Marathon Prep and The Weather

I’ve been quiet these last few weeks, mostly concentrating on completing all the other academic related bits and bobs I’ve been juggling, like teaching, tutorials and the post-PhD job hunt. Oh, and running. A lot.

So here I am, the day before the Greater Manchester Marathon (#runasicsmcr) feeling a little jittery. I think the change in weather has really thrown me off proper. I’ve been training in mostly cold weather conditions (between -4C and 10C in the wind and rain) then suddenly there sun! Lots of it. Argh.

Attempting to control my rising sense of panic I dug through my closet and started trying on running clothes to see what warm weather alternative I could muster. Then I reminded myself of the old running rule: “nothing new on race day” which helped bring back my sanity.

So I’m sticking with my original plan (see photo, just missing my watch), and with a little luck the weather will stay cloudy, cool and dry tomorrow!

My marathon running 'plan'
My marathon running ‘plan’

The anti-climax of submitting “thesis_FINAL.pdf”

And so, the last leg of my PhD experiences came down to this:

Thesis correction list received from external examiners- read.
Thesis edited as per corrections listed – done.
Corrections sent to external examiners for approval – yes. 
Corrections approved by external examiners – yes.
Final check of thesis for other typos etc. – done.
Final version of thesis – submitted (online). 
Thesis received by university administration – approved

And that was that!

Throughout my PhD I thought the final thesis submission would be this big deal. Like some fireworks or trumpets or, I don’t know, some kind of “TA DA!” sort of moment.

My thesis submission was definitely NOT this eventful!

In reality, it felt more like a quiet sense of relief. I think the run up to the viva and the aftermath that followed was certainly the most memorable point of my (UK-based) PhD experience. Everything that came afterwards had this sort of bureaucratic feel to it. I suppose emotionally I was less involved, so when I pressed “submit” for the last time, I felt very calm, almost detached. It wasn’t a negative feeling or an overly positive one either. Maybe once I print out the hard copy of my thesis this will all feel more “real” but for now, I’m glad this part of my PhD experience is over.

(Comic by Jorge Cham via


Guest blog post on STEPS

stepsThis week’s blog post is published on STEPS, a University of Manchester PGR blog. In this blog post I discuss the questions asked during my viva which may be of interest to those looking for more examples of viva questions. Please click on this link to read my blog post:

Image by rahego via Flickr (CC BY 2.0)


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 893 other followers

%d bloggers like this: