Cajsa brings us tales of The Fellsman
After all my hype about Mary Keitany being the fastest, but a bit of a gung-ho-hero and therefore not a predictable runner to back, of course she only went and ran a carefully measured race. Well, I suppose after a 2nd and NY last year and a bit of a blow-up at London she decided it was time to play it safe and bag a win and not only that but a 4th win at NY and a win in the second fastest time for that course.
After a steady early effort which took Keitany, Cheruiyot, Flanagan, Huddle, Tusa, Linden, Weightman & Daska all through half way within 1:15:49-53 Mary Keitany wound up the pace at 20-25k with her 17-19th miles all run at under 5'00/mile and the second half in 1:06:58 which is 27s faster than Molly Huddle's american record for the half marathon. Only Rahma Tusa really worked hard to stay with Keitany, but trying to do so led to a late fade that both Cheruiyot and Flanagan picked up on one after the other to finish in 2:26:02 and 2:26:22 respectively. A crazy-mad 8:52 negative split from shows just how much within herself Keitany must have been in those early stages. @jgault13 made an interesting point on twitter about the speed of her 10k from 25-35k of the race compared to Linden, Huddle and Flanagan.
Mary Keitany's split from 25k to 35k in the 2018 NYC Marathon was 30:53.— Jonathan Gault (@jgault13) November 4, 2018
For reference, 10k track PRs
Des Linden: 31:37
Shalane Flanagan: 30:22
Molly Huddle: 30:13
Whilst I'm a bit sad that Flanagan couldn't retain the title it's worth noting that her 3rd place was 30s faster than her winning time last year and on balance I think a race is more interesting than a time trial (albeit that the women's race wasn't quite such and exciting finish as the men's).
Anyway - enough about the obvious stuff - you can read all about that everywhere else (RunnersWorld/ LetsRun / Fast Running). Let's work through the fun stuff lower down the list with help from my geeky spreadsheet of joy. The podium followed the pre-race ranking order but Molly Huddle had a stormer of a race, being the only one in the top 5 to run a PB and finish 4th (ranked 8th going in).
So, three Americans finished in the top six of the Women’s division for the first time since 1978: 3rd Shalane Flanagan (2:26:22) 4th Molly Huddle (2:26:44) 6th. Des Linden (2:27:51). But Des, Oh Des, I wanted you to win so bad. I'll be interested to see what she has to say about the race in the next week or so. That end-of-race speed training she's been working at paid off to some extent with her running a 3:51 negative split but not enough to chase down Tusa. So who else managed to get a PB? Well, 8 of the top 25 did do with the biggest ones being for Belaynesh Fikadu, ETH (8:14) Eva aka Caroline Almkvist SWE (8:01 PB) and Sarah Sellers, USA (7:27 PB and, hurrah!, just inside the 'A' standard qualifying time for the Olympic Trials in 2020 with 2:36:37). Sarah Sellers has already been through the 'whoooooooo?!' phase after her breakout 2nd place in Boston but it's 23 year old Almkvist who's the surprise unknown in the NYC results. She came 3rd in the Stockholm marathon earlier this year and like Sarah is not a professional runner and did not have an elite start.
Allie Kiefer was another one to live up to her pre-race hype with a solid 7th place and a PB to boot. I particularly love that she says 'in hindsight I could have run smarter... my goal was to reach the podium...', firstly because she's just like the rest of us who always think we could have run better after the race and are filled with what-if's(just ask my coach!) and secondly because she doesn't skate over her pre-race goal of a podium place - she acknowledges that is didn't happen.
