Marathon Bloggers: Lorna, 8 weeks to go!

First time marathoner Lorna is racing a half  this weekend and she’s panicking! The emotion of completing a 10k had her in floods of tears, so we hope she’s packed the waterproof mascara.

Name: Lorna Mann

Age: 29

Marathon history: First marathon – London 2013

Goal: to finish in one piece!

Lorna outfits

What I learnt this week: I haven’t been that great company. For some reason this week I’ve annoyed myself with my training. I have no justification why I’m irked, but I am. When I have weeks like this I have to accept them for what they are, let them be, and stay focused.







I’ve officially reached panic. This weekend, on Sunday 3 March, I am running the Silverstone Half Marathon. And I’m anxious. Why? Who knows. I’ve covered that distance already, I’ve put in the training hours and I’ve raced before too. Nothing, in theory, is ‘new’ to me. Except it is.

I have exactly ONE race under my belt – The Old Deer Park, Richmond 10k, which I completed in November. I ran ok – I wouldn’t brag about my finishing time but I was proud to get through it. And that’s mainly because I was so over emotional it was amazing I could see through the floods of tears and make it around the course. I had NO IDEA that I’d react to running in an organised race that way. It was overwhelming to be a part of an event, it was overwhelming to me that people would actually come out and support you too. They clapped, I cried. Simple. If I’m like that for a 10k you can now appreciate why I’m apprehensive about next weekend. 13.1 miles of emotion. 13.1miles of needing to get around the course in one piece. 13.1miles of knowing that in seven weeks time I’ll have to do it all again, and then once more for the actual marathon.

After the Old Deer Park 10k

After the Old Deer Park 10k

I put a colossal amount of pressure on myself in training – ask James, he’ll back me up. I want to do well, I don’t want to let anyone down (in all honesty Lorna  – WHO CARES HOW YOU DO??) and when it comes to a race day this pressure seems to multiply. I’ve had my bag packed for two weeks, I’ve read the race day advice countless times, I’ve got my diet nailed, I know e-x-a-c-t-l-y where I have to be, what I have to do and when I have to do it. But I’m wracked with nerves.

In order to calm myself down in the lead up to Sunday I’ve written up 10 commandments of prepping for race day. They’re compiled of advice I’ve read, advice I’ve been given by other runners and advice screamed at me by my wonderful trainer James:


The 10 Race Prep Commandments according to Lorna Mann

1. I must not underestimate the importance of sleep. I need to rest this week. I need to get to bed at a decent hour and sleep properly.

  1. I need to stop worrying about coming last. Getting around the course is an achievement in itself and I have to be proud of that.
  1. If I am going to panic I just need to accept those feelings for what they are and not try to make sense of them.
  1. I must eat well. I must eat well. I must eat well. That means I must NOT give in to these annoying sugar cravings that seem to take over my every waking thought at the moment.
  1. I must not obsess and bore everyone around me with training chat.
  1. I must S-T-R-E-T-C-H every day. I hate doing it but it’s good for me.
  1. I must not buy any more kit. I have enough, and using the excuse ‘but it’s for race day’ isn’t convincing anyone.
  1. I must remember I still have a day job. And it isn’t anything to do with running
  1. I must not forget to say thank you to everyone who has got me to this point. I’m going to need them more than ever in the next seven weeks.
  1. I must enjoy each and every bit of the race. My ‘first time’ will never come around again, so rather than overthink it I need to smile my way through it. Because it will be awesome, no matter how much I think it won’t be.

Weekly training stats:
Miles/kms covered: 18.5km/11.49 miles

Lorna 8 weeks

Tuesday 19 Feb

60 mins leg training with Personal Trainer James McGill/Gymbox Covent Garden.

60 mins Yoga with the Nike Training Club at Westfield Stratford

Wednesday 20 Feb

Rest day. Unless you count dancing your socks off at a few parties around town one evening

 Thursday 21 Feb

4.5k run outside.
Friday 22Feb

60 mins upper body training with Personal Trainer James McGill/Gymbox Covent Garden
Saturday 23 Feb

Rest day. Couldn’t have felt lazier!
Sunday 24 Feb

10k ‘rest’ run. James’ running plan is made up of two long runs / one short run to give my legs a break. The aim is to beat my personal best with each short 10k though.

Monday 25 Feb

4k treadmill run.

60 mins yoga.


Running tracks of the week: Gold Dust, DJ Fresh. Tambourine, Eve. Doo Wop, Lauryn Hill

Read Lorna’s earlier training blogs

1 Comment

  • Jill says:

    Hi Lorna,

    I’m running Silverstone as well this weekend 🙂 Good luck and hope to see your fabulous running gear around the track!

    Jill x

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