What’s the costs of running the World Marathon Majors ( WMM ) ?

Since I started this journey, loads of people keep asking me how much is it exactly cost to run the races. But lets start with the beginning. If you new to running and have no idea about the majors, let me explain it to you briefly.

What is the Abbot World Marathon Majors?

The Abbott World Marathon Majors is a series consisting of six of the largest and most renowned marathons in the world. The races take place in Tokyo, Boston, London, Berlin, Chicago and New York City.

So simple is that, the 6 biggest marathons all around the world, 3 in North America, 2 in Europe and 1 in Asia.

When you complete all 6 races, your name will go onto the Abbot’s Wall Of Fame, and you’ll be rewarded with a special 6 star medal. If you lucky you can run all 6 races in a calendar year, or run them in a much slower pace. At this moment there is no time limit to complete them . I gave myself a 3 year time limit, which means 2 in every year.

London – New York = 2017

Berlin – Chicago = 2018

Tokyo – Boston = 2019


Now back to the most important and serious part, finances.

How much does it really cost to run the races?

There are a few options, but I start with the cheapest options, which is when you are successfully gained entry via the lottery  / fast runner systems. Then after that I’ll explain how did I managed to get my entries.

  1.  Cheapest option – via 5 lottery drawing + 1 qualification

For 5 races out of the 6, you can get in via lottery drawing ( Tokyo, London, Berlin, Chicago, New York ) and for Boston you’ll need to run fast. You will need to get a qualifying time.

Let me get this straight, there’s really no cheap option. Yes, the race entries are not too bad, but you still going to need to travel. If you are from the US you can travel to the US races much cheaper, then someone from Europe ( like me ). But you still need accommodation, spending money, new running gear ect.

All 6 races have charity entries and Tour operator entries, but in this part I only focusing on the cheapest option, which is the Lottery or the Fast runner entries.

Tokyo Marathon:

Date: 1st Sunday of March

Entry fee if successful in the lottery:

Japan residents – 10,800 Yen  ( £73 )

Overseas residents – 12,800 Yen ( £86 )

The application period is usually in August, and the drawing takes place in Mid September.

Tokyo also has a scheme called ” RUN as ONE ” which is their fast runner scheme, but they only have 300 places for this. Also for this only residents outside of Japan can apply.

  • Men’s Full Marathon 2:21:01 〜 2:45:00
  • Women’s Full Marathon 2:52:01 〜 3:30:00

Tour operator: I haven’t found a list on their website unfortunately. The only 2 official operators I’m aware of : 2:09 events and Sport tours international

Charity application : 4000 guaranteed spots on the first come first get in basis. Have to pay the fundraising fee ahead. https://www.marathon.tokyo/en/charity/

London Marathon:

Date : usually the 3rd Sunday of April

Entry fee if successful in the lottery:

UK residents – £39 ( or £35 if you are a member of a UK-affiliated running club )

Overseas residents – £80

The application period is in May, and its usually only for 5 days, and the drawing takes place in October.

Also for London you can get in if you are part of a UK running club, they get a few places every year. The other option to get in via the Championship Entry, which means you’ll need to get a qualifying time. These 2 option are only open for UK residents thou.

Tour operators : Only for residents outside if the UK https://www.virginmoneylondonmarathon.com/en-gb/how-to-enter/overseas-entry/

Charity application : https://www.virginmoneylondonmarathon.com/en-gb/charity/run-charity/listings/UK/

Berlin Marathon:

Date: usually the 3rd Sunday of September

Entry fee if successful in the lottery:

Any residents – €108  ( £95 )

The application period last year was in Mid September – Beginning of October, and the drawing takes place in the end of November – beginning of December.

Also for this race small teams ( 2-3 people ) can enter as well, they have the same application window and the price is the same. Not too sure if their chances are better than the single participants.

Berlin also have a Fast runners scheme. Everyone who finished an AIMS-certified marathon in the last two years  under a specified time and can prove it with a list of results or race certificate qualifies to receive a starting spot once we have verified the submitted information. They will need to pay the same entry fee of €108.

Tour operators : http://www.bmw-berlin-marathon.com/en/plan-your-race/tour-operators/

Charity application : http://www.bmw-berlin-marathon.com/en/plan-your-race/charity.html

Chicago Marathon:

Date: usually the 1st Sunday of October

Entry fee if successful in the lottery / guaranteed entry:

  • U.S. residents (those who live in one of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico or other U.S. territories): $195 (USD) ( £140 )
  • Non-U.S. residents: $220 (USD) ( £157 )

The application period last year was in end of October – end of November., and the drawing took place on the 12th of December.

Chicago also have a Guaranteed entry option:

  • Time qualifier: Runners who have met the event’s age graded qualifying standards or qualify for the event’s American Development Program.
  • Legacy finisher: Runners who have completed the Chicago Marathon five or more times within the last 10 years.
  • 2017 Cancelled entry: Runners who cancelled their 2017 entry through the event deferment/cancellation policy.
  • Bank of America Shamrock Shuffle: Runners who have completed the Bank of America Shamrock Shuffle 8K four or more times since 2000 and have signed up for the 2018 Shamrock Shuffle.

Tour operators : https://www.chicagomarathon.com/charity-community/international-tour-group-program/

Charity application : https://www.chicagomarathon.com/charity-community/charity-program/

New York Marathon:

Date: usually the 1st Sunday of November

Entry fee if successful in the lottery / guaranteed entry:

  • U.S. residents (those who live in the 50 United States, and the District of Columbia)
    • NYRR members: US $255 ( £182 )
    • Non-members: US $295 ( £211 )
  • Non-U.S. residents: US $358 ( £256 )

The application period  was from the 15 January –  15 February , and the drawing took place on the 28th of February.

New York also have a few guaranteed entry options:

  • Entrants Through the 9+1 or 9+$1K Program
  • Entrants Who Officially Cancelled Their Entry to the next TCS New York City Marathon
  • Runners Who Have Completed 15 New York City Marathons
  • Time Qualifiers

Tour operator : https://www.tcsnycmarathon.org/plan-your-race/international-travel-partners

Charity application : https://www.tcsnycmarathon.org/plan-your-race/run-for-charity

Boston Marathon: 

Date: always on Patriots day

As I said at the beginning, this race is totally different from the other 5.

There is no lottery for this race, you’ll need to get a qualifying time to be able to get into the race, of course if you want the cheapest option.

Entry fee via time qualification:

U.S. residents – $185.00 (USD) ( £132 )

International residents – $250.00 (USD)  ( £180 )

Boston Marathon has a “rolling admission” schedule, beginning with the fastest qualifiers. Runners will be seeded based on qualifying time. The date you are allowed to register will correspond with the amount of time by which you’ve beat your qualifying standard. For more info click HERE, this is the official site and explains it really well.

Tour operators : Since B.A.A. updated their website they took off the official tour operator list. I saved it in a PDF so happy to email it to anyone 🙂 Also only non USA / Canadian residents can apply via this route.

Charity application : https://www.baa.org/races/boston-marathon/charity-program

   2. How did I got into the races? 

Because I’m not a fast runner and I havent had any luck with the lotteries I’ve already paid a lot. Most of these prices just for the entry, doesn’t include airfare or hotels. The only good thing is that luckily i get great price on train fares , so mostly that’s free.

If you light-hearted and don’t want to get a shock do not read any further lol

London Marathon 2017:

Charity entry –  the cheapest I’ve found was with a charity called MACS and they have requested to raise £1250. I’ve raised about £500 and the rest was paid out from my pocket.

New York Marathon 2017:

Official tour operator – 2:09 events UK

Their flights + entry package cost me £1200

Berlin Marathon 2018:

Charity entry– The cheapest I’ve found was with Prostate cancer UK and they asked me to raise £500. Because i feel bad asking money from friends and family I’ve paid this off as well. I don’t feel that others should pay for my races, even though all the money going to charities.

Chicago Marathon 2018:

Charity entry – it’s with a Chicago based charity called Paws Chicago, and they asked me to raise $1000 ( £717 ). It’s the same as Berlin, because I feel bad asking money from friends and family I’ve paid this off as well. I don’t feel that others should pay for my races, even though all the money going to charities.

Tokyo Marathon 2019:

** Update ** I’ve got into Tokyo via the charity option. Link here

Charity entry – But because the registration hasn’t opened for 2019 I can’t say I’ve got a guaranteed place. But when they open it up in July I’ll apply for a place. Their charity called ” Run with Heart ” and they have 4000 spots, it’s a first come first get registration. The money need to be paid is 100 000 Yen ( £680 ).

Boston Marathon 2019: 

** Update ** I’ve got into Boston via 2:09 events registration. Link here.

Official tour operator – 2:09 events UK or Sport Tours International.

Their prices will include : flight  + entry + hotel for 4 nights

Because none of them started their registration process I can’t say what their fees will be for 2019, but 2:09 events prices for 2018 were:

Screen Shot 2018-03-17 at 15.41.58

The final balance is due 10 weeks before travel.

So that’s all, it’s definitely expensive but my motto is ” We only live once ” so at the end it’s all worth it 🙂 And to be honest I’m good with savings , once I set my mind into something I save up for it.

When I got my entry confirmation for Tokyo & Boston I’ll update this post.

Since I’ve wrote this post I managed to get into Tokyo and also to Boston as well. Click on the links to read more about them.

If any of you have any question about any of the races please do not hesitate to contact with me.




Struggle?! Why I’m so unlucky?

I haven’t been active here for a really long time, and I feel really bad about it. But the last few weeks were horrible.

It’s all started after I completed the 10k race in Greenwich park.  During the race my left foot started to hurt, it felt like a strange burning numbing feeling. It’s really hard to explain. First I thought that I run too hard or haven’t trained enough for it. the next morning I could not manage to stood on my left foot, I never felt this kind of pain in my life before. My heel was incredibly sore but the rest of my sole was hurting as well. Slowly managed to get to work but I was worrying about it a lot. After a few hours the pain was gone , like nothing happened before.

When I got back from work and sat down a bit, and stood up the pain was back. I had no clue what this could be.

A few days later I went to see medical advice because I started to realise this is definitely not normal. Well it turns out it’s a really common but awful injury called Plantar Fasciitis.

What exactly is this?

Plantar fasciitis (PLAN-tur fas-e-I-tis) is one of the most common causes of heel pain. It involves inflammation of a thick band of tissue that runs across the bottom of your foot and connects your heel bone to your toes (plantar fascia).

Plantar fasciitis commonly causes stabbing pain that usually occurs with your first steps in the morning. As you get up and move more, the pain normally decreases, but it might return after long periods of standing or after rising from sitting.


Plantar fasciitis is more common in runners. In addition, people who are overweight and those who wear shoes with inadequate support have an increased risk of plantar fasciitis.



Two words:  It Sucks !!!!

There’s not much I could do about this, other than resting and stretching it gently. I’ve spoken with many other runners and some of them been out of running 6-10 months because the pain is unbearable.

I’ve got one of these special night casts, which should gently my ligament overnight so I wouldn’t be in as much pain in the morning.



It seems to work, because I don’t have as much pain in the mornings, but running is still a struggle. So most days I just fast walk :/ I thought if i keep resting it gets better, so I haven’t done any cycling or running since the end of january. Attempted a half marathon on the 4th of march and I was perfectly fine till about mile 6-7 after that the pain was back and had to walk the remaining miles. Which resulted to my slowest ever half marathon 😦

At this moment I have no idea what’s going to happen with my Ironman race in July. I could defer it for a year, but I really wanted to do it before I turn 30 next February.

Some days if I walk more at work than usual then the next day the pain is back and I hardly can walk. So even when I’m not running the pain is coming back.

I do feel really unlucky because every time I’m training for something I’ll get injured. Last year torn my ankle ligament before the London marathon. During New York I’ve dislocated my knee and now I have this.

I have so much stuff to do this year, Ironman, Berlin and Chicago. I paid in loads and loads of money, which I can’t get back. The only one I can defer is the Ironman. The marathons are charity places, so can’t defer.