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NYC, you threw an incredible party! Thank you for the cheers, I felt so loved and supported out on the streets! I finished in 7th place, as the 4th American, with a new PR of 2:28:12. Although in hindsight I feel like I could have run smarter, I gave it 100% and that’s all I can ask of myself. My goal was to make it to the podium, and I was far from reaching that, but it would be foolish to get caught up being sad by other’s amazing performances. I’m humbled by the women that crossed the finish line before me. And I hope next time I’m another step closer to making that dream a reality. . . If you’re still in NY, I’ll be at a NY Times event at the Merkin Concert Hall tonight at 7pm to chat with @des_linden & @stephrothstein about what it’s like to be a female athlete in 2018. If you don’t have a ticket yet, you can use the code Teamnyt for a $10 ticket (link is in my bio)! See you there! . . 📷: @urimiscott . . #progressnotperfection #tcsnycmarathon #nyc #strongnotskinny #runner
Lisa Weightman is pretty happy with an 8th place for Australia, commenting that while training she was also working 4 days a week, looking after the family and building a house. And for the Ultra-lovers out there it's exciting to see that Gerda Steyn of Two Oceans & Comrades fame is easily able to play with the big Girls in the 26.2 as well, finishing in 13th with a 6min PB.
|Rank by PR||Rank in NY||New York 2018||Name||Age||Country||Marathon PR||Plus or Minus PB||1st half||2nd half||Positive / negative split|
I could go on forever poring over these stats and the happy or gritted-teeth insta posts from the after-event runners but it's time to wind this up and put away the Marathon Majors until 2019
The result leaves the leaderboard for the Abbot World Marathon Majors Series XII after Berlin '18, Chicago '18 and New York '18 as follows:
1. Brigid Kosgei KEN 25
2. Gladys Cherono KEN 25
3. Mary Keitany KEN 25
4. Rolza Dereje ETH 16
5. Ruti Aga ETH 16
6. Vivian Cheruiyot KEN 16
7. Shalane Flanagan USA 9
8. Shure Demise ETH 9
9. Tirunesh Dibaba ETH 9
Tokyo, Boston, London and Berlin 2019 are still to come.
Also of interest is the fact that by running under 2:23, Keitany was awarded $45,000 on top of her $100,000 for first place.
-- FOOTNOTE : WORLD MARATHON MAJOR RULES--
If there’s a tie at the end of a Series, the winner is determined using the following rules (addressed in descending order):
The athlete with the best head-to-head record in Qualifying Races during the Series will be declared the winner. Only the fact that one athlete finished ahead of the other will be taken into account and not by how many places nor whether those athletes scored points in that head-to-head contest.
The athlete who has won the most Qualifying Races during the period.
The athlete who the majority of the six Abbott World Marathon Majors Race Directors determines to be the champion. The Race Directors may decide to award the title jointly.
Top British club runners in London marathon plus results of Blackpool, Zurich, Southampton and Vienna
More if you click through
It's time for another Women's running roundup - looking at events that have happened and previewing ones ahead. As always, let me know if there's anything I've missed or you want covering in the future.
Old Mutual Two Oceans Marathon
Won by South Africa’s 28yo Gerda Steyn (great Twitter account) I love the quote she gave : “I woke up this morning not planning to win, but just to run my best and stick to my plan”. Clearly that plan was perfect as she overtook Poland’s Stelmach within sight of the finish! It was Steyn’s second appearance at the race and Stelmach’s debut, so some strong performances. Steyn’s Marathon PB is 2:37:22 from Valencia last year. The course record still stands at 3:30:36, set by Frith van der Merwe (SA) in 1989
1. Gerda Steyn (03:39:31) - Nedbank Running Club Gauteng North
2. Dominika Stelmach (03:41:56) - Poland
3. Charne Bosman (03:45:20) - Nedbank Running Club Gauteng North
Won by Cape Town’s Nolene Conrad - not long after getting 25th place at the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships earlier this month. The
1. Nolene Conrad (01:16:17) - KPMG Running Club WP
2. Betha Chikanga (01:16:42) - Maxed Elite International (Zimbabwe)
3. Susy Chemaimak (01:17:01) - Nedbank RC International (Kenya)
European Master Indoors Athletics Championships (EMAIC)
GB &NI came second in the medal table. Full results here
60m W35 Claire Spurway - 7.83
200m W35 Claire Spurway - 25.58
800m W35 Fiona De Mauny - 2:12:28
4x200m Relay W35 - 1:46:40 (FLOWERS Joanna - RILEY Hannah - MCLOUGHLIN Susie - SPURWAY Claire)
200m W40 Susie McLoughlin - 25.63
400m W40 Susie McLoughlin - 58.02 (MR)
800m W40 Lisa Palmer -Blount - 2.17.17
3000m W40 Lisa Palmer -Blount - 10.04.45
3000m W40 Louise Rudd - 10.27.61
Won by Melanie Wilkins of Winchester and District AC in 57:52 - 38 th place OA
2nd place to Amy Clements of Kent AC in 58:21 - 42nd place OA
15/4 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games Marathon
7.20am local time. 10:20pm on the 14th UK time. Official details here.
