Yep, 10 days to go until my first stand-alone marathon at the National Marathon on March 29th and last night was my final long run before I begin my recovery week on Saturday. Fortunately the rain held off until this morning and I was able to get a 2 hour run without getting soaked.
So the run was for 2 hours and I was using it as a good test at close to race pace running the final 40 minutes at a faster pace than the first 80 minutes.
To be honest I have no idea at what pace I will be able to run the marathon. According to the many "Rules of Thumb" in the running world I should be at 2hrs 50mins for the marathon based upon my most recent half marathon time (Marathon time = 1/2 marathon x 2 plus 5 mins). This works out at 6:30min/miles.
So based on that pace I ran last night at about 6:36min/miles for 18.2miles.....and it felt good (even with carrying the two water bottles!). The first 80 mins was run at about 6:40min/miles and then the final 10km was done in 40 mins at 6:27min/miles. It has given me a lot of confidence for the 29th as the pace was comfortable (or as comfortable as a 18 mile run can be) and I maintained the hydration/gel plan without any stomach duress.
What's the aim for the marathon then? I am aiming to go under 3 hours and would be stoked with a 2hr 50min time.....if things go right on race day I think that the 2hr 50min time is definitely doable. However, the final six miles when the infamous wall is lurking at every corner can be the undoing of many a good time!