Life sucks sometimes.

I need to get better, I need to feel well to continue my training. I love my training, it refreshes me and let me relax after a hard day at work. Now I totally incapable to do anything other than walk.

I do hope that a few more weeks of resting and I’d be okay with my training. How could I even attempt an Ironman without training for the bike and run? It’s so sad 😦




Greenwich Park 10k

To keep myself on track with my trainings I’ve decided to run at least 1 race in a month.

I’ve run a few races organised by Runthroughuk and I really enjoyed them. Really well organised races, chip timing, medal, banana , flapjacks and free race photos. Who needs more than this?

I headed to London early Saturday morning, because the races started at 10am. My train arrived to Waterloo well on time, then took the underground to get to Greenwich park.

Unfortunately the weather was horrible, and rained all day long.

The course was a 3 lap course in the beautiful Greenwich park. I don’t really like lap races, but 3 laps are not as bad. But at the end of each laps there was a massive hill.


I wasn’t too sure what to expect , because my last race was in New York, but I tried to do my best. I’ve decided to run as much as I can, then walk/run up that massive hill.

With that plan in mind my first 3km was well under 7mins/km, which I was pleased with it.  Unfortunately because the weather was bad we didn’t have much crowed support but the marshalls were awesome.

After the first hill climb I realised that I do need to do much more hill training. There were loads of runners who easily run up the whole hill.

Screen Shot 2018-01-25 at 17.33.26

To be honest I’m pleased with my time, I’ve crossed the finish line in 1hr 14mins 7secs. Which is a bit better than my normal flat 10k time. My last 10k race was in Reading and I’ve finished that in 1hr 21mins.

Massive surprise. I’m starting to believe that cycling and swimming help with my cardio and it makes my running faster.

What’s your thoughts?

Screen Shot 2018-01-25 at 17.32.47

Finished the race with an awesome 7:26mins/km, and I’m really happy with that. There’s still place to improve and get better but slowly I’m getting there.



Happy Finish


First Medal of the year



6 months to go – IM UK

Race day is now less than 6 months away, its scary to think that this time I’ll be in the water and swimming towards to the finish line of Bolton.


But 6 months is a long way away as well. Loads of training and also some planning ahead of me. When the weather gets better and I’ll do longer on the bike I will have to start practicing my fueling strategy. I’m really comfortable with my running fuelling, so just need to concentrate for the cycling part.

In the next couple of months I’ll do some blog posts about the different race locations, pre and post race activities etc.

Also ever sunday after i finished my last training session of the week I will publish my weekly training summary. It will be a good reflection to see where did I struggle, what did I smash and just simply to compare my results.

I’d love to have it in writing how much I achieved and got better in the next 6 months.

To have that I have to write down where I started.


I’ll be honest, I’ve started swimming on November. Before that probably I’ve done 2-3 swimming sessions in a whole year. As of today I only feel comfortable to swim in breaststroke. I’ve tried to do front crawl but it feels like I’m drowning and all the water keeps going into my nose :/

My average swimming pace is : 3:42mins / 100 metres 

If the race would have been today I’d swam the 3800 metres in 2hrs 20mins 36 seconds. 

Which is pretty bad because the swim cut off is : 2 hours 20 minutes + a further 10 minutes from the swim cut off to start the bike

As you can see I need to get much much faster. I just looked through my Garmin swimming records and can see the fastest 100m I swam was 3:09 mins, if I’d be able to keep that sweep up I’d finish it in 1hr 59mins 42secs.

But my plan is to get as fast as 2:45mins / 100m in the swimming pool, that is 1:44:30. Because I managed to keep that pace up then in open water I’ll have some spare time and wont need to rush as much. As you can see I’ll definitely need to get faster and shave off almost a whole minute from my swimming times. But I still have almost 6 months to achieve this step.


I used to cycle in my mountain bike and done a few casual races back in Hungary, but nothing as competitive as an Ironman. I’ve got my road bike in the beginning of december and since then we are best friends lol.

the Ironman cycling distance is 180km, which is a really long way and I’ve done a bit of a research and it turns out Bolton is really really Hilly course.

My average cycling speed is : 20.4km / hour

If the race would have been today I’d cycle the 180 km in 8hrs 49mins 24 seconds. 

Its far from fast and I also need to remember that the cut off for the Bike: 10 hours 30 minutes (after you cross the swim start timing mat) + a further 10 minutes from the bike cut off to start the run

Also will need to keep in mind that the cycling route will have internal cut off points as well. When Ironman releases that date I’ll memories it back and forth so when I’m out there I will know which km mark belongs to what cut off times.

My plan is of course to get faster and average something like between  23km/hrs and 25km/hrs. With an average 23km/hrs I’d finish the cycling part in 7hrs 49mins 33secs, and if I get even faster to 25km/hrs then I’d finish it in 7hrs 12mins.

I do beleive I can get as fast as I need to be, and also currently with my slowest speed I’m only on my turbo trainer. So outside will be much better. I hope.


To be honest this is the part I’m not worried of at all. I know I can run a marathon, I mean I’ve run London and New York already. The only difference will be is that I’ll run the marathon after the swimming and cycling.

It’s hard to calculate what could be my running speed, because there’s absolutely no point me writing down my 5k speed because that won’t last for 42km.

Lets see what was my average pace for the NY marathon.

I’ve averaged 9:09mins/km in New York for 42km.

If the race would have been today I’d run the 42km in 6hrs 26mins 07 seconds. 

With 6 months constant training I’ll try to get faster with my running so I’ll have more spare time in Bolton.

I’d love to average an 8:30mins/km so I’d finish the run part in 5hrs 58mins.

The cut off for the whole race is: 17 hours (after you cross the swim start timing mat)

Screen Shot 2018-01-16 at 15.08.10

Would FAIL with my current speed


In 6 months time I hope I’ll be able to achieve the below paces and complete my first IM race. The most I need to improve is my swimming  then the cycling part. 180km is a really long way and a long time to sit on a bike.

Screen Shot 2018-01-16 at 15.09.00

6 months time?

I’ve used this website to calculate my total Ironman finishing times: http://www.triathloncalculators.com/

As you can see I’m far from ready, I’m far from perfect but I’m the one who never gives up. 6 months bloody hard work is ahead of me to be able to achieve my planned paces. But when I’ll cross the finish line in Bolton town centre at almost midnight I’ll be happy and will know that all the sacrifice worth it.




Hotel & Flights for Chicago

A few weeks ago when I signed up for the upcoming Chicago Marathon with Team Paws I wasn’t too sure what kind of hotel to book.

First of all I’ve tried to book one as close as to the start as possible. But than it turns out they are really expensive, even if I booked them on Booking.com 😦

So after a bit of disappointment I’ve checked Chicago’s public transportation system and realised its pretty good. When I run New York in november I had to travel almost 25 mins to get to the Staten Island ferry station so I think I can travel around them same for Chicago.

The race is starting from Grant Park, so I decided to look for hotels within a 6 mile radius, according to google its only a 10 minutes car/taxi journey or if I would take any of the trains / subways it’s still only a 25 mins journey. Not bad at all 🙂


So after searching on booking.com for a few days I managed to find a not  too expensive, but still a good-looking hotel within my travelling range.

It’s called Chicago Lake Shore Hotel and it has 3 stars and it’s only 5.5 miles from the start area. Just above the University of Chicago.  I can easily hop on to the Red tube line and that gets me to the start in 24 minutes.


Have to say I’m pretty chuffed with the hotel. It turns out it has an outdoor pool as well, I mean I’m not too sure how hot the weather will be in October but I could give swimming a go.

We staying in the hotel from the 4th till the 8th of October and it’s only costs us £381         ( $522) and this already includes all taxes and extra fees, and we only pay it when we get there. This is another reason i love booking.com 🙂

Few days ago we also managed to book our flights. Searching for flights I used a website called ” skyscanner.com ” . If you haven’t heard from it, it compares all different airlines and ticket selling sites prices and you are able to pick whichever you prefer.

On our days the cheapest airline turned out to be Norwegian, but after reading through their terms and conditions about check in, food on the plane, extra luggage etc. I decided not to use them. too much extra fees to pay.

Surprisingly the second cheapest airliner turned out to be British Airways. With BA you get everything in the price. We choose to travel on their Economy class ( World Traveller ).   Free food and drink on the plane, 1 free check in luggage and carry on luggage and also online check in etc.  The flights cost us exactly £900. I don’t think its a bad price for BA.

As you can see on the photos above, we are leaving from Heathrow on the 4th at 08:40am, and getting to Chicago at 11:20am. It’s a british airways flight, but will be operated as an American Airlines flight, but we getting the same benefits. If my research is correct the plane will be a Boeing 787-8 (twin jet) plane.

On the way home we are leaving chicago at 19:25 and will get to London the next morning at 09:05. I’ve chosen the later flight in the evening, so will have plenty of time to do some last-minute shopping in the morning. This flight also will be operated as American Airlines and the plane will be the same Boeing 787-8.


The only other thing to need to buy is the Chicago sightseeing passes, but there’s no rush with them at all.

With BA we only can check in 24hours before the flight, so still a bit far away.

Just check out my ESTA and it turns out they are valid for 2 year, so I don’t need to renew it luckily . Its valid till May 2019, so hopefully I can use it for my Boston Marathon as well in 2019.




House moving, Ironman training and 2018

First of all Happy New Year all of you 🙂

So much has happened in the last couple of weeks. A month ago we successfully bought our house and moved into it. That’s the main reason I wasn’t blogging at all. We still don’t have the computer room set up, need to buy a computer desk, chair and storage cupboards so currently sitting on the ground but typing away haha.



My World Marathon Medals and frames hanging nicely in my new workout room. 

I really wanted to move to happen quickly because my Ironman Bolton Training was starting on the 18th of december so us moving on the 8th was a great timing.

As soon as we moved in I started to buy all of my cycling equipments. We didn’t have much space in the flat so I am really pleased with the space in the house.

I got myself a new road bike, so no more mountain biking. Also because the weather is not too good I decided to purchase a turbo trainer as well. So I can sweat inside but still getting the mileage in.


My new toys 🙂 All ready for the next 30 weeks training.

I absolutely loving my new bike. Its comfortable and fits well and the colours are bright.

Didn’t really have any idea what kind of “turbo trainer” to purchase , so after looking through different ones on the internet I decided its better to spend a bit more money on it and buy a “smart” one. It means I am able to connect it with my phone and comes with all different kind of sensors ( speed, cadence etc ). Luckily I found one on sale in my local Halfords store so it only cost me £120  because it was on sale. The bike was a fair few hundreds, but better not to mention the price. I’ll spend house on it so needed to be well fit and good bike.

Currently I’m in my week 4 of my training, have to say some days are harder than others. Finding really hard and boring to sit on the bike and cycle for hours. Currently the longest I was on it was 1hr 45mins. But after moving my set up to the living room I can watch Netflix on the tv so it’s not as bad anymore. But I can’t wait for the cycling outside part.

Signed up for the local swimming pool as well. It’s just much easier to get there straight after work or early mornings. Andover only has a temporary 4 lane swimming pool but its 25m long, so perfect length. Because I going swimming in non peak hours it’s never been busy yet. I think the most I’ve seen was 6 people and me.

Running around Andover is great, I loving the new scenery and the different running routes. We live not too far from the ponds, so usually when I have my brick sessions I run around the pond 2-3-4 times and that’s it.



I also treated my self with a new workout watch. I had no problems with my Tomtom Runner 3 at all, but the battery life wouldn’t have been long enough to last an Ironman. Always wanted to get a Garmin, so opted to buy the Fenix 5.  Loads of people recommended it, and the battery life will last much more than the 17hrs I’ll need it for.




My cycling is not the fastest yet, currently I’m around 20.5km/hr so will need to speed up. But I still have loads of months to get better. Currently I’m training my bum to just get use to the saddle for long hours. Also do believe cycling outside will be a bit better and faster.



