• Barry Gerhold

Saxon Shore - The Usual Suspects Challenge

Marathon #13 of the year complete.

18th December 2016

This event being another challenge event - run as many 3.86 mile laps as you can (or want) within 6 hours.

My intention was to set a new 50k Personal Best (31.1 miles) to beat 4hrs 30min. The plan to run at an average of 8min 30sec per mile for 8 laps (30.8 miles) which leaves me with 200m – so i’d run the first 200m of lap 9 and most likely stumble through the remainder.

The plan seemed to work, I set into a relatively comfortable pace, I was itching to run faster due to the amount of runners up ahead but I stuck with it.

There is a tough hilly section towards the end of each lap which certainly tests the legs and accelerates the fatigue. For the first few laps it is bearable, not really losing too much time or speed. After lap 5 however this is a different story, pain is all you feel.

I started to notice that I was gaining on some of the runners up ahead. Some of which had completed other marathons recently, some the week before, some the day before. Hats off to them all.

On lap 7 (marathon distance lap) as I approached the hilly section I decided to walk the steep section as fatigue was certainly effecting my hamstrings, this was the only mile that I dropped below my intended pacing.

Natalie met me at the end of the lap to see if I would continue. The clock was somewhere in the region of 3:40-3:45. (ahead of target time) Still some chance of a 50k PB so I continued.

This lap was very tough though. Barely anything left in the legs at all. Many sections of this lap I had to walk and when I got back into base camp at end of lap 8 at 4hrs 28mins. I had about 2mins to do the 200m that I needed to set a new PB, but this meant having to do another 3.86 mile lap. At this point I really could not be arsed and gave up the opportunity.

I was happy that the pacing was pretty much on track for the first 26 miles and will aim on targeting my personal best on a flatter course I think.

https://www.strava.com/activities/805660072 https://www.strava.com/activities/805594070

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