The End of the Line

Well, it looks like the marathon photo session is at an end. I’ve added new pics today in my Dublin City Marathon 2014 page.

If you scroll on down through that page you will find some of those runners I snapped from the 3:20 pacers right through to the 5:00 hour pacers just before Mile 5 on Chesterfield Avenue in the Phoenix Park.

There are two more posts concerning this year’s marathon with my kerbside highly uninformed commentary here and another post regarding the marathon photographs here.

The photo gallery on this post is a selection of my favourites from the latter section of the marathon. While everything is terribly serious for the sub-three hour crew, from a kerb-side perspective, the marathon gets to be even more fun as it rolls along.

Back to the land of the running now.

Or it would be if I didn’t fall on Sunday. Darn. More anon!

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Another Marathon

Another day, another marathon. But, no, not of the running kind.

 

100

Runners at the Phoenix Monument, Chesterfield Avenue, Phoenix Park, Dublin

I spent the morning wading through the mountain-there’s over a thousand-of pics I took at yesterday’s Dublin City Marathon.

Naturally, having run a marathon once before, I am made of tough stuff. But, by the time I got pic number 100 uploaded onto my new Dublin City Marathon page, I was in need of a stack of gels. Although a fine red wine would have helped either.

Anyway, if you’ve been there you might want to browse through the pics here. And if you haven’t been there, you’ll get a feel for the whole experience by browsing through the pics anyway.

Today’s additions just takes you past the 3:10 pacer mark. All of the pics have been taken before the five mile point along Chesterfield Avenue, so all you runners look nice and fresh faced.

I’ll be adding more runners in the coming days, right along through to my people in the Third Wave.

Well done to one and all! Hope you’re not in too much pain today!

Dublin City Marathon 2014

Cyclist Chesterfield Avenue

Chesterfield Avenue, Phoenix Park

Chesterfield Avenue, Phoenix Park, Dublin waits to greet over four thousand athletes. Five miles away, at 8.50 am in Dublin city centre, the marathon had begun.

Áras

Home of our President: Áras an Uachtaráin

 

President Michael D. Higgins only had to step outside his front door to catch all the action. Meanwhile, I hung around the Phoenix monument. Maybe I’d catch sight of Michael D. or a man in a skirt, or a barefoot runner even.

Well, as the song says, two outta three ain’t bad….

Time 18 44

Lead car

There was a great buzz about the place. Buoyed up by the steady beat of music from a local pop station and armed with clappers and balloons, the crowd clustered about the monument, and  formed little knots along the footpath. Soon,  sirens sounded, and a great cheer arose at the sight of the first athlete pushing his way along the avenue.

Lead Wheelchair Athlete

Anyone give me a name for this athlete please?

Wonderful to watch, the wheelchair athletes must have serious arm  and upper body strength.

Lead Woman 28 18

Here come the women

 

He was followed, some ten minutes later, by the lead runner, Dmitry Safronov.

Lead Man

First man at the Phoenix monument

 

…while two clusters of leading men hung back, no doubt as part of their race strategy.

Leading Men

Leading men

 

Number three is Russian athlete, Aleksei Sokolov.

Leader Group two

More elites

Pavel Teplykh is leading this group along, followed by Ethiopian Fikru Teshager.

Leader Group 3

Who is this guy? I can’t see him on the results sheet.

And here’s… well, actually, I don’t know. There’s no sign of number 17 on the results page this evening. Help, anyone!

Lead Woman 2

Maria McCambridge

The lead lady couldn’t be far behind now, could she?

Yes, here she is~Maria McCambridge. Maria was intent on keeping her marathon first from last year and, while that didn’t quite run out, she ran a mighty race, gaining a personal best and a finishing an agonizing four seconds behind the winning lady.

woman 105

This lady was faring very well at this point too. She’s Gemma Rankin from Scotland.

And here’s a girl who was well able to keep up with the guys too.

Shorts

 

Relaxed Lady

While further along the line, this lady from Raheny Shamrocks looked very comfortable, making it all seem just like a nice little jaunt.

David Carrie

David Carrie

There’s David Carrie in white and blue shirt leading Team Carrie along and already looking set to earn another yet sub-3 hour marathon.

3 hour pacers

Three Hour Pacers

The three hour pacers brought a huge crowd with them.

Cool Shades

The cool shades and gloves worked well for this guy as he was making terrific progress at this point and completed the marathon in three hours four minutes and fourteen seconds.

Allez

There are pacers at every ten minutes at the DCM

While l`homme français was keeping up with the 3.10 pacers to the cries of “Allez!” from the crowd.

Conditions for running might have been a tad warm, if anything. A gentle south-westerly had brought temperatures up to the mid-teens and I marvelled at how oblivious some runners seemed to be to such heat.