Cycling on boxing day. Swapped my prosecco bottle to water bottle

I know well that I’m really far from where I wanna be, but I still have 26 weeks to get better. I promised my self that I’ll give my absolute best and that’s enough for me. There’s no point comparing myself to other faster people. Everyone is totally different, this is my journey and I’ll give my 150%.


1st week of 2018 DONE. 

From now on I’ll try to share my training a few times a week. Also will write-up some statistics so will be able to see how much did I improve from week 0 to week 30.


Guess what ?!

Thanks for reading 🙂



Chicago Marathon 2018 – Application

As I mentioned in my previous post I’m planing to run 2 World Marathon Majors in 2018.  You can read about my Berlin application and acceptance in HERE.

The application opened up on the 24th of October 2017 and it was closed on the 30th of November 2017.

If you planning to run the race there are a few options to enter the race. Loads of options for Guaranteed entries are available and there are also the Non-Guaranteed Entry ( Lottery ).

 Guaranteed Entries:

  • Time qualifiers who have met the event’s age graded qualifying standards (not me ).
  • Legacy finishers who have completed the Chicago Marathon five or more times within the last 10 years ( not me ).
  • Runners who cancelled their 2017 entry through the event deferment opportunity   ( not me ) .
  • Charity runners who are fundraising for an official charity as part of the Chicago Marathon Charity Program ( could be me ) .
  • International runners (non-U.S.) participating in the official International Tour Group Program ( could be me ) .
  • Runners who have completed the Bank of America Shamrock Shuffle 8K four or more times since 2008 and have signed up for the 2018 Shamrock Shuffle ( not me ).

Non-Guaranteed Entry:

If you don’t qualify for any of the above or just simply don’t have / want to spend money on fundraising / tour operators then your only option is to apply for the Lottery.

I was really hesitant about what to do. I knew well that I want to run the race no matter what. I was thinking about signing up for the lottery and if I don’t get drawn out then I will sign up with the same travel agency I used for New York ( 2:09 Events ). But unfortunately when the announced their 2018 prices I was surprised that they not offering the ” flight + entry” option any more. It turns out there was some changing in the rules so they only can offer ” hotel + entry” or the full package. I’ve done some calculations and for me and hubby the full package would have been well over £3000!  £1941 for me and £1599 for hubby for 4 nights, this price includes flights, hotel and my entry fee. Plus all the spending money we wanting to take. I really can’t justify spending this much money just to run the race and just for 4 nights :/

So after being disappointed I’ve decided to try my luck with the lottery. I’ve applied for it on the 24th of November.

Screen Shot 2017-12-05 at 19.52.43

I was thinking if they draw me out I only have to pay $220 to register , which is not too bad at all. They are notifying the runner about their results on the 12 of December. Which coincidently is my Name day. maybe luck will be with me this time.

But then after the application the more I thought about it the more worried I become. What if they don’t draw me out? I dint have luck with London x2, Tokyo x1 and Berlin x1. So as you can see I’m not succesful at all.

At this point I started to look into the Charity options. Most charity takes on International runners and their pre-lottery fundraising minimum is only $1000 (£750) which will increase to at least $1500 post-lottery.  In the next few days I was calculation which option is the best, should i risk not getting in with via the lottery then I will need to pay out $1500 for the charity. You read it right, I pay out the charity funds, wont do any fundraising. The reason behind this is I feel really bad about asking money from others for my races. I have 10 months to save up the $1000 which is easy doable, I can easily pay in over $100 / month. I could pay it off right now but I’m not in the rush.

Whilst I was searching for the perfect charity I came across Team Paws. everybody who knows me they know that i love  animals, especially dogs. If i see any video on Facebook about homeless or injured dogs I’m starting to tear up. So after reading up about Team Paws I knew that they are the perfect charity for me.

TEAM PAWS Chicago is a charity racing and fundraising team benefiting PAWS CHICAGO, the Midwest’s largest No Kill humane animal shelter. With TEAM PAWS Chicago’s support, since PAWS’ founding in 1997, the number of homeless dogs and cats killed annually in Chicago has dropped by more than 80 percent.

I’ve applied to be a charity runners for Team Paws on the 28th of November. Their sign up fee was $100 which includes loads of great stuff. Will explain it a bit later.

So because I already had my name in the ” lottery ” I had to ask the charity to contact the organisers and cancelled my lottery application and transfer it to the charity panel. Within a few hours I’ve received the below email stating that I am running the marathon 🙂 The fundraising minimum need to be reached by the 18th of September 2018.

Screen Shot 2017-12-05 at 19.53.00

They are raising funds for an incredibly thing, and it really worth every penny for me.

As I said earlier I had to pay a $100 registration fee, but for that I’ll receive the below perks:

  • Guaranteed Charity Entry into the 2018 BOA Chicago Marathon  After you register with TEAM PAWS Chicago, you will receive a link to claim your entry with the BOA Chicago Marathon.  Your spot in the marathon is not complete until you complete this step and you will have one week after receiving the link to complete.  Failure to do so will result in the forfeiture of your spot. 
  • Official TEAM PAWS Chicago Singlet  All TEAM PAWS Chicago members receive a TEAM PAWS Navy singlet.
  • Official TEAM PAWS Chicago Fan Club Shirt  Use these shirts to easily find your biggest fans along the race route!  The quantity of shirts you will receive is dependent on your entry type as follows
    • Self-Secured Entrants = 1 shirt
    • Pre-Lottery Entrants = 3 shirts
    • Post-Lottery Entrants = 3 shirts
  • TEAM PAWS Chicago Marathon Gift
  • TEAM PAWS Chicago Finishers Medal
  • 2 Tickets to the TEAM PAWS Chicago PAW-sta Party Held on Thursday, October 4, 2018 (BOA Chicago Marathon Weekend)
  • PAWS Professional Board Membership Fee Waived for One Year  TEAM PAWS Chicago members will receive waived fees for one year if they join the PAWS Chicago Professional Board (value $250).  To see a listing of requirements and more information, please visit our website HERE. 
  • FREE Entry into the PAWS Chicago 5K Walk/Run  All TEAM PAWS Chicago members will receive one complimentary registration into Chicago’s largest dog-friendly walk.  We will also have a group photo and members get to start at the front of the runners’ corral.  
  • Social Events  Meet fellow team members on fun runs, happy hours, dog-friendly events, and group fundraising opportunities. 
  • Guided Mentorship  Receive personal guidance from our seasoned pros, our Shepherds, who are not only past TEAM PAWS Chicago participants but also top fundraisers.  
  • Training Enjoy training and nutrition resources from our coaches and discounted training from our partners.
  • Fundraising Tools  Fundraising is easy with a personal fundraising web page, coaching, and resources to help you reach your fundraising requirements.

As you can see there are loads of stuff for that $100 and it’s totally worth it. It’s great that they are paying for my race entry fee ( $220 ) and I also looking forward to their Paw-sta party. Hubby can get of the supporter Tshirt and cheer me on all the way round.

Some people would say that I’m crazy spending this much on for races but I only live once. I run whilst I can and I spend the money whilst I can easily afford it, without using any credit cards and go into debt.

Hotel already been booked via booking.com and we are staying in the Chicago Lake Shore hotel for 4 nights, from the 4th of October 2018.  The price for that is £388 ( $522)  which induced all the local taxes already.

Flights hasn’t been booked yet, but they are currently on £710 for 2 people. Will buy this after the new year, we are not in a rush at all.

Just a quick summary of the costs for the different options, it’s for 2 people but only 1 running.

 Lottery  Tour Operator  Charity
 Entry  £163 ($220)  £382 ($500)  xxxx
 Hotel  £388 ($522) xxxx £388 ($522)
 Flights  £710 ($954) xxxx £710 ($954)
 Tour operator fee:  xxxx  £3118 ($4191) This includes the hotel and flights x2  xxxx
 Charity fundraising   xxxx xxxx  £750 ($1000)
  Total £1261 ($1695)  £3500 ($4704)  £1848 ($2476)

As you can clearly see the Lottery option is still the cheapest option, but then if I wouldn’t have get drawn out then the charity fee goes up from $1000 to $1500,  but still wold have been cheaper than the tour operators. Don’t get me wrong I loved my New York experience with 2:09 events, this time I simply didn’t chose them because of the massive price difference, from that money I’m saving for not using them ( £1652 ) we can use that for race merchandise, spending money, food money whilst we there  or even use some of it to pay off my Berlin entry.

As soon as I have any more update about Chicago I’ll let you all know 🙂



Berlin Marathon 2018 – Application

My plan is to run all 6 World Marathon Majors by the end of 2019. Completing London and New York this year I’m well on track. My plan is for  2018 to run Berlin and Chicago.

This post will be about Berlin and the application process.

The lottery application opened up on the 18th of October 2017 at 12pm CET.

I didn’t rush filling out the application form because it’s going to get decided via a lottery system. So as long as I applied between the 18th of October and 8th of November 2017, my name was in the pot.


I had to put in my Bank Card details, but they not charging anybody till the lottery been drawn. but if you get drawn out your card will be charged straight away. So will have to make sure there are enough funds on it.

I had options to choose extra stuff, but if you didn’t want anything ( finisher top, jacket, video, photos ect) then the registration fee was only €108 plus €6 for the timing chip.

I had to decided if I want the ” bag drop off ” or ” post race poncho “. After running New York I knew well I need the poncho.

I’ve also opted in to buy the adidas Finisher-Shirt, I do think it’s better to pre-order it. Just in case they run out of it at the expo.

Also selected to get my Medal Engraved and getting my Race Video.


Booked Services Selection Quantity Price
Participation fee 1 108,00 Euro
Rental Chip (ChampionChip®) 1 6,00 Euro
Clothing Drop-Off or Poncho I want to order a poncho (free of charge, instead of clothing drop-off) 1 0,00 Euro
adidas Finisher-Shirt Women L 1 30,00 Euro
Personal best time * Enter personal best time 1 0,00 Euro
Medal Engraving 1 9,00 Euro
MySports HD Race Video 1 4,99 Euro
Privacy settings for the tracking Public 1 0,00 Euro
Kreditkartengebühr 1 4,74 Euro
Total 162,73 Euro

They started to announce the results from the 30th of November. So by the looks of it Berlin done this much faster than London. I kept refreshing my email system all day long, I was hoping for a “You are in ” email.

My email arrived at 20.45 GMT and unfortunately it was the refusal one 😦


Well I’m clearly not one of the lucky ones.

  • 2x refusal from London
  • 1x refusal from Tokyo
  • 1x refusal from Berlin

Because I really want to run this race I spent all night thinking about my options. There were 3:

      1. Donate and Run

On December 7, 2017, we will open up 1000 additional spots for 168 Euros as part of the RTL Donation Marathon for children in need. 60 Euros of the payment for those spots, which are limited at 1000, will go directly to the RTL Donation Marathon. The amount of donations will be donated in full to a charity project for Berlin children.

     2. Tour operators

 2:09 Events Ltd , Sports Tours International , Running Crazy Ltd. , Swinley Travel Ltd

The problem I’ve found them that  almost all of them only offered the full package, Swinley travel offered just the bib for £259 but I never heard of them so didn’t want to risk it. Done my calculations and money wise it would not worth for us (me and hubby). Really expensive hotels, plus paying for the registration fee and then was supposed to buy our own flight tickets.

    3. Charity

The official charities can be found on this website. 

      So I have spent a few hours going through them , till I’ve found the cheapest one. Someone would say it’s bad saying I choose the cheapest, but it’s still money for a charity.  I’ve signed up with Prostate Cancer UK, their registration fee was only £20 with a minimum fundraising target of £500. The fundraising money need to be paid by the end of October 2018. So it’s not too bad at all, I can easily save up for it. If you want to sign up with them click on this link. 


So I’m running the 2018 Berlin Marathon. World Marathon Majors #3.

When I applied for the ballot I’ve already booked in our hotel via Booking.com so we got a really great deal. Only £315 for 3 nights ( Friday to Monday ) for 2 people. Also the hotel is not too far from the start and finish area, it’s only 3km.

