So in terms of magnificent views, organisation and running banter I am not sure you could beat the Loch Ness marathon. A great mornings run along the south side of Loch Ness.
The day kicked off at about 7.30am where all 3,500 runners met at Bught Park so they could get transported to the start line at the other end of Loch Ness – somewhere in between Fort Augustus and Foyers. The start was literally in the middle of the hills with only sheep there to cheer you on.
The first two miles were straight down hill which was probably my first mistake – I think I made the first mile marker in 5 minutes 40 seconds….ooops there goes the big marathon alert buzzer for stupidity. Anyway caught up in the fever I continued onwards at a slightly slower pace but enjoying the view and watching the miles burn away. I think my 10k time was about 38mins, 13 mile time of 84 mins and implosion time at 20 miles of 132mins. Things were going quite well up until then. Unlike the Edinburgh marathon in May when my entire body went into meltdown this time it was just the legs…but boy did they buckle. From there on in it was head down and a really tough last six miles to the finish. Final time of 3hrs 15mins. It literally took an hour for me to complete the last six miles. Pacing, Pacing, Pacing….must remember that for the next time!!!
Despite all that as a marathon course and event I thought it was excellent and after the largest bad boy burger one could buy and consume quickly it was back home to Edinburgh on the train…happy days.
The one extra prize of the day was receiving a free tin of Baxters soup in the goody bag at the end. The only thing that topped that off was seeing one of the other punters on the train drink his cold from the can on the way home….I think he got off in Kirkaldy!!
I would certainly recommend this race for next year if anyone is looking for a good marathon experience. No sign of any other Harriers so apologies if I have not made any particular mention. I think maybe Vicky was doing the 10k.