Aly Dixon and Sonia Samuels are at the preparation camp in Brisbane after Sonia had a stop off in Adelaide with husband Nick as they celebrated their wedding anniversary - see her blog here.
and Aly has been finding the humidity hard
Things I've learnt in my first 3 days in Brisbane...— Aly Dixon (@alydixon262) March 29, 2018
1) high humidity is a killer!! 😰
but has been out recce-ing the course with National coach Dr Andi Drake
7/4 - Centurion’s South Downs Way 50 - 5700ft elevation. Starting in Worthing and finishing in Eastbourne, this 50 mile race has a women's course record of 7:09:21 set in 2014 by Edwina Sutton.
This year’s field is strong though, so the record may fall. Doctor Sarah Morwood (spartathlon profile // twitter // ultra running interview) , who holds the second fastest time, has to be favourite. After winning SDW 100 last year, a top 10 finish at Spartalthon and re-selection for the GB Trail Team (where she will represent her country in Portugal in May) she looks like a pretty safe bet even despite starting the year with hamstring tendinopathy. Other contenders are Kim Cavill - Hardmoors winner and Lakeland 2nd place runner, Annabelle Stearns - who has 2x 2nd place on the SDW 100, and Charley Jennings - 50mile Centurion Slam record holder.
Other than Gemma Hockett, there’ll be plenty more running it - more soon.
8/4 - Paris Marathon
Purity Rionoripo, last year’s winner doesn’t seem to be returning to defend her title after a recent DNF at Tokyo Marathon in February .
Only 25% of entrants are women, compared to Boston Marathon which was 45% in 2017 and the UK marathon race average back in 2015 was 30% according to the Guardian. The UK is the second highest participating county (unsurprisinlgly).
The full elite field is listed here , with Ethiopia’s Amane Gobena having the fastest time (2:21:51) to her name. Originally from Kenya but based in France since 2003, the 2008 winner Martha Komu has the fastest European time of the elites (2:25:33). I’m particularly interested in her as she competed in her home county at XC and road, then moved to Europe ansd after a maternity break in 2005, she returned to competition in 2006 and won the Mont Saint-Michel marathon, her debut marathon.
15/4 Brighton Marathon
16/14 - Boston Marathon (cracking field, though lacking in any GB athletes - more about this soon)
22/4 - London Marathon (WR attempt - more about this soon)
I'm a (marathon) running geek. I love listening to podcasts, watching races, reading coverage. Last Saturday I tuned into coverage of the IAAF/Trinidad Alfonso World Half Marathon Championships in Valencia and was pleased to see the women getting good coverage as their race began ahead of the men.
However, once the men set off in rather pedestrian manner (admittedly with a fearsome finish) and the 1st woman had come home (in world record time) there was very little mention of the rest of the ladies' performance and, more frustratingly, no mention of the finishing times/ placings of the female GB team until much later. Don't get me wrong, I don't think women's running is any more important and I know commentators have to focus on the big 'guys', but I want to hear about people I can relate to (ok at least a bit more!) and how else will they become household names without the coverage? Anyway, it got me thinking, and as a result I've decided that I want to take a more active interest in women's racing. Primarily the (semi) elite field for half / full marathon distance but also at grass roots and amateur level over other distances. So I'm going to try and do a weekly post on here highlighting women's results and telling you the bits and pieces I've found interesting. It's more than likely it'll be a series of links to other people's coverage that you could find for yourself, but I'll try and pull it all together into one spot and comment on twitter too. Bear with me. I'm learning about it all as I go. (Also, please tell me if you know of any races you want highlighting or any ladies that you want noting, even if they are just your mates!)