Astrid am Kurfürstendamm

Screen Shot 2017-12-01 at 21.23.06

The only other thing I need to purchase is the flight tickets, currently its £75/person. But hopefully it will go lower a bit.

Total cost of the races is without the optional extras are: £985

As soon as I have more information regarding starting times, bib numbers I will make a separate post. You’ll find it under the ” World Marathon Majors ” – ” Berlin 2018 ” tab.



New York Marathon 2017 – Race Day

When I went  to bed the night before I knew that I will have a really long day in front of me on Sunday, so tried my best to be in my bed by 9pm.

Set my alarm for 3.45am, so I’ll have time to dress up, check my gear, have breakfast and make our way to the subway station.

Good night ZzZzZzZz


I woke up at 2.30am on sunday, which was supposed to be at 3.30am but because the clock had to go back an hour on sunday I was wide awake  an hour early. I tried to go back to sleep but couldn’t. So decided to stay in bed as long as I can and tried not waking hubby up. When my alarm went off I had my breakfast ( porridge ) and braided my hair as well. Just had to do a final gear check and dress up. We left the hotel way before 5am and got on to the number 1 subway to the ferry station without any issues. The subway was almost empty, 4 other runners were in the same carriage as us.

When we got to the Staten Island ferry station there were only a few runners, but loads of NYPD officers with dogs. Went through them easily, they just wanted to see my clear bag.

Staten Island Ferry Station – Manhattan 



When we got in around 5.20am we took a seat, because my booked ferry was the 6am. It turned out they were running ferries in every 15mins.

Waiting patiently for my ferry 


When the 5.30am ferry left a volunteer lady were walking around and telling people that they can get onto the earlier ferry, not a problem if our booked times is later on. I had a feeling that they just wanted to get rid of as many people as they could, so maybe this would be prevented the chaos later on. So we boarded to the 5.45am ferry.

By-bye Manhattan, see you in a few hours time. 


The ferry was almost empty, probably max a hundred runners on it, so not many at all. When we arrived to Staten Island I said goodbye to hubby, and he walked back to take the ferry back to Manhattan and I followed the others to the buses. Took us maybe 5-10mins to get to the buses, as soon as the bus was full the driver have closed the doors and we were ready to leave. We arrived to the starting point just before 7am. Another security check and I was in the starting village.


Have to say the starting village was huge, and thousands of runners everywhere. Seen some nervous faces but others looked totally chilled out and happy.


Absolutely breathtaking view


When I walked into my start area ( green village ) I was greeted by volunteers and got a Dunkin Donut hat straight away. Which I was carrying all around the 26.2 mile course.


In the starting village there were loads of things to do, or just simply chill out.  Picked up same bagel, coffee, energy bars, energy drinks, went to stroke puppies, and kept repeating this because I had 3 hours extra hours before start.


I was able to get into my start area just after 10am. whilst I was waiting around there I went to the loo quickly, because I really didn’t want to go at the first part of the race. As we approached 11am we slowly started to walk to the start line. This is when i met a guy called Simon, it turned out he’s from just outside of Basingstoke. What a small word! I never met him here, but when we both travelled to New york and bumped into each other there. I still can’t believe it. 50000+ runners and we met there. Because I was in the Green area I was running in the bottom part of the bridge. I didn’t really mind that because at least it wasn’t as windy.

Promptly at 11am the  shot the cannonball and the race started. Whilst I was standing there I was thinking about all the past months. I felt ready because my training went much better than the training for London. But I still questioned my sanity. But I knew already then that I will give my best, no matter what going to happen during the 26.2 miles.

Course map


The race itself was totally awesome, the first couple of miles wasnt many spectators due to the bridge and road closures but soon we reached into Brooklyn and the crowed appeared. Completed the first 5k in 36:20 and I felt really happy about that. I was following my ‘ jeffing ‘ strategy, which meant I run 1 minute then walked 30secs. Some people think it’s bad that I can’t run a marathon without stopping but this was my race so I really don’t care what others think.



Somewhere in Brooklyn.


When I got to the 10k check point my time was 1hr 14mins, which is roughly my normal time, and I was happy because I was well on track 🙂

Just before I got to mile 10 I had my meeting point with hubby, and it was really good to see him. I knew I still had a long way to go but seeing him gave me a big boost.

Which didn’t last too long :/ Roughly around mile 11 at one of the drink stations I have slipped on the paper water cups and felt my knee jumping in and out. I knew that feeling well because years ago I dislocated my other knee and I needed to have my ACL replaced. I tried to keep up my pace but it became harder and harder. I realised that I won’t be able to keep up my pace so have to give up my ideal finish time. so tried to re set my mind to the ‘ just get around ‘ plan. Which was hard because that’s not what I trained for. But sometimes life has different plans. When I reached 1st avenue just after mile 16 I desperately needed to visit the medical tent. The paramedic was lovely there, and bandaged up my knee and also got painkillers and ice spray. He asked me if I want to pull out and I said to him that I travelled thousands of miles from England to gere here, I wont quit now when I had 10 bloody miles to go! He smiled and wished me luck.

Silly melted slipper paper cups 


The bandage helped a bit, but I was still in so much pain. 😦  But hat to say the view at 1st avenue was awesome. IMG_3103

By this point I walked so much that I had no idea how much time I’ve lost. I kept my friends and family updated via my Facebook live videos, and I have to say I’ve got loads of support from everybody. Also on the different Facebook groups ( Run Mummy Run, UK Mudd Queens, and R.U.N. Marathon training & support) total strangers and friedns were cheering on me and probably got thousands of comments telling me to keep going and I’m awesome. My friends and family , and people from work who posted on my facebook wall or sent me a text message saying keep going, and the other tracking messages. Due to the time difference it was getting really late in england but these people ( Jodie, Claire, Bev, Sue, Niki, Katie and loads others ) kept me motivated and cheered me from thousands of miles.

I knew I had now less than 10 miles to go, so even if I had to crawl though the finish line I would have done that. My 16 mile spilt was 3hrs 27mins, which is still not too bad. but after that I didn’t run my hardest I tried to take it easy. To be honest it was soul-destroying because I really wanted this race to turn out well and beat my London time. Probably loads of people would have quited by this time but I promised myself that i would never do that. As my name bib motto was ” PR or the ER ” so there was no option for quitting haha.

The miles slowly went by and when I got to the Bronx, I was knackered, but I knew I had to go. Mile 20 split was 4hr 49mins, which was supposed to be roughly around 4hrs 5mins, so as you can see I was way off from my time. At one point even I sat down to the pavement and just burst out crying and totally believed that I can’t move anymore. But somehow managed to get some last energy and stood up and started really slowly running. Probably I was slower than a sloth and tortoise together but I was moving towards to the finish line.


At mile 21 we got back to Manhattan, at this point I tried to visualize the route map and kept telling myself that only a straight line down and 2 right turns and I’m at the finish line. Run Gabi Run!!!! I tried to high 5 as many people as I could and say thanks to as many volunteers as I could. Even high 5d Darth Vader, the force had to be with me then.

It’s started to get really dark now, so my plan to finish in sunset failed, at 4.45pm I was nowhere near the finish line.  By this time I was really questioning my sanity, and kept asking me why do I sign up for things like this. I must be mental or idiot?

Just before mile 25 I seen hubby again. Bless him he waited for me for hours and tried to cheer me on. But at this point I just wanted to finish, and I was a bit grumpy as well. He started to walk on the other side of the fence and he’s walking was faster than my running. Ohh dear me, I was in a complete mess 😦

I think the last 800 metres was the hardest. I knew that I’m absolutely close but still really far from the finish. C’mon Gabi left-right-left-right Keep going. When I finally seen the finish line it was really hard not to bust out f crying. I managed to hold myself up and crossed the finish line in a massive smile.

As soon as I crossed the line i got my space blanket from a volunteer sop that was keeping myself warm. From another volunteer I got my beautiful and hard-earned medal.


After this I received my goodie bag, which was really heavy. Well it felt like that after completing a 26.2 mile race. Roughly had to walk another half a mile to collect my post race poncho. Which is awesome and comfy and beautiful.

I finished the race in 6hrs 32 mins 14secs. 

Which I still don’t know how but it’s still 25 minutes faster than my London time. So even with a knee injury I got a massive PB. Not a few minutes, not at all, a 25 whole minutes. I can’t believe it.

Physically I was in so much pain in the second part of the race. but it turns out I’m really strong mentally. It definitely wasnt an easy ride, but I haven’t given up. Found the way out of my darkest thoughts, and quitting wasn’t an option.

It was a long walk back to the subway station but after that an easy ride to the hotel. Have to say New Yorkers are awesome!! THE subway was full but when we got on a lovely guy gave me his seat so I could sit down after the race. Loads of people congratulated me and it made me smile. It didn’t matter that I was slow at all, they just seen I completed the race and was so happy for me.

Hmmm what’s the chances for this? Someone else called Gabby lost her name bib and I stood next to it at the subway


Slowly we got back to the hotel and finally I had a chance to check out my post race goodie bag.

Goodie bag


My split times


The most beautiful medal ever



Found my name on the Marathon Wall


Beautiful present from Hubby


I have run 2 marathons in 2017, London and New York are completed. Now only 4 more to go to get my 6 star finisher medal.

2 down 4 more to go


How awesome are these ? 


This race wasn’t totally how i planned it out, but that’s life. I’m happy I completed it, not in the time I really wanted but it’s done and dusted , and I’m proud. Was really hard but I didn’t give up.

Please see my race recap video below, on YouTube

Thanks again for the support everybody it really meant a lot to me, and because of that I was able to dig deeper and complete the race.

I’m not the fastest but I’m crossing those finish lines, so if you ever worried that you are slow and people will laugh at you. DON’T! You run your own race, you compete against yourself and you beating your own times.

Now I have a few weeks to chill before I start my training for the biggest challenge of my life, an Ironman triathlon.



New York Marathon ’17 – Opening Ceremony

This blog post will be about my experience as the Hungarian Flag bearer at the New York Marathon’s Opening ceremony. If you want to read about my time at the Expo you can read it on here 🙂

So it’s all started a few months ago, in the summer time I’ve found an application form at the marathon’s website about becoming either the flag bearer or a delegate. I thought I’ll try my best and apply for the Flag bearer position. In September to my surprise I’ve got the email that they have selected me as the Hungarian flag bearer.

Screen Shot 2017-10-06 at 13.45.29

Hubby and I decided to get to Central park way before the suggested time, which was 4pm. Because mainly we wanted to have a look around at the Pavilion. Just before 4pm I said goodbye to hubby and sent him towards to the spectators area. We got him a free ticket to the grandstand seating at the Expo so he will be able to watch the whole ceremony in the first row 🙂

He had an awesome view 🙂 


So 4pm came and i was petrified, I never done anything like this before and had no idea what to expect. Never met with the fellow Hungarians so I was even more nervous.


As the flag bearer I wasn’t able to carry a bag with me, so was great that I had my new York marathon pouch, my passport and phone fitted in perfectly. Hubby had the camera so we were all set. At 4pm promptly I was able to go into the starting area, had a passport check and they made sure I was on the list. Went to find the volunteers with the massive flags. Told her many name and she crossed me off from the list and gave me my flag, oohh and also received a surprise present. All flag bearers received an Official Opening Ceremony Scarf. You can’t buy this at the shops so I was even more happy. When I got my flag I went to find our country sign and smaller flags. Still no other Hungarians were around :/ Met with a lovely guy from Honduras , he was by himself as well. So we took photos of each other and had a great chat about the marathon.


Slowly the Hungarians started to appear and it turned out it was 14 of us, 1 flag bearer and 13 delegates 🙂

The whole ceremony didn’t start till like 5.30pm so we had a long time to wait, but at least we had the option to chat with each other and get to know each other.


When it started the countries were going out in alphabetical order, and the announcer guy announced all flag bearers and had an interesting story about the country.

