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Digital Subscriptions > Men's Running > Jul-17 > Racing ahead

Racing ahead

Racing ahead With the Big Marathon Challenge at an end, the team reflect on an incredible journey – and look ahead to the next test

BIG MARATHON CHALLENGE

Name: Stephen Ingledew

Age: 54

Job: Financial services executive

Location: Edinburgh

Marathon: London

Twitter: @IngledewStephen

The whole occasion at London was absolutely fantastic and it was a real privilege to be part of such a special event. I’m still buzzing from the wonderful atmosphere and I enjoyed it even more than my first London Marathon five years ago. As for the race itself, I came in at 3:12, which is three minutes slower than my personal best and a long way short of the three-hour target time. However, halfway round I realised I would need to reset my target time and I decided to aim for sub-3:15 to get a ‘good for age’ time.

Having reset my target time, I was able to conserve energy for the final stretch, which in turn meant I was able to really enjoy the final three miles or so along the Embankment and up to the Mall – soaking up the fantastic support. I never realised I could enjoy the last 10K of a marathon so much and it made it my favourite part of the race; I didn’t want it to end!

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About Men's Running

Motivational mantras, preferably overlaid onto a picture of a runner in a dramatic landscape, are ubiquitous on social media. That isn’t to say they don’t have their uses: I have a couple of things I mutter to myself when the going gets tough although they’re unsuitable for publication unfortunately. I don’t believe the no one-size-fits-all mantras work because every runner is unique and has their own motivations. This variety is reflected in the sheer breadth of organised events available to runners right now. Which is why we’ve curated a list of 100 race (page 57) from both the UK and abroad, that we feel represents the scope of running for the remainder of 2017. From 10Ks to ultras, from road to trail, there’s something here for the beginner, veteran or just anyone who wants to simply try something new. Speaking of races The Marathon des Sables has been given the sobriquet of ‘toughest race on the planet’ so we felt duty bound to find out for ourselves if this claim is true. Our runner’s report (page 34) tells us that while ability is obviously essential, being able to get along with and support your fellow runners is the most important attribute required. Of course not every run has to be a race and there’s still satisfaction to be found in creating your own running adventures (page 21) or building goals from the reams of data floating around out there (page 42). Again it’s down to what individual runners want from their sport. All running together but with different destinations.
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