Marathon #2, 3 weeks after #1, and a welcome return to running on tarmac after the mud of Essex in January.
Another welcome change was being joined on this trip by some club mates, Steve, Mick and Sarah. Two joined me for the trip down, and one lives locally. That makes it much easier and more fun.
The Martello Marathon is named after the Martello towers that decorate the Kent coast, and a couple of them are usually in view on this run. The run all takes place on the seafront, between Folkestone and Hythe. 3 out and back laps, of 8.74 miles each. Dead flat, and the only obstacles are local dog walkers, out enjoying the weather. It was a beautiful day, a little bit warm for February, up to 15 degrees I think, and not a cloud in the sky.
My plan for the run, was to run the first 2 laps at a decent pace, and give myself a shot at running a 4 hour time, something I’ve only done once before.
As happened in marathon #1, I was lucky enough again to get chatting with someone who turned out to be a very useful running partner, thank you Paul! We got chatting after about a mile, and ended up finishing the marathon together. He was an experienced campaigner with over 200 marathons under his belt, and we took turns dragging each other along as the miles ticked by.
After 2 laps, that was 17.5 miles in, I was behind the pace I’d hoped to set, but found that I was still feeling OK, and was still managing to put in 9 minute miles. They became 9:15s, 9:30s, and then the last 2 or 3 miles really did get quite tough. Eventually the finish line came into sight, and crossed it to clock a time of 3:58:56. Delighted to get under 4 hours again.
Job done for February. Next up a track marathon on 1st March, that will be an experience!