Take this guy, for instance…

Warm

Today was practically balmy

Of course, he couldn’t possibly have been as warm as…

FLASH! A-ah….Saviour of the universe…

Oohh, it's hot in here

Flash Gordon

And there were other charitable folk about who suffered on for their cause too…

Skirt 2

A grand bit o`skirt!

 

Running Rossies

Another guy with a great sense of humour.

Though I am not sure if charity was the cause here. Perhaps he was being patriotic?

Kilt

I hope he has running shorts under that kilt…

Oh, and check out the barefoot look! I wonder how he fared by mile 26?

Barefoot

Ouch!

We’re only at mile five remember, and already the heat was getting to some folk.

Bare chest

Gosh, it’s warm…

 

And I wondered if this kid really stuck the pace? Three hours seems too long to be pushed around in a buggy.

 

Buggy

Mammy, Mammy, I want to get out!

It was striking how serious and focused everyone was in the first and second wave of runners.

They were so intent that they barely noticed the crazy lady photographer snapping at their feet. But as time wore on and the ordinary runners came along, there was a greater variation of expression. Some were there purely for a fun day out. For others, it had been a challenge to get to this point, and a challenge to work their way through it. These are my people, the Third Wavers.

Some took the waving literally.

Francis

Hi! to you too, Francis!

Other just laughed their way along

Thumbs up

Thumbs up!

Or clowned their way through the twenty six miles. Don’t you just love that outfit, though?

Clown

Oh, only twenty one miles to go in this get up.

While others were happy to say…

“Yes, we did it. We were part of the Dublin City Marathon in 2014”

Considering that the winners would streak through the distance in a little over two hours, the less athletic possibly suffered more as they were a lot longer on their feet and not quite as streamlined.

Five hours

In four hours time it will all be over.

 

Applause

Hey Well done you too!

It’s a challenge for everyone and for lots of different reasons.  All of them deserve a great round of applause.

 

Disclaimer: Obviously I am not a race reporter so if you want to give me feedback on any aspect of this report please get in touch or comment below. I have some pics from last year’s Dublin Marathon here and will add more from this year’s photoshoot in the next day or two.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Shoes

New Runners

New Runners

This is my first time to order runners online. Must say, I am very happy with the results.

My feet have given me huge trouble since I ran the marathon last October. Around the thirteen mile section, I had the sensation of them falling apart. I ripped off my socks at that point; it just seemed like my feet were screaming for more room. And hobbled home in pure agony. I just couldn`t pull out.

Oh, I am sure that compounded my feet problems. But that`s marathon for you. It becomes a form of madness that outweighs common sense.

For the next few weeks I could barely walk.

A visit to my podiatrist revealed the problem. As I understand it, my joints are extremely flexible so my ligaments and tendons struggle to keep the range of motion that my joints allow. And so, during the marathon the ligaments (and tendons? I am not sure.) became overstretched. Hence the pain. And hence, the long recovery.

I got orthotics at that time. They`re meant to keep my feet more rigid. But honestly, they made no difference to the pain back then. I just needed months and months to recover.

The good news is, I think, twelve months on, I`ve rounded that corner.

These new runners don`t have the same support as my older ones had. They`re what`s called a neutral fit.

I`d had a gait analysis done in a sports`shop and was told that I overpronate because I have flat feet. Yes gait analyses are  controversial enough: my podiatrist thinks they`re a load of ballyhoo. But she agrees that I do indeed have flat feet and my arch does need supporting.

But when I`d insert the orthotic into my supportive shoe, I felt like I was running on big beach cobbles. It`s only now, with the neutral shoe, that the orthotic finally works.

The new runners are Nike Dual Fusion. They`re light. They`ve a squared off toe box, which I love. I also love the colour. And adore the price. At €55 they`re less than half the price that I paid for my previous pairs of Brooks Adrenaline.

Prompted by a commenter on a previous post, I did investigate Nike and sweatshops. I am not fully reassured. But the other runners  which I saw in my two local sports shops are also made in China and Vietnam i.e Reebok, New Balance, and Adidas.

I`ve been running on these Nikes for the past two weeks. Fifteen-twenty miles per week. And finally, I can say, that my foot pain is gone. Gone! I don`t wake up, put my feet on the ground and start hobbling. I don`t even have that old back twinge anymore that scuppered by last half marathon attempt.

Okay, early days, early days. But I am optimistic. After a summer of trying to build my speed right back to the good old days when I could run nine minute miles, I hitting a little bit faster than that right now. Who knows? Maybe I can get even better.

The best bit is, that I get to keep the gifts that hypermobility bestows.  I can touch my toes without bending my knees. I can get my thumb to touch my inner arm. I can bend my fingers back to ninety degrees.

Yep, it`s debateable if any of these skills are of any use whatsoever.

But hey, its nice to have something to brag about.

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