Yorkshire Marathon – 15 October 2023

by Gayle Askwith

Having caught the marathon bug last year, I jumped at the chance of running York because it was sold to me as flat. Those that know me, know that I never research the route when I enter these things. I reply on pure hearsay and rumour about what the course is like. Keeps me on my toes!

I stayed in York overnight with my friend ahead of the marathon, sticking to tried and tested pre-race rituals including but not limited to:
• short leg stretch
• foam roll
• pack and unpack running bag a million times
• panic I’d forgotten something then find item and repeat
• pizza and small glass of red wine (professionals swear by it so I’ve heard, or maybe I made that up – who knows!)
The morning of the run was chilly and bright – perfect. We made our way to the start line using the Park and Ride option. The organisation was fantastic, the marshals and volunteers lovely. The GNR and Durham runs could learn something here!

The start came around quickly, and we were off! Running through York City was a bit congested but then the route took us through outlying villages and the runners thinned out. Some friends were moving around the course to cheer us on, and it was really uplifting to see them at various points. I was in the zone and paced pretty well up to around mile 16 when a long gradual uphill made the wheels fall off a little. Still, with lots of motivational support messages and a bit of mental strength I ploughed on, managing to smile on most of the photo opportunities.

Mile 20. I started really struggling but knew I was on to hit my sub 4.30 target. I dug deep and brought out the big guns – the music of the New Monkey!

With the Makina tunes blasting in my ears, amazing support messages, and channelling my inner Hardest Geezer I got it done. I ran across the finish line absolutely beaming, knowing I’d hit my sub 4.30 marathon and PB by 30 minutes.

Huge thank you to the Club and all its members who have been so important to my running this year. 😊

Gayle A