Just over a week ago, I crossed the line at the Manchester Marathon. I was exhausted but delighted, having knocked over 40 minutes off my previous personal best and raised almost £700 for the Alzheimer’s Society. 

It was a wonderful charity to support, but I must confess that my main motivation was embarrassment. I’ve run countless 10ks and half marathons, but until last week I only had one full marathon under my belt (the Bristol + Bath Marathon back in 2005) and it wasn’t a good one.

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