Ready to march. 


Hungary ‘s interesting story was:  that we will have 30 runners on the day, and every summer olympic we attended we got at least 1 gold medal 🙂 Impressive, I think.

So when we marched down till the end , the delegates had been sent to a seperate area to continue their street party with the other nations. Me as the flag bearer was sent back to the top and been told to send on the side of the marching route and wave the flag as the rest of the countries walking down. Have to say it was totally amazing.

It really felt like we were famouse people and got loads of love from the spectators.

USA marched in last and they got the most and loudest roars, but I’m not surprised because it’s their home.

When they were done the massive fireworks started and they played Alicia Keys – New York song. Amsolutely amazing! Everybody was singing and dancing along.

When it was all done I had to go back to the starting area to return my flag. When i was done with that I got a unique pin badge saying ” New York Marathon 2017 Opening Ceremony, Participant “. All these little presents here and then made the experience even better.

Scard for the Flag bearer, flag for the spectators, Pin badge for everybody


Close up photo of the pin badge.


When they hit the gong, the marathon weekend officially started 


It was a long and tiring day but if I can give you one advice, please apply to be part of the opening ceremony if you running the race in the upcoming years. It was awesome and you definitely wont forget it 🙂

I’ve made a short video about the whole opening ceremony, which you can watch below.


My next  blog post will be about the race day it self, so please keep tuned and thanks for reading.



New York Marathon ’17 – Expo

After a long journey from London to JFK we finally arrived to New York just after 1pm local time on the 2nd of November.

W decided to check into the hotel and drop our bags off before we went to the Expo.  Our hotel was located on the 29th street and the Expo was on the 34th street, so we decided to walk there. Had enough sitting on the plane. The location of the Expo was in the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, 655 W. 34th St, New York, NY 10001, USA.



We arrived just after 5pm and have to say it wasn’t busy at all! Security was top job, with bag checks and sniffing dogs 🙂 Have to say this place is MASSIVE and need to spend a few hours there just to check everything out.

Who’s ready to pick up their number ? 


So as soon as we got in we tried to find the bib pick up section, but as you can see in the photo above it was easy to find. My number was 71222 and there was absolutely no queue there. When I got there were loads of trainees because there was a main volunteer and she showed the other 4 people how to check my paperwork and passport, then gave me my pouch and showed me to the free t-shirt pick up section. I was done probably in like 5mins, so absolutely not a long wait at all. If I can suggest, then visiting the expo on the opening day is the best day.

My collection point with 5 volunteers 🙂 IMG_2619

The free long-sleeve technical top 🙂 I’m in love with it. 

The only negative thing to say about the technical top is the sizing, I’m a size Large but I had to get an XL, because they haven’t fit over my boobs :/ But luckily they had a trying on station so got the good size at the end  🙂

After the bib pick up we went to the shopping part of the expo. Ooohh dear me, all those things for sale, it was hard to say no lol. I knew that I wanted to get the official jacket, because I already had the one from London so definitely needed to get the New York one as well. New Balance had a massive stand with all the official merchandise. I wish I could have bought everything, but you can easily spend over $1000 just on merchandise.

But I was good, and only bought the official jacket, I have opted to get the red/black one. The reason being is that my London jacket is blue, so definitely didn’t want to buy that.

The jacket was $120 plus tax, and I also bought a New York marathon sew on patch. Not too sure what I’ll do with the patch as of yet but i couldn’t say no for $6.



I have to say I’m LOVING this jacket, loving the colour and way it fits. Also this one was okay to get a size Large, no fitting issues at all. Also I was wearing the jacket all week-long, and was awesome to see other runners wearing theirs.

At the expo we tried all the freebies we could. we had free coffee, free beer, got a free photo printed, a photo emailed, and loads and loads of photo taken. See some of them below 🙂

The only time I was on the top part of the bridge. 



Hello New York 🙂 IMG_2631


Left a note to the fellow Hungarians 🙂 IMG_2635

2 majors down, 4 more to go.


Being silly with hubby 🙂


What was in my starting bag? Also you can see the Marathon patch as well. 


Font of the  top and jacket. 


Rear of the top and jacket. 


My next post will be about the opening ceremony, that will include a short video as well. But to start with it was a totally awesome experience. 🙂



NYC Marathon Tracking

It’s almost race day and I couldn’t be more excited about it.

Today I finally managed to check into my flight and selected my seat as well. I’m flying with Virgin Atlantic  ( flight nr. VS 3 ) , leaving Heathrow at 8.50am and should land in JFK at 1pm. Before I selected my seats I had a read about the aircraft, it turns out seat 61K has a slightly bigger leg room and it s a window seat, so will be perfect for me. Being 180cm tall is not the best when you have to sit still about 7-8hrs.

So back to tracking, you can track me on the official app or on the official website.

My race number is  71222 so please search for this 🙂

For iPhone users: 


For Android users: 

Screen Shot 2017-11-01 at 11.55.50

If you don’t like using apps and would prefer to follow me on the website, please use this link below


This link will get you straight to my tacking page so you won’t need to search for my name or race number  🙂

Also if you will be home and want to watch it on the TV , please see below the channels which will televise the event. If you are in the UK you’ll be able to watch it on    FreeSports ( Freeview + TalkTalk + BT : Ch.95, SKY Ch.424 , Freesat : Ch.252 ). It starts at 1.30pm ( UK time ) and broadcasting till 4.30pm ( UK time ).


If you are in HUNGARY you’ll be able to watch it on Eurosport, not sure whats the channel number. It will start at 15.15 ( Hungarian time ) and finishing at 18.15 ( Hungarian time )


All other Countries with suitable channels are listed below, hopefully you’ll find the channel and you’ll be able to watch the race 🙂



I do feel ready for the race, now I just need get over the flying and get to race day 🙂

This is my last post till after the marathon but you still can follow me on Instagram or on Facebook. Please wish me luck and think about me on race day 🙂



NYC Marathon – pacing strategy

A week from today I’ll be already in New York , hotel checked into and if everything goes well collected my race pack. New York will be my second marathon and I’m getting incredibly nervous. I think it’s totally normal but still worrying about the smallest things. It’s my first overseas marathon, how will I recover about the time difference, will I find my way around New York and specially to the start?

I’m trying to be positive and keep myself calm, but it’s hard.

Today’s post will be about my pacing strategy. I started my training sometime around may, a few weeks after the London marathon. Luckily this time my training went really well, no slips or falls, and specially not a torn ankle ligament.

I followed almost the same plan I had for London. Downloaded an app called ” My Asics ” and was following that throughout the training. Usually I done my runs on Wednesday, thursday, saturday and the long runs on sunday.

As i said I do feel my training went well. Had a few trial races and I managed to do it in my expected time. As you all know now I’m not the fastest but I’m slowly getting there.

  • Basingstoke Half Marathon:  2:43:45
  • Great South Run – 10 miles : 2:04:27


A few weeks ago I’ve seen something awesome on one of the running groups on Facebook. There’s a company ( Races2Remember )  in Kansas City, USA who makes loads of different personalised items for runners and supporters

First I have ordered a ‘ name bib ‘ . At least with wearing this I won’t need to get a personalised t-shirt which can be much more expensive. I do think it looks awesome as well. Arrived to the UK in 7 days, so I think it’s a really fast shipping service.



After this arrived I came across their ‘ smart pace bands ‘. These are totally custom-made and the splits are following your estimated finish time, and also I was able to select the New York course.

First I had to select my ” pacing strategy” , I choose the  ” warm up” option.

Our Warm Up strategy starts out 60 seconds slow the first mile, 30 seconds for mile 2, 15 seconds for mile 3, goal pace for mile 4, and then settles into a faster than average pace until mile 20 to make up time and build a modest cushion for the end.

Then I choose my course  ( New York ) and they adjust the pace accordingly.

For each course, we carefully review the elevation and make adjustments for the terrain. We will consider how big the hills are, how steep, whether a mile is all up, all down or a mixture, and whether the hills early or late. It is a mix of art and science.

Typically, we suggest 5-10 seconds for a 50-75ft climb over a mile and 10-30 seconds for 100-150 feet. We start with the uphills and then find where to make time back up – starting with obvious downhills.

Finally I had to tell them my estimated finish time, a set of 3 pace band cost me $7.50 plus postage to the UK. I don’t think that’s expensive at all.

Also I choose a funny quote what will keep me going for 26.2 miles.

This one arrived in 7 days as well, so really please with the shipping time. They also offered me to post it to my hotel just in case it’s not arrived to England.

So back to my pacing strategy lol.

The pace bands I ordered are: 5:25 and 5:35 and 5:45


As I said my training went really well, so feeling really positive about my chosen finish times.

I would love to finish around the 5hr 35mins mark, which I think is totally achievable according to my training. I’ve chosen the 5hr 25mins just incase I’ll smash the course , and being under 5:30 would be great.  If I struggle on race day I will try to follow the 5hr 45mins pace and I still be happy with that.

The fastest pace is 1 minute faster than my last half marathon ( Basingstoke ) and the other 2 is 5-8 mins slower. So all should be totally okay for the race.

I also love the fact that I was able to choose to have mines in KMs and not in miles.

But to be honest I’ll be happy with any time as long as I finish the race and if everything goes well I can get a new PB. The London marathon was slow and painful due to my ankle injury so fingers crossed NY will go better.



Great South Run 2017 – Portsmouth

Last October I was at home and flicking  through the tv channels  I came across a running race called ” Great South Run “. I never heard of that before, and it was in Portsmouth. Which is about 50 mins drive from Basingstoke. Seeing all the amazing runners I’ve decided that it’s time for me to run this race. It’s a 10 mile race around Portsmouth and surprisingly really flat, but can be really windy.

the race this year was on the 22nd of October, but I travelled back to Hungary on the 16 just for a short holiday. Whilst we were away they announced it that Brian the storm is coming to england, so there’s a risk of cancelling the event. It’s by the coast and the sea can be temperamental. Unfortunately they had to cancel all saturday races, but luckily they haven’t cancelled the main race which was on sunday.

Because my expected finish time was over 2hrs I’ve been placed into the green wave, and our start time was 11.05am.

Woke up nice and early to eat my usual pre race breakfast, which is porridge. I usually eat just a plain one, because I haven’t found a great tasting one. Even when i bought the most expensive ones they tasted bland. So whilst I was back home I’ve bought my favourite porridge ever. it was roughly about 30p/bag so not expensive at all and also this only needs water , no milk required. If any oy you can suggest a great tasting porridge please let me know and I’ll try it out.


Went to pick up my sister at 8am and we were off to Portsmouth. Could of left a bit later but didn’t want to risk not getting there. They closed down most roads from about 9.30ish. So after that we couldn’t park at the shopping centre’s car park.

Got to Portsmouth nice and early, after a coffee break we started to follow the other runners and walked to the starting area.

final 8


The wind was really strong so I was worried that my race will be hard and I wont be able to keep my pace up, but at least the sun was shining 🙂

Was debating to wear my jumper or not during the run, but knowing myself I had a feeling that I’ll be sweating after a mile, so left my jumper with my hubby.

11am came quickly and we were off with my sister. She’s a much faster runner than me but she didn’t feel too well so decided that we will try to run together as much as we can.

final 4

The start was awesome, I never seen this many spectators cheering on a 10 mile course. But have to say the spectators were awesome all around the course. The only part without spectators were the dock yards, but that was only for a few hundreds of metre.

W started a bit faster than we were supposed to , ended up next to the 1h50 pacer bunny. But managed to keep up with them till around mile 4ish.

At the start area we have seen a few T-rexs and a whole squad of police force with ‘prisoners’. I managed to catch the police force and couldn’t say no for a selfie 😛 By the looks of it they clearly had loads of fun.



So the race was mostly uneventful, I managed to keep up my pace and we got to mile 5 in spot on 1hr. I knew well that eventually I’ll be a bit slower so there’s no chance that I’ll get under 2 hrs, but I wasnt worried or stressed about that.

