Snowdonia Marathon - beautiful! A great day
Wow what a day. If a certain Danish lager did marathon days , then well , it would not be too dissimilar to this. As this was my first attempt at the Snowdonia Marathon, having watched the last 2 years (in pouring rain) - my only real goal was to enjoy. A seconday goal was - if at all possible- to have a go at running under 5hours. This race is certainly different to any other of the 22 marathons i have done - it has big hills. The first a significant pull up from LLanberis to Pen Y Pass in the first 5 miles. And another hill at 22 to 24 miles after Waunfawrn to Bwlch y Groes , before the steep final hill down to the finish in Llanberis high street. So i printed 3 pace bands to aim for a finish of 4hrs 59minutes. - for a pace of approx 11minutes 24sec per mile. Running with Anthony we were a couple of minutes within this up to Pen Y Pass and beyond, until around 14 to 16 mile when he was struggling. Having been told to go ahead, i did so. And chatted with others and kept my pace and paced my gel taking , to take a caffeine high5 brand gel at around 18 miles, and then another at 21 or so miles . This and also the early good pacing led to me feeling good for the last few miles. How good it is late in a race to hold your pace and go past others slowing down. That was my experience at the 2012 Snowdonia marathon . I put my music on ( not using earphones) at around 23 miles while staring up the hill from Waenfawr. Energy, and tempo, theme from i'm still standing Elton John: 500 miles Proclaimers ; eye of the tiger, and some audio fuel. And coming down from the last hill i had remembered its steepness, concentrated on just staying on my feet & keeping as much pace as possible. the last full mile in under 10minute miling , then the last 0.2mile in just over 7minute miling, < all effort to acheive the sub 5hours by 40 seconds or so - official finish time 4hrs 59minutes 8seconds. Job done.