I’d played over what would happen if my races were cancelled numerous times. So when they were, I was surprised to find my overarching feeling was relief.

After a couple of weeks of fearing the worst, finally at just gone 5PM, on Friday 13th of all days, the confirmation came. London Marathon 2020 was being postponed. Less than an hour later and I had the email to confirm the same for Manchester.



I had thought I might be angry, disappointed maybe even emotional. And perhaps those emotions will come in later days. However, having feared the worst, having it confirmed lifted a weight off my shoulders. I had talked in previous weeks updates about how I was starting to struggle to find the motivation. I think deep down my fear was another couple of weeks of that, and then the inevitable happen. I was also so grateful that both were confirmed as postponments. Yes I’ll have to train again, but knowing that I will do both these races in 2020 still was an immediate relief. And to be fair, 5am starts in the summer when it should be light and dry will probably be a ton easier than in the cold and wet.

The other relief was that this was the week I came down with an illness. I’m pretty sure it’s not COVID-19 and is more a common cold. However, having done the peak run of my training block last week, I was at my most fatigued so it was no surprise. The stress of missing a week training so close to race date was another thing I was pleased to not have to worry about.

I did manage one more run in this training block pre-cancellation. Tuesday morning saw me head out for a set of hill repeats again. As mentioned above, I was struggling for motivation so I was a little late out. This meant I quickly decided to drop down to 8 sets rather than the prescribed 10. After Sunday’s long run it was a bit tougher but was nice to be out again, seeing the same man who waits forever for his bus and trying to beat by distance in each 2 min set.

It’s weird to think now that was my final session. Since starting before Christmas I have covered just shy of 625km. As the crow flies from my house that would put me in the middle of France and within spitting distance of Frankfurt. Putting in those terms, you realise how far it is. It was mid-July last year before I’d done the equivalent distance travelled so far in 2020. In some ways it is scary to have to start over, but in others I am excited. I know I can do this training regime. Already my mind is wandering to a faster target time as well. Now it is time to recover, train where I can through what is bound to be a crazy few weeks here in the UK and around the world. Then come June, it’s time to get moving again as that empty slot on my medal hangar for a marathon WILL be filled this year!

Besides, another 6 months is plenty more time to raise money for The UK Sepsis Trust in memory of Pete. https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/michaelheywood

  • Monday – Rest Day
  • Tuesday – 8x 2min hill repeats 10.80km
  • Overall Total – 624.48km

By Mike

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