Quick selfie with my sister.



The first water stop wasnt till like around mile 4 mark, but i didn’t want to get a drink because I really needed the loo by that time. But the queue at he loos were massive, if I’d stopped I would have lost about 1o mins and that wasn’t really worth it.

I’m pretty chuffed with my pace, other than a few 8mins once, most of them were in the 7mins mark. Can see it that I’ve slowed down a few times, but I mostly just wanted to enjoy the race.

Screen Shot 2017-10-24 at 19.24.22

from around mile 6 I was running alone, my sister decided to walk because she got stomach cramps and told me to go and concentrate on my own race.

By this time there were still loads of spectators out and also loads of runners as well. managed to get some jelly babies from strangers and that kept me going. Have to remember to take some sweets with me for my runs. Used 2 gels out of the 4 I had, but it felt more than enough for the 10 miles. Usually I take one every 30 mins, but somehow I didn’t need them on the day.

The last 2 miles were the hardest part, we were out on the coast and the wind got really strong. Stopped for a bit of walking bread and then seen the 2h5mins pacer running past me. that gave me a massive boost to start running and also managed to take him over. After that point I haven’t looked behind me, I just tried to be as fast as I can to stay front of him. Seen my husband at the 400m to go sign, that gave me the finally boost to run the last part of the race. When I got there I’ve changed my tomtom’s display to show just the time with seconds. I think it was roughly around 3h3 mins, I really wanted to be under 2hr 5 mins so tried to sprint off the last few hundreds of metre. The spectators must have thought I’m crazy cos sprinting off the last bit. But I have crossed the finish line in   2hrs 4mins 27secs. I felt awesome that I managed to get under 5mins. i know others running much faster than me, but this is still an achievement for me. My next goal is to get under 2hrs.




Shaving off 4.5mins is a hard job, need to keep up my faster pace longer and make sure I still have the energy for the rest of the race. I don’t have a set date to beat this time, so hopefully by the end of next year I’ll be under 2 hours.

After crossing the finish line I went to collect my goodie bag, at first I was worried that I have missed the medal collection point but after looking in my goodie bag I’ve found my well earnt medal. the goodie bag had some great items in it, loved the chocolate and also ordered the newspaper to get it delivered to my address.

Have to say I loved the race! It was nice and flat, the supporters were awesome, great medal and goodie bag. Perfectly organised race. I have a feeling that I’ll be running it next year as well. Because I have a time to beat now lol .

This was my last long run before the upcoming New York marathon, I’ll have about 5-6 more runs before the 5th of november but all those will be about 3-4 miles long.

final 5


final 2

final 6



Why so negative?!

I was thinking about this in the last few days to write this post or not. but at the end this is my blog and I can write about negative stuff as well.

So I’m part of loads of Facebook groups, about running and recently joined a few triathlon and specially Ironman ones as well.  Most of these groups are in english, either based in England or at the USA. Only a few of them are based in Hungary, which is where I originally from before moved to the UK.

So back to the main question, why so negative?!

When I told others on the English Facebook groups that I’ve signed up for my first triathlon they were surprised, when I also told it’s not any kind of triathlon it’s gonna be an Ironman then they were even more surprised. But they were supportive. Got loads of newbie tips already, and added a few people as friends on Facebook as well. So we can keep ourselves motivated. Also have been added to a totally new group, it’s for ladies who attempting Ironman UK Bolton next year. Totally newbies in the Ironman world , with or without any prior triathlon experience.

As you can see it’s all supportive and motivational. I havent been called crazy or stupid. Maybe some people think that but I’ve got hundreds and hundreds of comments all of them being supportive.

But at the other hand, I’m part of 1 hungarian triathlon group. When I joined I thought it will be nice to introduce myself, and tell the others my story. Who am I  and why I’m trying to complete an Ironman race. As soon as I mentioned that I’m a total newbie , I haven’t got one supportive or positive word from them.

I’ve been called in all kind of  names, been told that I don’t respect the sport and that I am a joke. According to them only people who training for at least 4-5 years should attempt an Ironman, or any even worse any kind of triathlon. Me being only 9 months away from Ironman Bolton I am a total JOKE and not respecting them.  They said there’s literally no chance that I will complete the race.

I’ve tried to explain to them that I’m not trying to break any record or even be close to be 8 Hours, I just want to complete it. I’ll have 16 hrs 59 mins 59 seconds to complete it.

I am strongly belive that I CAN and I WILL do it. I do believe that 9 months training is more than enough to finish and Ironman race. I already have a begginer plan, which will start ont the 18th of december, and I’ll follow an awesome triathlete training plan, which is the ” Be Iron Fit: Time-Efficient Training Secrets for Ultimate Fitness ” written by Don and Melanie Fink.

Probably if I want to be close to 10 hours then I will need to train for years and year to achieve that.

I really don’t understand why my own kind of people are so narrow minded, compared to the rest of the triathlon / running community. Of course there are others who don’t believe in me but they not slating me off on Facebook.

But to be honest it doesn’t bother me at all. I’ll keep sharing my stuff , training, struggles and everything else. If I fail at Bolton next year I will know that I given my best and try my hardest. But please remember my lovely naysayers even pro athletes pull out from races for whatever reasons they have and they do train days and nights.

Also I’ve noticed the same negativity in a few hungarian running groups as well. Somehow back at home people don’t agree with the run/walk method and been told off that I’m not a proper runner because I have walk breaks. But just remember I doing my OWN race, and I don’t compare myself to others. I’m breaking my own PBs and not yours.

So watch this place – if you still want to – and see where I end up in July next year.



New York Marathon – Confirmation Form

Few days ago I was checking my NYRR profile and noticed that they have added a new tab onto my home screen.

It said ” Download my confirmation form ” or ” Email my confirmation form ” .

I got super excited about this, because it means that from now on I’ll know my start time and starting coral.



As you can see my race number is 71222, so if you want you’ll be able to track me on race day. There’s no app / website been released yet, but it will be available at the end of October. Please keep an eye one this web page .

I’ll be starting in Green Wave 4 and Coral E, and  my starting time will be at 11am. I have put down a slow finish time so i assume that’s why I’m starting at 11am.

I was a bit disappointed that I’m starting from the Green area, because that means I’m running at the bottom part of Verrazano-Narrows Bridge. It still okay, but I won’t have as awesome views as the people running at the top part.

See the starting colours below, GreenOrangeBlue


The website been updated with a few other bits and bobs.

Start time line:


The race village and starting area : 


Ps, have you noticed the doggie paw sign?? It means they will have dogs and puppies and runners can stroke them to make them-self feel calm. I think I will spend my morning there cuddling puppies.

The finish line and finishing area: 



I have chosen to get the post race poncho, so after I’m finishing the race I’ll be able to leave Central park at the 73rd street. Saves me walking a few miles to collect my bag.

Will need to plan my meeting point’s with my husband, because I really would love to see him at least 3-4 times during the race.

As soon as I have more information about the race I’ll post it up into a new post.

Thanks for reading 🙂




Oxford Half Marathon 2017 – Volunteering

A few weeks ago I’ve seen a post on Facebook in one of the running groups that a lady was looking for Volunteer team mates. She was planning to get 15 people to help out at the upcoming Oxford Half.

I never volunteered before, but in return to spend almost a whole day volunteering we were going to get a free entry one of  the upcoming Virgin Sport’s race. The available races are : Hackney half, British 10k and Oxford half.

I signed up straight away, because helping out and make others race awesome is already a great feeling, but also getting a free entry for a running race. It was hard to say no.

I’ve messaged my sister straight away asking if she wanted to take part as well. She said yes 🙂

The race was on the 8th of October, and we had to be there by 7.30am. Which meant we needed to leave Basingstoke at 6am. Way to early on a Sunday, but I was thinking about the bigger picture.

Luckily I was able to park in a pub’s car park and because the roads were closed I could have stayed there for the whole duration. Didn’t need to worry about the car at all.

We were station at the Lucozade station n3, which was roughly 9.7 miles into the race.

The rest of the team was lovely, and it turned out all of them were from Oxford and they working for the same company.


Our ‘boss’ handed out the uniform we had to wear for the day. It was a read high visible vest and a white Oxford half cap. At the end of the day we were able to keep the cap but not the vest.

We had thousands and thousands of Lucozade bottles, all 500ml and we had to portioned them out by roughly 100mls. It wasn’t a hard job but took a long time.


Working hard filling up the cups: 


When the race started my sister and I decided how to organise the re-fills. We agreed that she goes from right to  left ton the table and when she runs out a section of Lucozade I had to be fast to re fill them.

The race started at 9.30am but we haven’t seen the first runner till after around 10.15am. but after that we didn’t have time to stop.


We also cheered on the runners and give them all the motivation and support we could have.  Looking at them they were absolutely great about our work, and loads and loads of them thanked us. It felt really good to help them out and keep them going.

We finished our day roughly around 12.30pm, then done a quick tidy up and rubbish collection, said good-bye to the others then we were on our way back to Basingstoke.

The journey to home took a bit longer because loads of roads were still closed in Oxford, but as soon as we were on the motorway the journey time went back to normal.

I think I will keep an eye on the volunteering opportunities because it was absolutely awesome and had a lovely day there .




Decathlon UK Discovery Morning

A week or so ago I’ve seen a post on facebook that Decathlon was holding a Discovery morning up in their head-office in London. They were looking for different kind of people to give feedback about their experience in Decathlon, or someone who wanted to try the items out but wasn’t too sure about it.

Filled out a really easy questionnaire made by google forms. They had a few different time slots, 2 weekday one and one on the Saturday. I decided to apply for the Saturday one, it meant that I don’t have to rush up to London straight after work and i can spend some time to do some shopping in London on Saturday.

Few days later I’ve got an email confirming that I was a successful candidate and they cant wait to see me on Saturday.

Forgot to mention that every participate will get some Decathlon freebies and they supply lunch and drinks. So it’s all sounded really good to me. I can take the train to London for free ( perks for working to the railway ) then get the underground which is always only a few pounds.

Canada water: 


I had to be there at 11am on the Saturday, because I don’t like being late i got there just after 10.30am. They have offered a free 30mins pilates class at the beginning but because I just bruised my knees I didn’t really wanted to make it worse. While the others were doing their pilates I had to wait in the conference room till 11am. Which meant I was the first one who was able to pick the colour of my goodie bag 🙂 So it definitely wasn’t the worst idea getting there first and not doing the pilates session.

Wasn’t many of us participating on the discovery morning, 8 of us all together. Which went down to 7 , because one of the guy was working for decathlon so he wasn’t able to stay.

We all started with a casual introduction, name, where we from, do we know decathlon ect.



After that we had to answer 2 questions.

  1. Our best customer experience

I didn’t specify one, but I said that warranties and returns are handled much much better in England compared to the Hungarian system.

2.  Our worst customer experience. How they company could of made it better ?

I said my worst one was at the airport. I travel a lot, visiting family back in Hungary. I always taking the same suitcase and its a tiny little hand luggage. It’s always fits into the measuring box in England, but never in Budapest. So I have my measuring tape with me and measure it for them. So they can’t fine me.

The next 2 exercise was a group exercise. For the 1st one we had to make an ‘ inspirational ‘ board with pictures and quotes from the magazines and newspapers we had on the table. If i remember correctly we had around 10-15mins to make one, and when we were done with it, we had to explain the reasons why we put them onto the board.

Here’s ours below:


After this we had our 2nd team exercise. We got a paper with loads of questions and had to go over to the Decathlon shop across the road and answer as many question as we could in 30mins. It was all about the brads and items. For example we had to find a specific bike and write down different specifications. The whole exercise wasn’t too hard, it just take us a long time to find everything because most of us wasn’t familiar with the shop.

When our time was up we walked back to HQ, to get our scores. Not too sure how but our team won 🙂

We went over to the lunch area, where there were about 10 boxes of pizza, fizzy drinks, beer, sweets etc. Had a few slices of everything and a beer as well. Why not? It was all free, hehe.

