2018 is well and truly on the go with marathon 135 done and dusted in torrential rain on 1st January. This was a head-down-and-grind-it-out sort of marathon as the rain started 15 minutes after we set off and didn't abate at all. We were lucky to be running on the tarmac cycle track over at Betteshanger again and you would think that it wouldn't get puddles - wrong! Great big puddles which got bigger and bigger throughout the day and you just had to splosh through them in true trail-running style.
I wore my snazzy new technical running jacket with all sorts of fancy features. Did you click on the link and nearly faint at the price? Well I bought mine for less than a third of the price, brand new, on eBay and I thought that was a bit pricey! This jacket is what's known as 'Mandatory Kit' for many Ultra running events and offers all sorts of protective features so I needed to feel comfortable running in it long before my next fund-raising Challenge event which I'll be announcing very soon. Did it keep me warm and dry - it certainly kept the bits it covered nice and dry but my legs and feet were soaked through for the whole run! Now I'm going to investigate over-trousers............
The other thing I was trying out was my nutrition strategy (sounds serious doesn't it!). You see I always run my marathons/shortish ultras in a 'fasted' state ie I don't eat before or during the race (the only exception being the London marathon as a big breakfast is part of our routine there really early in the morning, sorry I digress). So I nibbled a little something every 6 miles to see if anything upset my tummy. I was fine.
My goal was to get below 5 hours again to get 2018 off to a good start and I was delighted to finish in 4:53:18 especially as I hadn't held off the goodies throughout Christmas!
The next 67 (I think that's right) days are going to be very focused on both nutrition and training. After a little celebratory glass or 2 of red wine at NY I am now going alcohol-free until after my event and I'm going to be tweaking my diet slightly to get myself in the best shape I can. On that note, I'm now taking part in a 30 Day Squat Challenge (ouch, they hurt!) with some chums and I'll be heading out to Bootcamp nearby when it starts up again next week together with my usual weekly yoga sessions.
In other news it's nearly time for the West Highland Way Knitalong to start and I'm really looking forward to playing around with some interesting colourwork.