I’m Jim Martin, 62, and I ran 20 consecutive London Marathons from when I was 39 to when I was 59 – all on behalf of St Joseph’s Hospice in Hackney. My Mother-in-Law passed away in St Joseph’s as I was training for my first London Marathon. The care, attention and love she received during the last 10 days of her life have motivated me to raise money for the charity over 20 years.
I’ve never really taken racing very seriously, and fast times have always been a bit beyond me – I run for the enjoyment! I’m doing the Clarendon Marathon because it is “off road”, and for the scenery and the atmosphere. I have a nephew whose family lives in Salisbury and another who lives outside Winchester – so it seemed very appropriate.
Over the years I have developed a set of rules for Marathon running which might help some people who are preparing:
- Don’t be a casualty – if it starts to hurt, start walking!
- The only time that counts is the great time you have on the day – a great time is more important than a fast time!
- Don’t make appointments in your head that your body can’t keep!
- Have fun while training. Have a training plan, weave your training into your regular activities.
- Look after your health regardless of your training demands. If you have a problem get it diagnosed and treated.
- Invest in good shoes that suit you and never wear new shoes on race day.
- Plan your long training run, or you’ll suffer on the day. Practise eating, drinking, and dealing with wet weather or hot weather
- Sunday is race day, so Saturday is drinking water day (6 pints) and Friday is food day (eat double everything!). Eat and drink as soon as you finish, this will help you recover.
- Blog, Facebook, let everyone know you’ve done it, enjoy your triumph!
- Fundraise – Running a Marathon is a bonkers thing to do and sometimes you need a reason – fundraising for a favourite charity will give you that reason.