Seville Marathon result and report

Race Date: Sunday 18th February 2024

Running priorities is an interesting dilemma. I’m struggling balancing long distance ultra/fell running with road running. I kind of want to be good at both but they don’t seem to complement each other too well.

We decided to have a family holiday in Southern Spain in February half term and sort of manipulated the itinerary to fit in Seville marathon at the end of the trip. I made a (half hearted) attempt at training for it by powering to a few personal worsts in The Four Villages half marathon and Dewsbury 10k as well as a few pretty rubbish Parkrun showings. I did however enjoy The Trigger fell race in January which I conned myself into believing was good long distance training and great time on feet.

I PB’d in Seville 5 years ago when I got 3.09.54, making good for age by 6 seconds, only to be cruelly struck off the London marathon entry list due to good for age being over subscribed. I knew this would not be a repeat showing. We all know if you want to do well in a marathon, you have to put the correct training in. I wanted to do well in Seville but knew in my heart of hearts I was in for an ‘interesting’ few hours.

The weather is Seville in February is stunning and race day was nothing different. Full, clear, blue skies with temperatures due to rise. Donning the new style Striders’ vest, I wandered down to the start, feeling ever so slightly chilled. It was 7.45am. By the start time of 8.30am, I was comfortably in my (very hopeful) 3.15-3.30 starting pen. Off we went to some loud blaringely motivational rock music. I felt a tingle of excitement and a huge dose of dread/anticipation of what was to follow. The temperature was already rising

First half went reasonably well, passing halfway marker in just over 1.40. Not brilliant for me but I’d take it. However, the wheels started falling off around mile 15. Temperature was up to a balmy 22C. – not used to that kind of running weather. Quad tightened up and I’m just not used to running road marathon pace for such a long time. I was desperate for a good hill to walk up, like Yewbarrow or even Fairfield, so I could eat my Kendal mint cake. Nothing like that in Seville. Maybe I could stop to take a photo of the view. Seville marathon is not as pretty as you might think!  I was questioning my life choices. Why do these things seem like such a good idea when sitting in front of a laptop? The inner man on my shoulder was laughing at me saying, ‘haha, told you so. Don’t try, don’t get. You’re getting what you deserve. Stick to the fells in future’. My rational side was saying, ‘you’re not going for a time, just enjoy it. Walk a bit, run a bit, time is not important’. Inner man is back, ‘Look at all these runners passing you. Why are you walking? You’re time is going to be awful’. The conflict in my head was horrid but funny too.

It was lovely to see Jen and Ella at mile 18 and I told them my woes (good reason for a 30 seconds rest), then I battled on. The second half was a bit of a shit show but I got through it eventually. It was a nice feeling to finish the marathon but I never got that post race euphoria of, ‘can I sign up again’. I deservedly got my Personal Worst marathon time, in keeping with recent road races I’ve done. Will I ever do another road marathon – erm, yes. I’ve signed up for The Beer Marathon in Leige in 12th May. Seemed a good idea when sitting at the laptop and it will definitely be another Personal Worst. However, in future, I think I’ll listen to my inner man and stick to the fells – well, until the next family holiday abroad anyway. 🙂

The male winner was Deresa Geleta Ulfata of Ethiopia in 2.03.24. The female winner was Azmera Gebru Hagos also Ethiopian, in 2.22.10. Think I was first (and last) Strider

Striders result:

Pos Name Cat Time
5138 Nick Burns MV 50 3.42.04

Full Results: here


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