Edinburgh Marathon 2017
Jim Doughty is an athlete ambassador for Sundried. He is an Ironman Triathlete as well as an ultra runner, so a marathon is a walk in the park for him! He talks us through his experience at the Edinburgh Marathon, his first marathon run that hasn't been a part of a triathlon race.
"So it's 6am and time to have breakfast before the drive to Edinburgh; I have some porridge and a banana washed down with my favourite coffee. We set off in plenty of time to park and soak up the atmosphere at the start of the race, I take along my pre-race fluids and energy tablets dissolved in ice cold water, which I continually sip while I'm waiting to start. I spend 20 minutes warming up with some stretching, then the loudspeakers start the 10-second countdown, and I'm away.
The route starts in the centre of Edinburgh and works its way around some of the landmarks of the city before heading out towards Musselburgh and past the racecourse.
The sun is shining and the temperature is close to 20 degrees but the miles are passing by as expected and I feel good. I complete the first 10km in around 50 minutes and pass a friend who started 10 minutes before me. We run together for a few minutes chatting before I say my goodbyes and push on along the seafront at the far end of Leith.
I run past the finish line, I won't see it again for another 22km so try not to think too hard about it and get lost in my music. The route is flat and fairly uneventful until you reach the turnaround point where it takes your through a country estate near Prestonpans onto rough ground for a couple of kilometres before rejoining the road back.
At this point you see all the other runners coming towards you as you run the last 12km back to the finish line. I see my friend again and realise I'm about 10km in front of him. I run towards the middle of the road and high-five him which gives me a much-needed boost as I realise I'm running at a fairly consistent pace and I press on.
I drift into a world of my own for a few kilometres and when I come back down to earth I only have 5km to go. I dig deep and increase my tempo, I remove my earphones so I can really enjoy the atmosphere of all the supporters lining the road and shouting my name, I suddenly realise I really am looking forward to seeing my wife daughters at the finish line.
I cross the line in a time of 4:27:02 and am over the moon with my time, my family are waiting and are all smiles, and I missed my goal by 7 minutes but as this was my first standalone marathon it's fine.
I know that next time I will be faster so am looking forward to Wales in July when I complete the Welsh marathon as part of the Long Course Weekend Iron Distance Triathlon.
My friend finished in a time of 6:16:32 and is a seasoned marathon runner; it doesn't get any better than that for me."