Thank you Edinburgh Marathon!

You gave me way more than I could’ve dreamed of before the start.

Not only have you helped me rediscover my passion for the challenge of running marathons, you reminded me of why I became a Personal Trainer and the values I learned from marathon running that my business is built on. 

You have also unleashed Steve Bonthrone 3.0!

Loving the challenge

One thing I love about the challenge of marathon running is that it comes down to what you do on the day. You can have a perfect training cycle and something happens on the day to knock you off your plan. You can also have a training cycle full of disruption but have a brilliant race and do better than you hoped.

My race didn’t go according to plan, thanks to a combination of an iron deficiency, the heat and a loss of mental toughness.

I’ve had an iron deficiency since last summer and when it comes on, it feels like I’m running through treacle and I’ve no energy. It didn’t bother me too much throughout training but I began to feel it in the second half of the race and felt the need to stop and walk between 15 and 17 miles then a few more times from 22 miles onwards. The rest of the run felt pretty good.

Another factor I became aware of was the loss of mental toughness from not racing regularly for a while. You need some mental toughness when running marathons, especially from mile 20, to keep pushing on when you feel like you want to stop. While the iron deficiency played a big part, there were certainly times where I could’ve kept on going.

I’m a great believer in learning by doing and so I’ve learned a few valuable lessons from this race that I can take forward.

Sometimes you need to go through all this in order to learn so you can do better next time.

Edinburgh Marathon - Steve Bonthrone

A well earned cider at the finish!

Rediscovering my why

25 years ago, I ran the London Marathon and it inspired me to become a Personal Trainer and help others do amazing things they didn’t think were possible for them.

I’ve felt lost for the last few years, not knowing where I’m going and have watched countless videos looking for inspiration and trying to find my purpose again.

Turns out, all I needed to do was run a marathon!

When I started training for Edinburgh from the first Monday in January, I instantly reconnected with the person I remember being and the values that I built my business on! My last in person marathon was 2019 and while I ran another one in 2020, it was nothing like this.

From the first marathon I ran in 1998, I continued to run Spring marathons and always started my training on the first Monday in January. It was significant because I knew I could enjoy myself over Christmas and New Year knowing that as soon as the first Monday arrived, training became my focus and nothing else mattered.

I never realised how much of an impact that had on me until the beginning of this year. Within days of starting training, it was like winding the clock back 20 years, returning to what I knew, the values that defined me and the confusion of the last few years swept away in an instant.

To read more about those values, click here.

Introducing Steve Bonthrone 3.0

Since Sunday, I’ve felt like a different person. A lot of the values I had, I recognise I suppressed them in order to be someone I’m not.

As my Mum always said, “why try to fit in when you were born to stand out?”

Since turning 50 in 2020, I’ve had a great desire to go do things that I haven’t done before and prove that age doesn’t have to stop you from doing all the things you’d love to do. Signing up to Edinburgh and aiming for the qualifying standard for a Good For Age place in the London Marathon was part of all that.

I’m thinking now that NOT achieving my goal has been much more valuable to me than achieving it. I’m not sure I would’ve learned a lot of the lessons and feel as energised as I do now had I got that time. Now I know what I know, I’m more determined to come back next year and hit that target!

What does Steve Bonthrone 3.0 look like? If you haven’t guessed already, I now have the same amount of energy and passion to help others do what they used to think was impossible for them as I’ve always had.

There’s an extra layer to it now. I want to help more people over 50 do amazing things and continue to do them for years to come. You don’t have to be over 50 though to start, I believe the process can start from 45 upwards.

Don’t settle for getting fit or losing weight. Aim higher, go after the things you’ve always wanted to do, have fun doing it and get fit and lose weight naturally along the way.

Thank you Edinburgh Marathon, you’ve given me my life back! See you next year!