I think we finished roughly around 1.30pm, so it wasn’t a long day at all.

Back to the freebies part, everybody got a backpack, water-bottle and a Large towel. Because I went into the room fist i had the option to pick out the one I want first. I got the grey / yellow one so it matches with my Puma leggings. Colour coordination is so important haha.

To my surprise the backpack is the cheapest, and the towel is the most expensive.  But still its totally affordable and great quality, also Decathlon offers 356days long returns.

Check their prices out below. 


Hmmm needed to model the items with my matching pants: 




I think after this day I will definitely will visit Decathlon more.









Tikiboo capris – my first one

I’m part of a few ( can’t even count how many ) running groups on facebook. That’s where I’ve seen the brand Tikiboo first. They make the most awesome leggings in the World. I always wanted to buy one but never could really afford to pay £30+ for a single pair of leggings :/

Last Friday was my payday, and I really wasn’t planning to buy anything running related, because we going back to Hungary in a week time and after that we flying to New York. So October and November will be really expensive months.

BUT… I’ve received the below email on the same day :

Screen Shot 2017-10-10 at 11.54.50


25% off from selected summer stock. Hmmm I thought I’ll have a look, because I can’t resist an awesome sale.

Went through the items and have to say there was a fair few I really liked. But I couldn’t buy all of them unfortunately.  I really wanted to buy a colourful and funky design one.

Everyone who knows me they know that i love colourful stuff. I don’t really have just black running pants, I prefer the multi colour ones.

I decided to buy the one called ‘ Pop Art‘ and in the capri design. So i still can wear my funky colourful compression socks with them.

Luckily they had it in my size, so I placed into my basket. Originally it was £32.99 but with the 25% off I managed to buy it for £24.74. Absolute bargain 🙂

I’ve choose the normal 1st class delivery, and my lovely postie brought my parcel on Saturday morning.

It fits absolutely perfectly, love the little pocket at the back, the material is nice and stretchy. I’ve done the squat test and it’s definitely not see through!! So far I’m absolutely loving it.

I already bought a capri to run New York, but I think I’ll use my Tikiboo instead. Its fun, colourful and the Americans will love it 🙂

Check the pictures out below, and let me know what do you think.







Basingstoke Half Marathon 2017

01.10.2017 the date of this year’s Basingstoke Half Marathon. I have run it last year, and as soon as registration opened for the 2017 race I have signed up.

Last year I’ve run it with my sister and my finish time was 2:44:13 so my plan for this year was to beat this time, even if it’s only with a few seconds.

All week before the race I was constantly checking the weather forecast, I was really worried because it said it will rain. I don’t mind rain, but running a half marathon in rain is definitely not my ideal race.

Luckily because it was my local race and the start was across the road from me I was able to wake up at 8.30am! Usually when I travel to races I need to wake up much much earlier, sometimes even 5am.

So had a nice lay in then made my usual pre race food, which was a big bowl of porridge , banana and a massive cup of coffee.

We left the house at 10.15am because my sister was waiting for me at the start line to wish me good luck.

Hubby and I on our way to the start:


Me with my sister:


When we were waiting around for the start of the race I spotted the ‘pace makers’. To my biggest surprise they even head a 3hr one. I don’t remember having one last year.

I put myself between the 2h30 and the 3hr one, because last year i finished in 2h 44 so was hoping to finish in a similar time.

The race started bang on at 11am, weather was okey. No rain or wind, for me it was the perfect running weather. Not too hot and not too cold.

The start of the race was really uneventful. Probably I started out too fast, but slowly managed to get back just under my planned pace.


Also started my Gymboss, which helps me with my ‘ jeffing‘ strategy. I do 1min run then a 30sec walk and I keep repeating this till the end of the race. Some spectators find this weird and kept saying ” keep running” or ” you can do it”. They not really understanding this whole run-walk-repeat strategy.  But I got used to now, don’t really listen to them, usually give them a big smile and keep continue my own thing.

I always start at the back of the pack and keeping myself to the side of the road. I don’t want to hold any faster runners-up, or make them tripping over me when I stop.

During the race a few runner asked me about my strategy then I happily explained to them what I’m doing and why. They took me over but I took them back over at the  2nd part of the race. That’s why I love ‘jeffing’ i’m not getting as tired and can keep up my pace for a whole half -marathon.

The Basingstoke course is really really hilly :/ Have a look at the elevation, pace and heart rate chart below.

Screen Shot 2017-10-07 at 20.15.57

Screen Shot 2017-10-07 at 20.16.03

My pace was pretty constant throughout the race, expect the hills. I tried running as much of them as I could, but when I could not then I just started walking.


I’ve met a lovely girl ( forgot to asked her name ) but she told me that she follows me on Instagram and that I’m awesome with my running, and she has no idea how can I do this much running. So if it was you – girl with a green charity top and a knee brace THANK YOU!! This is one of the reason I share my good and also bad days on social media. Even if I motivate 1 person I done my job well 🙂

I’ve reached 10.2km in 1h 16mins, which is around average for me. I was pleased with it, could have been a bit faster but because of the hills I didn’t punish myself being upset and disappointed. I knew that almost half of the race is done and I needed keep going to finish and to beat last year’s time.


I’ve seen some AWESOME people on course. See below a guy wearing his full army kit ( includes a 25kg bag, I’ve asked ) and the guy next tim him wearing his full fire department kit. I totally respect them ! I was struggling on course sometimes without anything extra, and they smashed the course even with the extra kits.


Because I run the race last year, I knew where the photography guys will be. As soon as I spotted them I knew what I had to do. See the results below. Hehehe




They even managed to catch a few ‘flying feet’ photos.

There was loads of volunteers around the course. I loved the fact that they were handing out water and energy gels. Loads of them were children but have seen a few elderly as well. I want to thank you for all their time and effort, they really have made my race day better.

Also there were loads and loads supporters around the course. There was a guy with his dog and a massive cowbell at the top of one the hills, another guy had a boxing glove and the Rocky music was playing in the back ground. I couldn’t stop smiling when I got to the top of that hill. Loads of people had a proper family day out there, just to support us. The only time when I can take food from strangers is on race day lol, loads of jelly beans and harribos were handed out. Basingstoke half marathon is nowhere near as big as the London marathon but have to say our crowed support is absolutely incredible.

On my way back when I’ve seen the Holiday Inn I knew that I only have probably another 7 mins running to go. I’ve stopped my Gymboss and was planning to run the whole last km. Everything went will till I got to the massive hills by the tennis court.

I checked my watch and seen that I was below my target time I decided to walk up the hill a bit. As soon as I was on the top of the hill I knew I’ve done it, even if I have to crawl across the finish but I’ve done another half marathon!

At the finish tunnel I’ve seen my other half waiting for me and cheering for me.


I’ve crossed the finish line in 2:43:05, which is faster than my last year time! I beat my time, only by a minute and a bit but I still done it!


I was also happy with my splits, and even managed a few fast ones at the second half of the race. You can clearly see when I had the hills to climb.


But I am happy with it, my target New York Marathon pace is 08:08mins/km so completing a half marathon at 07:40 is pretty good for me. I feel really confident about New York.

At the end I’ve collected my race medal, a few bananas, chocolate bar and a bottle of water from the volunteer kids.


So in summary I had a really good race, to be honest for next year i really need to practice those brutal hills, but I’ll get there. i have another time to beat and I know well I’m capable of it. Maybe I even try to do it 5 mins faster, lest say to be under 2h 40mins that would be awesome. I have the plan now I just need to do the action to make it happen.

On the thursday after the race I went to buy the local newspaper called Basingstoke Gazette to see if I made to the finishers list or not. I did indeed 🙂

920 Gabriella Waller 02:44:17

They have used my finish time, not my Net ( gun ) time. I always use my net time because I never start from the front line and it takes me a few minutes to cross the start line.


Also see below the official finish times from the website:

Screen Shot 2017-10-07 at 21.12.06


If anyone fancy signing up for this race, than click here 🙂




Flag bearer for Hungary at the 2017 TCS New York City marathon’s opening ceremony

During the summer I was reading through the New York marathon’s website and I came across an interesting article. During race week they will hold an ” Opening ceremony “, which will be on the Friday. This sounds totally new to me, because when I was running London earlier this year, they did not have any kind of opening ceremony.

What is it? 

The TCS New York City Marathon Opening Ceremony Presented by United Airlines, a spectacular event that celebrates the diversity of the race, kicks off TCS New York City Marathon weekend!

Following a pre-show at 4:45 p.m., the Parade of Nations begins at 5:30 p.m. and showcases runners from around the world as they parade across the finish line. Representatives from NYC running clubs and several U.S. organizations, as well as professional runners and wheelchair athletes, are part of the procession. The TCS New York City Marathon Fireworks Presented by Poland Spring lights up the night sky after the parade.

The festivities are free and open to everyone—tickets are available at the TCS New York City Marathon Expo Presented by New Balance and the TCS New York City Marathon Pavilion throughout race week, as well as on site. Come out and be a part of the celebration!


There was an option to apply to become a “delegate” or the “flag bearer “. I decided to apply to become Hungary’s flag bearer. I have no idea how many people applied for it, or what was the other runner stories, but I have nothing to lose. I’m only planning to run the race one, so I really wanted to get the full package.


Because I haven’t heard about the application in September I thought I was unsuccessful. But last Friday ( 29th September ) when I was sitting at the cinema I got a notification on my Apple watch. Only was able to read the subject of the email : You’ve Been Selected to Be a Flag Bearer on November 3.


I almost jumped out of my cinema seat in happiness. As soon as the movie finished I rushed to get my phone to read the whole email.

Not sure how but the organisers selected ME to carry the Hungarian flag.


I feel incredibly proud, honoured and happy. I never in a million years thought that they will choose me. I thought maybe I could be a delegate or not even that. I thought they usually give these positions to pro runners or celebrities. Well, I’m none of them but they still choose me.

Now just need to decide what to wear, what clearly shows that I represent Hungary. I really want to wear something with the really popular and unique Hungarian folk flowers. Luckily I’m travelling back to Hungary in a few weeks time so will pop in to some shops and try to buy dress or just a lovely top.

Anyone fancy sponsoring me with a new outfit?

The TCS New York City Marathon Opening Ceremony Presented by United Airlines takes place in Central Park south of the finish line.

Watch the TCS New York City Marathon Opening Ceremony Presented by United Airlines on ABC7NY.com starting at 5:25 p.m ET (9.25pm UK time, 10.25pm HUN time )  and live at 5:30 p.m ET (9.30pm UK time, 10.30pm HUN time )  in the NYC-metro area on WABC-TV, Channel 7.

As soon as they provide me more information I’ll give you an update.



Ragnar Relay – White Cliffs UK 2017

What a weekend ?! When I signed up for this I literally had no idea what to expect. Run 170ish miles with 10 friends on the coast of England, day and night!

From Maidstone to Dover to Brighton. Long long way in a car, even longer when you have to run it.

If you want to read the proper description about it please click here and it will take you to the official Ragnar site 🙂


So at the beginning of the year I’ve seen a facebook post in one of the running groups I’m part of, that they looking for 10 “crazy” ladies to complete in the first ever UK Ragnar Relay. It was a no brainer for me to sign up. I love challenges and it was the first one ever her, I wanted to do it. I never met the others before but we all have a common interest, which is OCR ( obstacle course races ) so at least I had some common interest with them.

This is how I become part of the UK Mudd Queens team, we chose to run it as a team of 10, not 5 like the ultra runners.

After a few months preparation and training the day was finally here.

The day before the race I baked some vanilla and chocolate cupcakes for the team, and they were all decorated with our logo.


Some team members stayed in a hotel the night before up in Dartford, and they drove to Maidstone on Saturday morning.  Because our allocated start time was 10.30am I decided to take the train in the morning, it saves me on hotel fee. I took the first trains from Basingstoke to London Waterloo on Saturday morning, then another train from Waterloo East to Maidstone. I’ve arrived to the start around 8.30am, had a bit of a looking around then waited fro the rest of the team to turn up.

