Finished My 1st 1/2 Marathon Yesterday!

Thank you all for your support and advice in my previous post where I asked if I should still go ahead with Windsor 1/2 M despite having only managed to train as far as 6.6 miles prior to the event.

Well yesterday was D-Day! We arrived at Windsor nice and early and WOW there were loads of people!!!

Got bags stashed and went to the loo, then milled about a bit feeling nervous...then about 20mins before the start decided we probably needed the loo again, seems like the other 4000+ runners had thought this too so the queues were HUGE!!!

Standing in line we could hear the starter counting down, and as I finally reached for the flush and legged it out the cubicle he was on '30 seconds....' eeeke! we went and got in line somewhere between the 2hrs 20mins and 2hrs 45mins marker posts. Our aim was to come in around 2hrs 30mins for our first ever attempt, and our second aim was not to walk a single step.

Set off up the hill in a nice steady pace keeping with my running buddy (who had also only managed to train in prep up to 7 miles)what was surprising was the number of people walking! There were loads, we were less than a mile in and already there were walkers. I didn't really understand this but it seemed pretty frequent so I guess it must be normal?????...

First loop of 5.5miles was good felt steady and none of the hills were too much of a struggle. My bro who was going to run with us but had flu instead image was at the cross over point where we began lap 2 and he handed us some energy gels, which we ate (my god these are rank!)these perked us up after about half a mile, and I could feel the extra energy (or placebo effect?...) working.


  • at about 10 miles a girl was collapsed on the side of the track, this was a bit shocking to see! She was being well cared for by first aid, but it did hit home that we were actually doing something pretty strenuous!

    My playlist was keeping me entertained and helping me block out the sound of my own breathing, and I had written the water/lucozade stations down on my hand and the mile points they were at. This really helped motivate us as we could break the run down into little sections.

    At 11miles I felt great knowing that past that marker I was just eating into mile 12 and then it was just the final straight. The support on the side was brilliant esp a very loud man shouting at us at the bottom of the last hill 'c'mon last hill', that made me giggle! image

    Turning the corner and seeing the finish arch was brilliant and we whizzed down the hill overtaking people and increasing pace, we saw our supporters and they waved and cheered, and this spurred us on further. I actually found I had quite a bit left in the tank and tried to really push it the final bit over the finish line.

    I can't quite believe I have managed this now! I can say 'i have run a half marathon' and I came in at 2hrs 29mins so super chuffed to have hit our time target too. I think we could have pushed on a little more and shaved a bit off our time, but we were playing it safe as we had no ref to go on having never done this distance before.

    I am really astounded at how far I managed, and it has made me feel like I underestimate myself, with good planning, and the right attitude I can actually achieve more than I think!

    Bit stiff this morning, mainly my hips giving me jip. I watched some of the video and think I can see why, I seem to have a bit of a 'wiggly bum run' it's fairly embarrassing and probably the reason for the achy hips - so any tips on how not to wiggle very much appreciated!

    First thing I did this morning was check times and we started in gate position 3550, and finished in chip position 3497, so do I take that to mean I overtook 53 people who were ahead of me in the starting line up?...

    Thank you again everyone for your advice and support, second thing I did this morning was enter a local 10k in November - here's hoping for a sub 60 time!!!

    C x
  • Congratulations, inspiring story.

    I really don't get people who walk it from mile 1, I generally start HM's in the sub 2hr groups so I don't see them so early, but seeing people walking from 8-10 miles is quite common,

    The crowd support certainly pushes you on eh... Having your name on your shirt helps, people calling your name and urging you on, real buzz. Especially in that last few miles when your energy levels are getting low.

  • aaahhh I wondered why people had their names on their tops! I'm new to all this! image

    Yes I think next time I might start a little further up then I will get carried along a bit quicker at the start and then be able to settle back down
  • Well done and good luck for the next race!
    Know what you mean about the walking - I like to be able to say I ran HM, marathon etc. A lot of people these days use a run walk strategy but I'm not convinced by that. In an ultra maybe but a HM? Still at least they're not sat on their arses scoffing junk even if they do walk a bit so it's a positive!
  • Congrats Chlobo.  I was there yesterday.  Great run.  So what's next?image
  • @Jeremy G yes good point any exercise is good after all. I couldn't do a walk run method once i walk that's it 'game over'

    @Mon77 next up a 10k in running buddy did text me 'paris half marathon in march 2012?' ......jury's out on that one atm...
  • Great race report Chlobo - well done!

    a 10K will feel like a walk in the park in comparison

  • @mathschick that's what I'm hoping!
  •  well done great my first HM next month and my training aint been so good.was starting to stress about it but reading that has helped put my mind at ease.good luck in your next race.
  • @baggie9999 I think you will be ok as long as you get in a comfy rhythm and just stick to it. Deffo take an energy gel for half way, it really helped me. I had only done a 10k 3 weeks before hand then a few 5ks running up to it. I did make sure I deep heated and tubigripped my ankles and knees straight away after though, which I think has really helped.

    Good luck! image
  • Well Done Chlobo! image
    Great report too - takes me right back to my first Half Mara 5 1/2 years ago
    I predict you will go "race crazy" now, and within a year you will be targetting a sub-2 Half... image

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