So without further ado. Here's last weekend's headlines:
The IAAF/Trinidad Alfonso World Half Marathon Championships in Valencia was won by Ethiopia’s Netsanet Gudeta (Kebede) in a women's only World Record breaking time of 1:06:11. The favourite, Joyciline Jepkosgei led at 5k but by 10k the winner was largely decided and second place was 1:06:54 in the end.
British team captain Charlotte Purdue (PB 1:10:29) finished in 21st place (1:11:21) which was an improvement of 12 places from the previous World Half Champs in Cardiff.
The rest of the team were:
31st Charlotte Arter 1:11:52
42rd Tracy Barlow 1:12:35 PB
48th Gemma Steel 1:13:39
53rd Faye Fullerton 1:13:56 PB
Tracy and Charlotte are both signed up for London Marathon next month, so will have been judging their performances with that in mind. Not sure if Gemma and Faye are doing the same or targeting other races, or if this was an A race.
It was pretty windy out there and even rained heavily at the end, though nothing compared to Cardiff the previous time. The support along the route looked rather patchy which was a shame, though sweetly the organisers tweeted me to confirm that it's normally better!
Also on the 24th were the SIAB Schools international XC ll and Home Countries International XC at at Wollaton Hall, Nottingham
SIAB Junior girls 4k (boys 4.5k) u15 (32 Runners): 1st Bea Wood (England)14:04 and 13 seconds clear of 2nd place. England won the team the team rankings
SIAB Inter girls 4.5k (boys 6k) u17 (31 runners): 1st Ella McNivern (England) 16:24 and9s clear of second place. England won the team rankings.
Home Countries International XC
Junior women 6k (men 8k) u20: 1st Julia Paternain 22:01, 10s clear. England won team rankings
Senior women 8k (men 10k): 1st Elle vernon 28:54, 45 seconds clear. England won team rankings
Full results http://www.englishcrosscountry.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/siab18.pdf
Athletics weekly report :
To look forward to...
31/3 - Two Oceans Marathon (ultra - 56k) - IMAGINE PACING THAT!)
1/4 - Dorset Ooser and Alexander the Great, Greece
4/4 - 15/4
8/4 - Paris Marathon
16/14 - Boston Marathon (cracking field, though lacking in any GB athletes - more about this soon)
22/4 - London Marathon (WR attempt - more about this soon)
By the way:
The aim of this blog, if you've ever wondered, is to be an un-fluffy voice of women's running. There's plenty of guys out there talking about the logistics and splits of their marathon training, but when I started this I found that there weren't many women out there doing the same. Most fitness / running blogs with a female voice were much more about starting to run, the gear, self image, reviewing different types of cross training and races, etc. All of these are incredibly valuable, indeed, I've personally found them very useful. However, I wanted to hear from someone who owned up to being, well, a little more openly Type-A about their training . I wanted to know what sessions they were running and what paces they were hitting, especially when it came to Marathon training, and I wanted that person to have a double X to their chromosomes and a full time job / full time family life . Since starting this blog, I have come across more and more ladies (especially in the ultra-running sphere) fitting the bill, but I still feel like this is in the minority. Perhaps it's because it doesn't make for an interesting blog. Fair enough! But that's what I'll be doing here...
So there it was. My last marathon for a year, at least. Gulp.
Gulp, for a variety of reasons.
Gulp, for the uncertainty I mentioned in my preview post that meant I felt like a newbie marathoner again. Gulp, for the concern that however much I know it's fine to run a marathon when pregnant and I'd had a backup go-ahead from the ultrasound-scan-doctor only 5 days before, still what if something happened? Finally, gulp, because this is my happy place and for all the talk of not relying on running to find my joy (and I don't, there's more to life) this still remains a comfort zone of endorphin filled smiles for me and a place where I've found that I might occasionally be something a smidgen more than average and now I will have to put my money where my mouth is and enjoy what running my body and new permanent job will allow and take it as it comes. But underlying all of that, the bubbling excitement that I get to run a marathon and heck well, let's do this.
