I know this is a little late…. but I have been trying to catch up with a few bits and pieces !
For those that don’t know it the Three Forts Half Marathon is a lovely (hilly) race over the South Downs. It has to be one of the most local races to me and also one of the hilliest without driving to a mountain somewhere.
Since just before Christmas I’ve been recovering from an ankle injury and then some sort of strain in my lower leg so I haven’t been doing the volume of running that I would have liked to have done. Also this year is the first year that I haven’t been training for a Spring Marathon so I really didn’t know where my fitness level would be on this one. Because of this I chose to pace one of the other women in the club who wanted to achieve a sub 2:30 time on this race… It meant that I would have someone to run with and chat to and wouldn’t necessarily be running flat out…
As you may also be aware I have been appointed as one of the Brooks Inspire Daily Running Coaches and the week before this event a box full of new shiny Brooks running gear arrived, including trainers !
So, everyone knows that you shouldn’t try something in a race that you haven’t fully tested before…. Only in my head I wasn’t racing, just going for another training run so I started the day wearing all new Brooks running kit ! This really does have to be a good test of kit though; if you can put it on and run a half marathon without it causing any problems then it is ok kit in my book….
My day didn’t start brilliantly, my water bladder that I normally carry decided to spring a serious leak so I had to ditch that and just run with a water bottle. No big deal really but I had been aiming to carry the additional weight as part of my training for the next Fan Dance Race…
I met up with Anne, my running partner, and we had the most perfect running conditions ! Not too hot but dry and sunny with a bit of a breeze to cool us down…. The other thing I forgot was my peaked cap so I did buy a sun visor before the start of the race (more untested new kit !) and it was brilliant at keeping the sun out of my eyes and stopping me squinting 🙂
Through my amateur radio hobby I did know some of the marshals manning the radios and it was lovely to see them on the way round. The aid stations are one of the highlights of this race for me; any race that provides cake on the way round and pretzels at the finish really has thought about the runners and what they may need. It is always wonderful to see the Town Crier who stays to give out the medals to ALL the finishers, it can be the little things that make a deal different to how you feel about a race and this one makes you feel that the runners are important rather than just a means to make money (something I’ve felt at some of the larger more commercial races).
After a print finish I crossed the line in 2:26 (and 2 seconds !) meaning that we achieved Annes goal of 2:30. I do get an immense amount of satisfaction in helping people achieve their goals 🙂
Here are a few of the photos…..
In Part 2 I’ll cover the Brooks kit….