Great North Run

I am attempting the GNR for the first time and think I will do around 2 1/2 hours. Is there anyone out there doing it for the first time on their own and aiming at about the same time. Perhaps we could arrange to meet up before the start and encourage one another on.



  • hi there TTR,

    There are a few threads about the GNR in the events section... you might get a bit more feedback from there!

    Good luck with the run... enjoy the atmosphere!
  • Hi there TTR

    I had hoped to complete the GNR in about 2.1/2 hours but training has not gone well (make that training has not gone) and think I would be a bit slower than you. If you like nearer the time (how much nearer can you get) get in touch and we could arrange something for the day (providing I've found somewhere to stay or talked my other half into driving me down and hanging around for hours without moaning too much).
  • if you do arrange to meet up with people, would suggest being VERY specific as to where... there are alot of people there, arranged along a motorway. distinct lack of landmarks (other than bridges, buses, and time markers)
  • Hi Tryer

    Sounds like we have had the same problem re training. Like you mine has not gone to well so we would probably be good encouragement for each other. I think we should try and make contact, what do you think?
  • Thanks bouncer, I'll try there as well!
  • TTR, the Runners World pacers will be doing a get-you-round pacing group aiming for a time of...2.5 hours. I expect to be joining it, at least for the first half of the race. Meet you there? I'll paint my claws pale pink and carry a copy of Runners World under my arm.

    Cheers, V-rap.
  • ill be the blobby one in long tights with specs on
    See you there

  • V-Rap,

    As a first time 1/2 marathon runner, I'm interested in this. Have you done the GNR before and if so, did you use the pacing group then ?

    The reason I'm asking is that although I'm hoping to do a bit faster than 2.5 hours - between 2:10 and 2:20, of course there's no pacing group for exactly that time.

    Should I consider sticking with the pacing group for a while, then trying to increase the pace as the run progresses ?


  • Mikey, I've never done the GNR before, but on present form MIGHT be up for a time slightly faster than 2:30. The RW pacers are very accurate.

    I plan to do what you suggest and join the pacing group to begin with, see how I feel around halfway, and pick up speed if I believe I still have 6.5 good miles in my legs.

    What I plan NOT to do is what I did at the FLM - went tanking past the pacing group at about 2 miles, joined them when they caught up with me at 18 miles, and had to admit defeat and drop back after about 20 minutes with them.

    See you there! Maybe we'll do the same time.

    And forgot to say: I'll be the one with the scales and the big sharp teeth and the Camelbak full of lukewarm coffee.
  • V-Rap

    Hi I'm new to the sight as I have just resumed running after a short break of 35 years! I thought you should know that I did the GNR way back in 1982 off the back of two 5 mile training runs( a mate dropped out so I took his place). The killer in this race is at the end when you have to negotiate the John Reid Rd, it is a long slow climb of about three miles and it really separates the men from the boys. Even Kevin Keegan went past me pushing a disabled guy in a wheelchair. It was exceptionally hot that day, something like 90 degrees at 10.00am, but I managed to finish in 2h.20mins.
  • Well done, Kevin. What a fantastic time for no training! I'm well impressed. Are you still that fit?

    So it's two weeks of hill reps for me, then!Fat chance - I'm no way ready to run up and down the same hill a dozen times in a training session, even though I have identified the very hill I will eventually use and seen someone else do hill reps on it as I jogged in the opposite direction. She was younger, taller, and slimmer than me, with perfect hair and top-to-toe lycra, and she didn't even seem to be sweating. At least, if I remember from the television coverage of this year's GNR, I'll have plenty of puffing podges to run with.

    And it won't be 90 degrees on 6th October! I'm more worried about whether or not my legs will get cold. Might join Ruth in the legging brigade.

    Cheers, V-rap.
  • Ive got some new leggings
    Dark blue adidas in the sale
    And my runing vest for cancer research arrived today
  • Hi TTR
    I am not sure at the minute if I am going to make the GNR after all. Training has been awful but I will let you know after this weekend if it is worth my while trying to run. I may be even slower than I thought and am not sure. Do you know what kind of finishing times the slower runners usually finish in. I could be anything from 2.1/2 to 3 hrs at this rate.

  • Tryer,

    as this is my first attempt too, I'm not sure what the slower runners finish in either. However, the official documentation shows that a 'sweep' vehicle travels the course at 17 minute miles.

    Apparently, it's not until you fall behind the sweep vehicle that you're out of the race.

    If you managed it in 3 hours, you'd still finish nearly 3/4 of an hour ahead of the sweeper.

    - By which time I'll probably be sitting on the sweeper vehicle's bonnet!


