incredible, my target was £1000 to split between the two groups and the total currently stands at £1475 and rising! So grateful for all the kind donations, messages and tips that have been shared with me.

So what next you may ask, is this the end of ‘Run fat boy, run!’?? The answer is, not sure! Going to take a week off and then start to try to improve my shorter distance times, would love to be able to break that elusive 25 minute 5km and then maybe extend that to a 50 minute 10km! I am not saying never again to long-distance, just not now!

Thanks for reading…

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Training, Week 22, Run 2 (Last minute nerves…)

In our house, you can tell when winter is on the way because our little boy gets the coughs; for any parent of a child with a tracheostomy, they will know that time of year when the number of suctions rises dramatically. Unfortunately this is not only a daytime phenomenon, even at night suctions are required and for my wife and I this means that the amount of sleep we get reduces significantly. We take it in turns to sleep on the floor next to his bed so that every other night we get a reasonable amount of sleep. What has this to do with running? I hear you ask, well the night before my final long run before the race it was my turn on the floor; as it happens, 3.5 hours sleep is not quite enough for me to be able to run 21km!

On Sunday morning after church, I donned my running gear, grabbed some water and set out. I managed the first 10.5km in 1h5m but noticed that it was getting really hot. It continued to get hotter as it approached midday and by the 16km mark I was really flagging. At 17km I just lost power, all my energy drained and at 18km I had to call it a day; it was around the 2hr mark. I walked the remaining 3km home for a total time of around 2h25m. I think the lack of sleep was the biggest factor in not being able to complete this run, but I have also dramatically reduced my food intake this last week to try to shed a few pounds for race day – maybe the combination was just too much.

Fortunately we have worked our sleep rota out so that the day before the race it is my night to sleep! I will also be investigating the technique of carb-loading as it sounds like a good excuse to eat lost of pasta!

Week 22, Run 2 – 21km, actual run 18km 02:00:46

I am not too worried about race day, even if it does take 2h25m to complete! Sponsorship is now at 114% of the target, thanks so much for reading – the end is in sight!

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Training, Week 22, Run 1(Almost! So annoyingly close…)

Given that there is only just over a week until the half-marathon, I thought I would increase the frequency of my posts again to try to get as many people as possible to read the blog and possibly donate. I have only managed one run this week so far, but it was a pretty good one!

If you read my last post, you will have seen that I picked up a little twinge in my ankle, so it was with some trepidation that I headed out for a 5km run. My ankle felt fine, but I was a bit nervous that I might aggravate it again. That said, I set of reasonably quickly and ran the first km in 4:26 one of my fastest km ever! The second km was 4:56 (total 9:22) pretty fast for me; so when km 3 was 5:21 (total 14:43) I knew I was on track for my 25 minute 5km target. I have been wanting to run the 5k in 25 or less for ages, but it always seems to elude me. The fourth km was a disaster and mainly due to traffic, it was rush hour and I just couldn’t cross one of the roads, I lost my momentum (plus about 10 to 15 seconds) and my time was 5:32 (total 20:15). I managed to pick up the pace for the final km, but not enough, my fifth and final km was 5:09 and the recorded total for the run was 25:25. Not only frustratingly short of my own PB of 25:13, but also annoyingly close to the 25 minute goal.

Week 22, Run 1: 5km – Actual Run 5km – 25:25

Tomorrow is another 13.1, in fact the last before the big race! Thanks for reading, thanks for sponsoring, now at 110% of my target which is awesome!

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Now you’re probably thinking, why hurrah, the race is still 8 days away surely? This is a sponsorship hurrah, the £1000 target has been met and passed! The current figure is £1068.10, but there is still over a week to go. A big thank you to everyone who has donated so far. I will probably keep the donation facility available for a couple of weeks after the race, so there is still time if you would like to contribute to a couple of really great causes!

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Training, Week 22 (Injury avoidance)

This week I managed three runs but with varied results! My first run was going to be a 5km PB attempt, I have long been wanting to run 5km in under 25 minutes and was feeling confident, unfortunately I got a stitch at about 3.8km and had to call it a day at 4km – my shortest run for a long time! My second run was again a 5km, this time I managed and it was only about 50 seconds slower than my best time (which was a fair while and a few less pounds ago).  My third run was to be the full 13.1 half-marathon, but at around 6km I slightly twisted my ankle on some uneven pavement; I carried on until 10km, but I could feel that it wouldn’t do me any good to carry on further. I do not want to pick up an injury 12 days before the race! I went home earlier than intended with the intention of trying again in a few days – hopefully my ankle will be 100% again by then…

Run 1 – 5km PB attempt – actual run 4km (20:48) splits – 4:37, 5:05, 5:37, 5:28 (5:12 average)

Run 2 – 5km – actual run 5km (26:08) splits – 4:46, 5:03, 5:15, 5:24, 5:37 (5:13 average)

Run 3 – 21km – actual run 10km (59:09) splits – 5:23, 5:32, 6:01, 6:24, 5:44, 5:26, 6:20, 6:17, 6:05, 5:52 (5:55 average)

Great news on the sponsorship front, reached £983.10 of the £1000.00 I am hoping to raise, hopefully I can get the remaining £16.90 over the next 12 days! Thanks for reading, thanks for supporting, God bless…

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Training, Week 21 (and then there was one…)

This (last) week was exceptionally busy. I had to give a deposition in a court case (don’t worry, I haven’t been a bad boy) which, with preparation, took the best part of two days, in addition my little boy started school, which for any child is a major milestone, but if you are aware of our little boys issues it is even bigger! Thanks to the hard work of my wife and the commitment of our little boys school, everything was in place for him to start, full-time, with the rest of his peers!

With all of that, there was only time for one run, I decided I would do the full 13.1 miles and got up early one morning to fit it in…

Run 1 – 21km (13.1 miles) – 2h15m28s

I had set my alarm for 4:55am (yeah, I know, hideous) but when the time came, it took me about 40 minutes to fully wake up and get myself out of bed. I thought it was about time for a new route so after about 3km I deviated from my usual route. The new route took me over a couple of pretty steep hills and by 10km my pace was really slow. At this stage of my training I am not sure what I can do to pick up my pace, it seems to have deserted me for the longer runs. That said I still managed the full distance which I am really pleased with; I have now run the full distance (or more) six times and illness and injury aside I am pretty confident I will be able to manage in three weeks time. Everyone I have spoken to says that the atmosphere, other runners and spectators mean that I will run faster on the day, but a good friend warned me about starting off too fast and struggling for the rest of the distance.

Sponsorship has jumped again and I am now just £161.90 short of my £1000 target! Thanks so much for reading and for your continued support…

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