The Porky Personal Trainer (English Half Marathon)

So at the end of my regular running season in June and that pissed off with running that I didn’t even make the start line for my final race of the season (Port Sunlight 10k) I had a brainwave and signed me and Mrs Fay up for The English Half Marathon in September which is based in Warrington. Normally over the summer and especially during a World Cup year the exercise winds down and the burgers and booze ramps up. The idea was that having a decent distance race in September would mean I have to keep up some kind of running over the summer months for a change. it was a mighty fine idea on paper. Well that was until the warmest summer for about 25 years rocked up. Mrs Fay wasn’t too impressed either but with her already completed a half marathon with Faymondo Fitness Training AKA The Porky Personal Trainer we were going to do this. So here is the story of the challenge. Will it all end in glory or would we be one of the first “no contest” divorces that are going to be brought in ?

So as mentioned the summer was a hot one. There is always an excuse not to go out for a run and heat is right up there but we plodded on early summer and got some 6 mile runs in. Sadly I never achieved the beach body in time for our holiday in Cyprus in mid August. I did actually think of going to the gym in the complex during our holiday for a few runs but the lure of a Keo beer in the swim up bar was just too much temptation. So with the holiday out of the way it was time for the last 4 week push post holiday to get us to the start line for the race. I had managed a plodding half marathon dummy run before I went away so I knew I was in a decent place for the final push. I was lucky coming off the back of my running season which included two full marathons (Get me eh !! ) Mrs Fay however had the hardest ladder to climb coming from a  zero base. Luckily the weather in August was more traditional and I dragged Mrs Fay out for training runs often with a scowl on her face and quite a few moans around the routes anything from “I don’t like this road” to “I don’t like running on grass” and ” No stupid routes tonight !” As an experienced fat bastard runner personal trainer I let all the flack bounce off me as previous clients of mine will tell you I get results. As the runs got longer the complaints increased and I used to just put myself in a bubble and think “Imagine a world where there are no contest divorces”

With Mrs Fay putting her longest training run off and off it came to d-day last Friday and she set out on her own to do the 10 miles without me ( I wonder if that was a tactic ? ) she managed to do it but it was hard work at the end. The week leading to race day was surrounded with self doubt and excuse after excuse from Mrs Fay. Distance running is just as much mental as physical and she was met with a “We can do this” from me as I knew that she had reluctantly put in the training needed but it was done and race day would be a good day. So Mrs Fay headed to bed early for a Saturday night as the no sex before a major race rule was invoked. Along side the twice a year rule 1.04 Christmas and Birthdays (I am 45 on Tuesday !! )

So race day came along and up at 7.15 on a Sunday morning for a drive to Warrington and we got out of the car to rain. Mrs Fay was still full of nagging doubts. My main worry was should I wear my waterproof coat. We got to the start line for plenty of time and the normal pre race toilet break was needed. So 9am came and we were soon off and running. Mrs Fay this was it. Lets do this.

After the usual busy start the athletes soon spread out and you could get into your running pattern. A sneaky up hill onto and over a bridge that went over a canal and it transpired that the first 7 miles was sneakily up hill. Nothing major but some long stretches. We were going to sit behind the 2 hours 30 pacer with Mrs Fay thinking she needed to be nearer the 2 hours 45 one but things were going well despite the incline and we moved ahead of the 2:30 pacer. When the hills got on the more steep side of things I would go slightly ahead as my long legs couldn’t physically go any slower and I would then slow down or come back a bit to get back with Mrs Fay. After about 3 miles there was a left for the half marathon runners and a right for the 10k runners. Sadly we had to go left. 7 miles and over half way and after chatting to somebody the course was downhill apart from the small climb over the bridge again and he was correct. Mrs Fay was flying and well on course to smash 02:30. Funny enough she was enjoying the run and very happy with how it was going and not a moan all around the first 10 miles. Heading back into Warrington city centre you could hear the cheers from the end but there were still two miles to eek out. With a surprise turn into The Warrington Wolves stadium running around the pitch and under a stand all that was left was a small incline up into town and then down the other side and along to the finish which were the splendid gates to a park in Warrington. Two of our kids and the in laws had spotted us about 2.5 miles out and then on the home stretch Mrs Fay kicked for home in Ethiopian style and as ever with somebody I help run around I always let them have the victory over me and that was that it was all done in a time of bang on 2 hours 27 mins.

A post race sit down was needed for Mrs Fay and I sneaked off for a wee in some local bogs which has UV light to prevent smackheads but with many male runners in bright orange and lime tops it looked more like a post race rave as the tops and coats glowed under the UV light. Proudly home with our medals Mrs Fay had a bath and I walked the dogs as once that was done all I had planned was a post race snooze followed by sport and a bevy.

After 13.1 miles of sheer hell your gonna get thirsty. This is Desperados. It gets to your thirst fast. Its not Isotonic but its tasty and at 5.9% it gets you pissed. Take sport seriously.

So there we have it. A massive well done to Mrs Fay you literally smashed it and I hope you enjoy your well deserved wine. It didn’t end in divorce but glory. Remember folks The Porky Personal trainer guarantees results. Next on the hit list is an old friend Helen who has just started running and says I can never do a half marathon. Music to my ears.


Fay x x x x x x x x x x

Edit I was papped by The Warrington Guardian


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