--Sorry: a bit of an epic write up. Skip to the bottom for splits ----
We stayed with friends in the Wirral the night before and thanks to my Florence time I had Elite entry which meant guaranteed free parking onsite (others could park but had to pay £3) , indoor changing area, loos and even food afterwards. Jackpot! However, we had just polished off our pasta (not too much) dinner when I received an email from the organiser saying that due to the rain the previous day, they were not offering parking onsite anymore. On checking with my race-liasion lady (who was answering emails at 10pm - legend!) she confirmed that we might not be able to park unless we got there at 6.15am. Argh! We looked at train and other options but decided to just hope for the best and arrive at 7.30 as planned and see what happened. I don't think I would have been that chilled if I was gunning for a PB.
Race morning and Mr B seemed pretty chilled. We drove to the racecourse and straight into a free parking spot, the organisers were doing a fantastic job. I didn't hear of a single person having trouble finding a space somewhere.
The weather had been saying rain at different times with varying strength on and off during the preceding week and the morning was a mild, grey one. Not bad marathon weather. The elite space was brill - ok the ladies only had one loo because you don't get many female jockeys, but there wasn't enough people for it to be an issue. Tea, coffee and seats were provided for a host of terriflyingly speedy looking runners, many of them in England vests because it was the inaugural England Age Group Marathon. I even had time to meet Cathy, another Full Potential runner who went on to storm her firstmarathon (and yes Cathy, I'm jealous you're off to Florence)
At 8.45 after even more loo-stops than usual (hello pregnancy bladder) we were walked to the start line. Mr B and I ducked out of the Elite pen and back a few rows to get near his 3:15 pacer (I stood nearish, but not near enough to be running with him. As it happened, we all shuffled up and I ended up starting a bit ahead of him in the pens, despite being sure that 3:30 was an optimistic target. I had thought a few times before that it would be nice to justify my place in the elite entry by getting 3:15 (though it's sub 3 for a free place) but my main thought was that a London Good For Age and BQ while pregnant was quite a nice aim.
Ben FP and I had chatted before and agreed that because I take longer to get into stride now, I'd go out at about 8'00/mi but not look at the watch and then ease it up if I felt good and not go under 7'00/mi (ha!). I was nervous before starting as I'd not run more than 13miles for many weeks and a lot changes each week when you're putting on kgs here and there!
Up out of the race course and into the streets of Chester, the marathon calm descended on me almost straight away. As always, I found the patter of feet and breathing of those around me almost meditative. I was surprised at how quickly we hit an uphill but kept pottering on and enjoying the modest crowds through the town centre. First mile at 7'32 - a bit fast but fine, I can settle down now. Down past the Cathedral and off to cross the river and head out of town. I stopped looking at my watch, and now looking back I see I did a 6'58 there, but it was down hill so it doesn't really count. The next few miles I can't really remember other than hearing the 3:15s chatting behind me at one point and thinking that I might as well stay ahead if I felt fine as I had no idea what the later miles would feel like.
I was surprised by how quickly the time I'd normally take my first gel (High Five, Orange) crept up (about 45mins in - just over 6 miles). In past races I've been completely ready for it, waiting for it in fact, but this time I waited a bit longer because I didn't feel the need yet (though obviously you have to pre-empt the need for the fuel). I ended up running with a bit of a group and we exchanged a few comments and a bit of a discussion about two of them going to Comrades next year.
At some point just after this I ended up chatting to a guy called Dean Allaway. He was running his 98th marathon and we had a lovely time talking about all the different races he'd done and various marathon experiences. He had a cold so was looking for the 3:15-3:30 mark, tops and we realised we were a bit towards the top end of that but it just felt good chatting and running. It's funny - before we started talking I wouldn't have said I could keep the pace AND have a conversation, but clearly I could!
At around mile 10 you cross into Wales, though I clearly wasn't paying attention! The weather was still grey and pleasant and there were little pockets of supporters along the way. The water stations were well stocked (with tiny bottles, not cups - yey!) but I saw a few people (actually, I think all wearing England vests) walking back the other way. I normally take my next gel at 1:20 so being a creature of habit, that's what I did, though not the whole thing. I took a couple of sips of water at every aid station as I was conscious that the main advice for pregnant ladies is that you need to stay well hydrated.... which is ironic giving the need for the loo all the time!