  • All you guys doin' the GNR good luck. I did it for the first time last year as part of a novice/semi-experienced group, never having run seriously before in my 40+ years and did it in 2:10. Judging by your training you'll have no problem in getting round and will probably surprise yourselves if you have never done a half before. Usual advice - it can take up to ten minutes and more to cross the start from when the gun goes so don't go off too fast. The first water station is four or five miles and can seem a long time in coming, however by that time you're almost a third of the way there. See Kevin's post re the John Reid Road as it can be a bit of a struggle but the view at the end when you see the coast can bring a tear to a glass eye!!! Once you clear the finish go to the Sanddancer for a well earned drink - the crack is great. Didn't make it this year but thinking of you all - go for it and best wishes.
  • Calling all podgy people
    Ill be there-and im fatter than you!!
  • I'm going to enter the GNR next year to try and beat my 1982 time of 2:20. I only started running again about ten weeks ago and am only able to manage 4 miles in 34mins so far, mind you, 10 weeks ago I could only manage 100 yards before I was gasping for breath.
    I will be thinking of you all, remember to keep something in reserve for the John Reid Rd and enjoy the race, there are alway tons of spectators lining the route and they really encourage you
  • Hi Tryer

    Well it looks like I might not be doing it either. The last couple of training runs I have had a problem with my calf. Went to the Dr today and he thinks I have damaged the muscle. I see the physio on Monday. Gutted!!!

    Like you I would probably have been around the 2.45 - 3.00 hour mark, but that might all be a distant dream now!
  • Tryer,

    When I did 2:20, there were literally hundreds and hundreds behind me. Don't be discouraged, the first 5 miles are fairly slow, I had no option but to literally walk the first mile because there were so amny competitors. I only really got going after 3 miles, so you may be pleasantly surprised on the day. How does the saying go.

    "It is better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all"

    Give it a go!
  • I only want to finish...OK, now I want to finish within 2:30. But if I like the distance (and I fully expect to), I'll be looking for a half with a smaller field and getting stuck into some speedwork.

    Big talk! Shove over, Mikey, there's room for two on that bonnet if we snuggle up close.
  • Hang on , Ive just reread this thread
    Oh dear, might get caught by the road sweeper thing in that case
  • Hi Benz

    There is only 1 hill I believe but its big.
    And no you won't be the fatest there I beat you. I@m more than podgy.
  • Does anyone know where I can find a course profile on the Internet? By that I mean the sort of altitude against distance so that I can see the sort of gradients on the course. I did find one, but the text was to small to read. Cheers
  • bet Im fatter than you
    How about a joint effort?

  • Pete,

    I've got the image scanned into a 156KByte JPEG. Unfortunately, I'm sure the runner's world site won't allow attachments so I can't email it to you.

    However, if you send me your mail address, I will mail it. If anyone else wants it, do the same.

    If *lots* want it, I'll put it on my website so's they can go and grab it.



    PS - It'll be an hour or 2 before I'll be back to check my mail.
  • Pete
    The information book that was sent with your number has a basic course profile in it, just not in huge detail. It is enough to give you an ideas though.
    Don't worry about the hills too much, the steepest one is after the bridge so your still fresh & shouldn't cause any problems. From there, its more undulating than hilly until the John Reid road. This is a bit of a drag from about 10.5 to 12 miles, but if you've saved some energy, you should be ok. Then there is a short, steep, downhill onto the front, before the flat run to the finish.
  • Hi Benz a joint effort sounds good but I am going to be doing the run walk effort with a very slow time say 2.30 - 2.45 and no you can't be fatter than me and still run. I must wobble with my efforts. Remember the wombles well I resemble one of them.
  • Im aiming for 2.30, but think that might be faster than 12 minute miles
  • Hi guys and girls,

    By the sounds of it you're all far far better prepared than my husband. We're supposed to be doing the GNR 'together'. His training schedule:
    June: 3 mile run. Pulled calf muscle.
    July: ditto.
    August: 2 mile run. Knee hurts.
    Sept: 2 visits to the physio, who recommends exercises he'll won't do in a month of Sundays.

    He's a cyclist who can hammer out an 80 mile bike ride without any probs so I know his fitness is there, but suspect adapting to a 1/2 road marathon may tax him. And strangely enough despite living with someone who's full of helpful suggestions and good advice he's not interested!
    So I'm callously abandoning him to his fate and running my own race.

    Anyway, I've done it twice and rest assured the vast majority of runners come in between 2-2.5 hrs and plenty more after that. So none of you will be last I practically guarantee, and certainly faster than my husband.

    Good luck to all.

    Good luck to all.
  • PS Please don't be put off by the so called hills. It is not undulating by any stretch of the imagination, and the ascent you're referring to is so gradual as to be completely unnoticeable. I can only recall one other hill'which is over in a few minutes.
    Lots of people walk these bits (and much more!) so you won't be alone if you do run out of puff in these places.
Sign In or Register to comment.