Kielder Marathon - 04/010/15

IMG 8064 - Copyian Hague

Photo Courtesy Andrew McCann                 Photo Courtesy Paulo's Running Pics

Report by Ian Hague

On 4th October Lisa Bennett and I took part in the Kielder Marathon. I had some longer duration triathlon training under my belt by the time I started following a training program from a book by Don Fink - ‘Mastering the Marathon, Time Efficient Training Secrets for the 40-plus Athlete’ and Lisa followed a plan from Rob. Both plans were very similar in many ways, with many training sessions based on heart rate zones and time spent in ‘that zone’. This enabled us to share some of the longer run sessions which helped pass the time more quickly.


The day of the race was ideal with cool dry conditions and little breeze. The event was pretty well organized except that the transfer busses from the remote car parking had difficulty turning at the drop off point near the start, and as a consequence, the start was delayed by some 20 or so minutes, leaving the more punctual participants standing around getting cold.


The field consisted of 6-700 athletes. The route was undulating on a mixture of tarmac and smooth trails and the training we had done on the Guisborough Hills put us in good stead. We ran separately. I used my heart rate monitor to pace myself and found the technique very effective, finding myself gradually picking off those who had gone out too fast. This was very satisfying! I felt strong and confident of a good time. Despite having been plagued with left hip and hamstring problems in the few months leading up the race, my leg felt as good as it had been.


I had, however, prepared myself mentally for the risk of failure and felt hints of problems developing from around 20 miles. Low and behold at just after mile 24 my chronic hip/glute problem acutely manifested itself with excruciating pain on the outside of my left knee (IT band pain?) and I had to sit down to absorb it or fall over. After a time I managed to start hobbling the remaining distance, periodically crying out as the pain welled up. Several runners who I had overtaken began to trickle past. After a sit and a stretch I managed to walk with a least a little fluidity and Lisa who was running strongly caught me up and slowed down to enquire if I was ok. I urged her to keep on going, she was in line to finish second woman. Desperate to get a time of under 3hrs 30 minutes, I managed to run the last few hundred meters to cross the line in a time of 3:26:56. Not bad for a 1st attempt on an undulating route with injury thrown in. I can’t really grumble.


So is it worth getting your Snickers in a twist over a Marathon (sorry!) where you feel you might not have reached your potential? No is the answer, for me it was a mental as well as a physical test and I had prepared myself for both. It is about more than the 1st few steps, it is about the ‘longer run’, not just this marathon but hopefully the challenges of the ones to come. I plan to revisit Kielder next year!


Lisa finished as 2nd woman with a cracking time of 3:26:29, not bad considering she was only hoping to get just under 4 hours. Reflecting on a catch phrase from the Hong Kong Phooey cartoons of my youth, “I was proud to be ‘run over’ by the very humble, very well respected and excellent athlete that Lisa Bennett is! Well done Lisa, you are having a great season, and well deserved!



Chester Marathon 2015 - My Secret Marathon



Report by Diane Hall


Back in March I ran the Locke Park 20 miler and finished comfortably after the disaster the year before. Running for 20+ years I have always thought about running a marathon but it just didn't happen, the 20 miler now made me think it was more achievable. The next thing I knew in April Graham put my entry in for Chester Marathon, it was far enough away and also had been entered by a fair few people we knew that hopefully no one would notice my entry, Dave Aspin being the only one who would dig enough. Michelle knew but was sworn to secrecy, Beth couldn't keep a secret so she was definitely kept out of the loop, Cheryl Hepples was training for York so we did our long runs together. Keeping it from Terry Saffin was hard, I thought she might cotton on when I said I was running 18 miles with Cheryl but she didn't, must have been having one of her "blond moments". Anyway it looked like my secret was safe. At least if something happened and I had to pull out nobody would know.


The morning of the marathon couldn't have been better, overcast with hardly any wind. I lined up with everyone else behind the 5hr start, the start was on the Roodee (race course), the grass was wet so we had all been offered plastic over shoes to keep our feet dry before the start, great idea. I got talking to a few ladies who were also doing their first marathon so we set off together, gossiping as we went, trying to run slow enough to hopefully keep going to the end. Near to 10 miles there was only 3 of us together, Patsy from Norwich and Ray, a guy we caught and ran with. Patsy decided to walk a bit at 14 miles and told us both to carry on, I ended up running on my own after about 15miles, when I checked the results later Ray DNF. I did find it quite difficult to keep my pace slow, Grahams saying going around in my head "you can't put the toothpaste back in the tube". The aim was to finish, even if I had to crawl, I wasn't giving up now. The course was supposed to be flat, if you're a plodder it’s not, those slight drags are.........a bit of a nuisance.


Graham had brought his bike to catch me on different parts of the course, taking wonderful photos of me along the way, everyone who knows me knows I hate having them taken, I was too tired in places to object, he also gave me great encouragement till I finally at 23 miles told him nicely I would see him at the finish.

There were a couple of steep downhills for me, my quads were screaming, there were also a couple of nasty hills, I didn't even attempt to run them. They say a marathon is made up of 2 races 20 and 6, my goodness that 6 was blooming hard. My watch died on mile 22 so I was running blind. I was struggling for the last couple of miles so ran and walked using lampposts, bins and cones as run/ walk guides. I got to the last 500m to go and my legs were crying for me to stop so I ran and walked to 400m, then I kept repeating to myself "a lap of the track, a lap of the track", finishing on the Roodee the last 200m was the longest 200m I have ever ran, my leg kept knotting and cramping, just run, just keep going I was saying, I didn't hear or see Graham, the crowds were amazing just willing you on to the finish, the clock was showing 5.03 I wasn't sure about my time but was really pleased to finish so close to 5hrs. I picked up my medal and goody bag and almost cried, I'd done it, I had nothing to prove to myself anymore. Chester Marathon is one I would recommend, the setup, co     urse, officials and the marshals were brilliant, water stations with gels, energy drinks and water, the crowds on the course, for all the races I have ran this is one of the best, I couldn't find fault with any of it, maybe the official pictures when they come out though.

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Session Days & Times


  • Tuesday at the Guisborough Sports Centre, Laurence Jackson School pan> Google Map
    • 6pm to 7.30pm  11yrs to seniors) Technical & Fitness
    • 6pm to 8pm  Seniors  road & off road
  • Wednesday at St. Thomas Church Hall, New Marske Google Map
    • 6pm to 7.30pm  Seniors  road & off road
  • Thursday 6-8pm Guisborough Sports Centre, Laurence Jackson School
    • 6pm to 7pm - Minnows (8 to 11yrs)
    • 5pm to 6pm  11yrs to Seniors  Weights & other Technical Sessions
    • 6pm to 8pm  Seniors  road & off road  (There is currently a waiting list for Seniors wanting coaching on a Thursday Evening)
  • Saturday at St. Thomas Church Hall, New Marske
    • 9am to 11.30am  Seniors - road & off road
  • Plus other session arranged by individual coaches


Who does what:
Cross Country
Road Running
Track & Field
Fell Running
Trail Running

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