I arrived in Barcelona on the Friday with Alison and Charlie, went to the Expo to get my number and spent the rest of the day and Saturday exploring the city sampling its good food and beer,and at night looking for the ghost of Hemmingway with my spoon,sugar cube and a bottle of absinthe. On race day I felt great as there was no pressure to chase a PB and I knew I could finish as I had managed a 19 miles a couple of weeks b4, it was all about how long it would take with very little training. So at the start after a fair bit stretching the old ankles and achilles I found myself between the sub 3 and sub 3:15, I just gave a shrug thinking I'll get a head start but they will eventually overtake me. Well 3:15 did eventually overtake me but not until the 35K mark,so now my target was sub 3:30 and I sort of guessed that I couldn't drop 15 mins when I still had them in my sights with 5K to go. The last couple of K was a struggle, the lack of training kicked in and I was toiling to lift my feet and I dropped 9 mins from the 3:15 pacers to cross the line bang on 3hrs 24mins.
I was well pleased with my time, even more than my Dublin marathon PB, which I will tell you about if I get enough likes, along with the wee neds setting fire to the bins outside our apartment after the race.
The Barca race was well organised with a really relaxed feeling to it with runners kids and family jumping over the barriers to run up the home straight together at the end, such a good sight and feeling.
I've already signed up for a nice flat Budapest marathon in October, get some proper unhindered training in and go for that magic PB. ;-)