Met up with the others shortly after and they even managed to speak with the race director so we were able to start at 9.30am.

IMG_1551 2

Below you can see Michelle running at the start 🙂



Before the race we agreed about who runs which leg of the race, it was 30 legs and 10 of us, so every team member was running 3 times.  I choose to be runner nr 10, which meant I was running leg 10-20-30.

By the time it was my turn to run it was already dark. I set off at 19.15 to tackle 13.15km. I had all my high vis and head torch on and was totally ready to do my part.


Luckily it wasn’t really hilly, and some part was even on the coast. Seen beautiful boats and loads of people on the seaside. But I also had to run through the middle of nowhere. Running with just a head torch on and no people around me was totally scary. I was thinking to walk some part, but I was too scared to stop. Probably I watched too much horror movies. But have to say I wasn’t disappointed with my finish time and pace. Could of been a bit faster  but it was in total darkness and in a totally new route.  My pace turned to be 07.49mins/km, which I was really happy about it. Because my planned New York marathon pace will be 08.08mins/km.



Ater the run I tried to get some sleep in the van, but it wasn’t the most comfortable sleep. But a few hours were better then no hours at all.


I tried to be awake at changeover points, just to cheer on the finisher runner and wish good luck for the new one. I didn’t always managed to do it, but most time I done it.

I have’t started my 2nd run till 07.09am on the Saturday morning. I was really happy with this, because I was able to run in the sunrise.


Leg 20 was another flat course, it was a bit shorter distance ( 10.67km) and most of it was on footpath. Luckily no night time running or running through the dark forest.

Beautiful scenery, seen some kind of  Military base, loads of ponds and some cute cows.


My second leg was a bit – 10 mins – slower than I wanted, but because of the lack of sleep I wasn’t really disappointed.  Finished still within my New York marathon pace so it was all okey.



Since last night we had some issues with the front left tire, but by this time it started to really giving up. They called up AA to get our tire changed so we could be back in motion. Been told that they guy will be with us in 2hours, but luckily he turned up in like 30 mins and it take hime about another 20 to fix the issue and we were back on track.


A we tackled the distance we got closer and closer to the beautiful White Cliffs. At one point we got upto a massive hill and view was absolutely breath taking. I think I could of spent a whole day there and just to chill and enjoy the view.


After a few more hours it was my turn to run again, my final leg, our team’s final leg. We agreed with the ladies that they will join me just before the finish line so we can cross it together 🙂 When I started my last leg I was already knackered due to the lack of sleep , but I know that I only need to tackle down another 8.45km and we are officially finished.

My last run was mostly on the coast and was able to enjoy the lovely breeze, I really took my time with the run and just enjoyed ” jeffing ” ( 1min walk – 30sec walk – repeat ). I was “jeffing” the previous 2 runs as well, and it really does work for me.

When I got closer to the finish loads of people were on the foot path and got loads of cheering as well. Felt really good to get motivation from total strangers, it gave me a kick just to continue.

As you can see my time got slower and slower as the race progressed, but have to say its all due to the lack of sleeping and not eating proper food.



Getting closer to the finish line I spotted the others and they were waiting for me to get there so we were  able to cross the finish together.  When we crossed the finish I felt relieved and proud. I was proud that we completed the race even with a few hiccups during the race but we never given up.

W have finished the race in 31:37:18.2, which I think is really impressive


Awesome photobomb by Emily :




As a celebration we got a free pizza ( 8 slices for 10 ppl :/ ) and a glass of free beer.

After that I packed my bags , asked for a lift to the Brighton train station and started my journey home.

Am I gonna do it again? Hell yeah!!! Absolutely awesome days, and loved every bits of it. Lack of sleep wasn’t the best but at least I will know for the future to what to expect 🙂


Want to say thank you to the UK Mudd Queens for letting me join to the team and also to organise the whole journey 🙂



Social Run Group by Up & Running Basingstoke

A few weeks ago I’ve seen a post on facebook that the local sport shop – Up & Running Basingstoke –  starting a ” Social Run Group”. They plan to run the sessions on Wednesdays and the distance is an easy 5km. According to their leaflet ” all abilities ” are welcome and no one will be left behind.


When I seen it I was really sceptical ,because I’ve attended 2 training session with other companies earlier this year and I was left totally behind. Even when their advertisement said everybody was welcome to attend.


When I turned up on the 13th of September I was totally nervous. Most days I run alone, or with my sister, but never with others. I’m always scared that I’m too slow and just holding people back.

The meeting point was in the shop, which is about 5 mins walk from my house, so I can’t really have an excuse about not turning up.

When I got there a few runners were already in the shop and also the shop assistants. Everybody seemed nice, talkative and friendly.  I have to say I’m awful with names so I still don’t remember anyone’s name :/ But I spoke with a few lady runners and turned out 2 of them only just started running and never run in a group before.

Shortly after 5.30pm we left the store and walked towards to our starting point,  which was just opposite Domino’s pizza.

The run went really well, it was not my fastest but I totally enjoyed it. Have to say that the organisers kept their promise and they waited for everybody ! I was in the middle of the pack, and when the fast runners got far ahead they done a loop and went to the back of the pack. So no one was left behind. I felt really good about it, because I was totally worried that I gonna end up being last and lost.


Here’s an after photo :


Sine this I’ve done 2 more session, and all others were the same. Not once people were left behind. On our 3rd week we  went on a different route, which ended up a bit shorter than 5k, well according to my TomTom watch. But I didn’t really mind because I just want to enjoy these runs and get to know more and more people.



It’s really good to see new people turning up to these runs, and I love seeing all abilities. I know well I never going to be the fastest and the person who finishing first, but I do like attending these.

Also on the positive note, when a runner attends 5 runs he/she will get a lovely bright yellow ( high vis type ) running club t-shirt 🙂 2 more runs to go for me 🙂

They also told us that will have different kind of competitions, like running without a watch/phone and will need to guess our finish time etc.


I’m really looking forward to next run, which will be in 2 days time 🙂

If anybody wants to sign up for the runs, you can do it on this website and it’s totally free.



Be Iron Fit by Don & Melanie Fink

I was planning to buy this book ( click here for Amazon )  for a few weeks now, but had to wait till payday to get it. Ordered it on last week Saturday and to my surprise Amazon offered a Sunday delivery to a near by Amazon locker.


When I got the text message from Amazon on Sunday morning that my book is ready for collection, I felt like sprinting to the shopping centre just to get my book.

I’m already half way through reading it and making notes and can’t wait start my ” just finish ” plan in mid December and be ready for Ironman Bolton UK in July 2018 🏊🏼‍♀️🚴🏼‍♀️🏃🏽‍♀️




Swimming here I come

A week ago Friday I finally managed to sign up to do swimming in my local swimming pool. The gym offers loads of different gym packages, including ” just swim ” for           £26/ month. I don’t think that’s a bad price at all. Before i signed up I have checked their timetable and it suits my working hours perfectly.

Will plan to go down and do an hour swimming at least 3 times a week. My Ironman plan doesn’t start till the 18th of December so till then I just need to learn swim properly so I’ll be ready for the proper training plan.



Swim session nr1.

Decided to have my first swim on a Sunday morning at 8am. I really thought it will be empty because its Sunday, but to my surprise it was totally packed. My pool offers 3 different speed lane ( slow, medium, fast). Because I just starting out I decided to swim in the “slow” lane.

On my first session I was just concentrating to be able to be in the water for a whole hour, distance wasn’t really important. I’m absolutely awful with front crawl, so I just swam in breaststroke. First I didn’t feel too great about it, but when I got home and done a bit of googling it turns out its totally acceptable to swim in breaststroke on an Ironman.



Swim session nr2.

Did you know 64x 25m is exactly 1 mile?

Second time back at the pool. This time I went there at 5.30pm and surprisingly it was not busy at all. Started my swimming on the “slow” lane. I swam 30 lengths in the slow lane, but it started to get really crowded with all casual swimmers. So I decided its better if I go over to the  “medium” speed lane and continue my session there. Because it wasn’t busy at all I didn’t feel bad about swimming in the “medium” lane.  Still was only swimming in breaststroke. Have tried a few metres in front crawl, but my breathing is horrendous. Water was going in and out of my nose and mouth. Felt like I was drowning, so i went back to do breaststroke.

By the time I finished my 64 lengths it was only 57mins into my swimming, so compared to my 1st session I was already faster, slowly but surely I’ll get there.



As soon as I feel more comfortable and can see that my swimming is improving I’ll definitely will get a few 1-2-1 sessions with a coach to improve my swimming even better. Also when the weather will be better I’ll go out for a few open water swim session.



Ironman Bolton , UK 2018 

Ironman , Bolton , UK.   15. July 2018
Swim 2.4 miles. Bike 112 miles. Run 26.2 miles. All. In. One. Race.

I’m 28 and a chubby female. I run the London marathon this year and straight after I decided that I’ll do all the Marathon Majors by 2019.

A week ago I was wondering what else could I do , what should be my next challenge side by side with my 5 other marathons.. That’s when I came across triathlons, further searching i’ve found Ironman.

Never done a triathlon before, last time I swam was about 15 years ago back in primary school, I do casually cycling but not further than 15-20 kms. So this will be probably the biggest challenge in my life.

 I know I don’t fit the mold of the “normal” triathlete by any means. When most people think about an Ironman athlete , they think of a 30 or 40 year-old man who is absolutely ripped and muscly. His body fat is 9%, he rides a bike like he was born doing it, and he can run a marathon in 2hours.

And then there’s me. I am 28, female, and while I’m somewhat athletic, can run/walk a marathon , I’ve never been described as “ripped” in my life, more like someone who’s chubby, and who like cakes and pasta

But as the motto of Ironman is ” Anything is Possible ” I want to show it to everybody that I’m capable to do it.

320 days till race day. Till then I’ll swim + bike + run and then repeat all day and night ✌🏼🙌🏻



Vlog of the 2017 London Marathon

I will forever remember this day, what a day ?!

This was my first marathon so I really wanted to take loads of videos and photos for the future.

Everything was going really well till half way point, and after that everything went downhill. We were on target for 6 hours finish but at the end I managed to finish in 6h 57mins 31sec.

This wasn’t what I planned for but due to my dodgy ankle I was happy just to complete it.





Welcome on my site :)

Hi all 🙂

My name is Gabi or can call me Gabriella, I don’t really have a preference.

I’ve started running in  November 2015 when I signed up for my first ever Half marathon . I never run that distance before, but I knew that hard work and dedication I can definetly run that distance.

From November 2015 till April 2016 I was training really hard for the race which was in Reading, Berkshire, UK.

The half marathon was really hard, not physically it was more hard mentally. When I crossed the line at 2h 47mins I cried in happiness. I hoped that I am capable to running and when I did it I was relived.

Since than I run many more half marathons and countless 5-10ks.

Running a marathon has been bucket list material for me and something I have always wanted to do. I managed to secure a charity place for the 2017 London Marathon and I fundraised over £1350 for MACS.

The race was incredibly hard, unfortunately I injured my ankle ligament in February so I hardly done any training for the marathon.

But as soon as I crossed the finish line I felt awesome, i felt I could do anything I wanted, nothing could of stopped me.



A week later the marathon when I recovered from the soreness I was thinking about my next challenge. That’s when I came across something called ” World Marathon Majors”.

This consist of 6 marathons across the globe:

  • Tokyo
  • Boston
  • London ✓
  • Berlin
  • Chicago
  • New York ✓

So me being enthusiastic I’ve signed up for the upcoming New York marathon. I missed the ballot or charity applications but I’ve found a tour operating company ( 2:09 events ) who offers places to the WMM events.

So here I am training for all these marathons.  I do believe with hard work I can achieve anything I want.

I set this page up so i can share more of my experiences and stories.

You stil can follow me on Facebook or Instagram but the longer details always will be here.


Thanks for reading,