The third of 3 entries and not a ring or hobbit in sight.
This is the last blog about this years Edinburgh Marathon (I promise, Mr Frodo). The blog wouldn't be complete without tying up the loose ends that have been washing around my asphalt imprinted mind. I've spent days mentally re-running parts of the course. Does that make me a saddo? (yes..Ed)
After the post race cold showers, there was a general consensus that the heat was worth 5 minutes of lost speed. Some said eight and I assumed their time had been slightly over the 3:05. Running in poor conditions does give you some comfort that you could have gone quicker. Although you'll never be sure what or how you would have performed had conditions been 'ideal'. Had some M.P come into my post race office and looked in my drawer, there would have been a note saying 'Sorry, We've spent all the energy. None left!'
There are some nice photos offered for sale in hard and digital format by the marathon organisers and once I manage to save the tidy sum required, I might put in my order. Its mightily reassuring to have a picture of yourself in distress in the sun after 26 miles of running (and in high definition focus as well). Alternatively you can sit back and take the roadrunpics.com slideshow. Most of their shots are excellent. I only managed to find one of me in this event (above). It was taken as the runner in front of me had just swerved and cut across my path after Musselburgh race course (at around 8 miles) to give a lad with a microphone who was keeping the punters 'entertained' with his own brand of hi-paced race humour a high-five. Runner in front then turns behind to apologise. I recall summoning up a grunt in acknowledgement. A nod or forgiving smile was out of the question. Too much effort.
At Portobello, one kid pointed and yelled 'there's a pirate' as I ran past. It was a measurable improvement on the verbiage I got from some of the locals at the earlier North Berwick Race.
The runner in the foreground finished 3rd female. She skipped past me at 5 miles and I am embarrased to admit I initially thought she had just 'joined in' as we ran along the Portobello promenade. Iphone in hand, tanned and with the words 'smurfette' on the back of her t-shirt, another runner beside made a comment as to who she was as she bounced casually ahead with a high knee lift. I suggested she may be an international getting some training in and then, reconsidering, thought she might be in the relay event.I didn't give it a minutes more thought as I regressed into my own private hell run for the next few miles. She still had a minute on me at 14 miles and it wasn't until near the turn at Gosford Hall while wrestling with the dark fire in a hazy mix of heatstroke and mild confusion that I passed her. She finished it turns out in 2:58 and the newspapers didn't take long to get hold of this speed merchant. Pretty impressive running. I wonder where I can get a smurf t-shirt from.
Finally, as I consider whether this start is the end of my marathon career, I wondered what London would be like. Should I or should'nt I? Will the beer be warm?.Who is Smeagol anyway? Or I could combine a holiday abroad with a run; maybe do Boston. Now that's more than a feeling...