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Snowdonia Marathon completed !

(Left) Christine, myself and Paul trying to keep warm before the start.

Oh my god, what a marathon. It's brutish and beautiful in equal measure. The route challenges you to climb over 800 metres, ascended predominantly over 3 big hills.

I was very well trained, for a flat marathon ! While my fitness was not really tested, my leg muscles, particularly my hip flexors, were severely fatigued by the top of the second long hill out of Bethgelert. As a consequence the next seven miles, all into a strong head wind, were sheer purgatory.

Ascending the first major climb to Pen-y-Pass.

It was a profound relief to reach mile 22 at Waunfawr, where the route turns up hill for the final big climb, because it was unrunnable. Like most of those around me, I walked as fast as possible to the top of the hill. At about 23.5 miles I saw a familiar figure ahead, my mate Paul. I managed to catch him and together we plodded the final 2.5 miles down the ridiculously steep hill into Llanberis. By this stage my right knee was feeling unstable on the steep slopes so I was forced to limp the steepest bits. Before you have time to realise how close the finish is, we turned a corner onto the high street of Llanberis which was lined by crowds to cheering supporters. Then all of a sudden Paul and I crossed the finish line together recording identical times of 4 hours 27 mins and 34 seconds.

Christine finished in a time of 5 hours 37 mins and 28 seconds, 15 minutes quicker than her 2017 time.

Paul and I running down Llanberis high street. A rare photo with both runners flying i.e. both feet in mid-air.

Paul and I finishing the Snowdonia Marathon (watch at 1:53:00)

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