Miles 13-15 are the the only section where it loops and you get to see runners coming the other way. I love this on marathon courses as you get a real boost shouting for each other, especially on the quieter races. I was feeling the effort in my knees now - something I've not had before, but I guess it's the change in gait and extra weight. I wondered how long I'd keep up the pace for as I was still averaging under my 7'27/mi, which I knew was Mr B's target pace for 3:15.
Back through Holt and Farndon and out of Wales again, there were some good crowds and a couple of bands to give a boost. A good thing too, since there was a kicker of a hill at just before mile 17 and 2 hrs in. I later found out that this was the point where Mr B really suffered, and I'll be honest I nearly stopped and walked but I was still really enjoying it and I didn't want to stop unless it was for health reasons. I also knew that it was time to take some of the next gel at around the 2 hr mark, so it was something to give me a boost (by the way, Torq Rhubarb and Custard are surprisingly nice!)
After that, the next few miles were more effort but still comfortable and we were joined by the Metric Marathon runners coming the other way. Again, I found this a real help as it gave me new people to pull me along. It's funny though how different people's minds work different ways, as Mr B found it really dispiriting seeing fresh looking people at this point.
I was wondering when we'd get back into Chester and also thinking about the famed hill at mile 24, but still cheering other runners and enjoying the countryside. It's never *easy* doing the last 6 miles of a marathon, so I'd be lying if I said I wasn't thinking about a nice sit down at points, but in general it felt comfy. I had a few chats with the bump/hitch-hiker along the way and told him that he just needed to give me a good kick if he wasn't happy and I'd stop right then! It had started drizzling by now and I was quite glad of the coolness. I had a caffeine gel which I could take for extra oomph at the end if I wanted but I decided not to bother as I felt like I'd had plenty of sugar by then.
It's not until miles 23/24 that you start to get back into the city and by now people were starting to egg each other on to hit times. I eased off the pace a bit in the hope I'd see the 3:15 crew and saw a few people I'd chatted to further back. At this point I was taken under the wing of a very sweet guy who told me to 'leave it all out there'. I didn't have the heart to tell him I wasn't planning to do that today! He told me that the 3:15's were way back (implying they were far off pace) and so I figured I might as well just try and sneak in under it. Mile 24 was actualy quite a bit of incline, but they have "race angels' who run from the bottom of the hill to the top with you and then send you on your way. A really nice idea.
Round the corner, down along the river and despite the drizzle there was a good turn out lining the route back to the racecourse. I knew I had 3:15 in my sights and couldn't quite believe it, so it was great to relax into the finish. You enter the race course on the bend and run the final section on grass. This was largely ok, though a bit squidgy and I hear it got really boggy later, which is pretty tough at the end of a marathon! As I came down the home straight I even managed to put in a tiny spurt of speed and over take a couple of people.
I crossed the line in 3:13:08 - a time that a year ago would have been disappointing, but which I'm stoked about. More to the point I had an absolute blast. I could have carried on running at the end too.
I stopped as soon as I got over the line to wait for the 3:15 gang to come in. They just about timed it perfectly, as did the 3:30's but no Mr B. It was hard to know whether to wait or go and get my phone so in the end I dashed back to the elite area to grab my bag. On the way I bumped into our mate Aaron who was also running but was in need of a sit down and some sugar, so he came with me (thanks to the organisers for letting him in). Shortly after, Mr B rocked up looking his cheeky self and fine. He'd been bang on pace for the first 13 miles, then had to ease it off a bit and then mile 17-20 just wasn't happening for him. At this point the rain had started and he got too cold so he got the refuge bus back to base.
A shower, some sandwiches and some friendly chats with the winner of the ladies Metric race (who donated her champagne to Aaron) we set off home. I'm sad Mr B didn't get the race he deserved but I think it was just one of those days.
Oh, and the hitch-hiker has been plenty active since, so he's obviously not too annoyed with me for dragging him on a 26.2 mile trip and a VLM Championship qualifying time. Now, it's time to put my money where my mouth is and just enjoy running as and when I can and enjoy supporting Mr B on his journey to VLM 2018.
|Splits||Avg Pace||Avg HR|