John Austin Half Marathon

Anyone else entered for this? Just entered and now doing some research into where we actually run!

Wondering if anyone knows how muddy the bits they say 'might' be muddy are, and can anyone recommend any cycle paths in the area for the rest of my family to amuse themselves on whilst I run!



  • I'd say be prepared for anything B&T!
    i did a half in the new forest last year (not this one) in March and it was the hottest day of the year so far, but given the amount of rain we have had recently the mud could be over your ankles!
    loads of cycle paths

  • Thanks Max's Mum - so "Expect the Unexpected"!  Just ordered a cycle path map for studying as well.

  • well i havent been over to the new forest lately but similar terrain (eg high heathland ) in dorset is dry in places and over ankle deep with soggy mud in others!
    i must admit its not as bad as it has been, but definitely trail shoes will be in order image

    Just read the course notes on the website, they seem to think that the course is fairly suitable for road shoes, and you would assume they would know their course well.

  • They say "Overall the surface will allow good fast pace running for an off road event. There will be some sections of softer ground after about 8 miles. If the course is dry then racing flats or normal trainers would be a good choice. If it’s wet then you may want a bit more grip. "

    Still doesn't help much!

  • so basically, expect the unexpected!
    I would imagine if there is not any rain between now and then, you may be OK, as a lot will have drained.

  • I'd be more interested if it was the Jane Austen Half Marathon and everybody had to wear Empire Line dresses and lace bonnets image

  • haha! that would be fun!

    you up for that B&T?image

  • A lot of the first half is run on the shingle pathways that go through foresty bits and then through the heathland. Second half it gets a bit muddier. Like everywhere the forest is soaking at the moment so there will be some bits that will get your trainers dirty, but overall it won't be horrendous.

    The terrain over the first half is perfect casual cycling territory.

    I wouldn't buy off-road shoes just to do this race as road shoes should be just about ok. Similarly if you only have heavy duty off-road shoes they might be too much. If you have something more hybrid in nature like the Salomon Cross-Max or Mission or a "trail" version of an Asics/Saucony/Adidas/Brooks road shoe, that would fit the bill nicely.

  • Screamapillar / max's Mum - oh yes - I think a Jane Austin Half much more my sort of thing. No lycra needed but can we have Mr Darcy emerging from the lake at some point as well?? image

    Sebastian - thanks for that. I have some trail shoes but they're not very good - not much grippier than my road shoes, and infinitely more uncomfortable! Based on what you said, I'll probably stick with my road shoes. If it pours with rain next week I'll just tie my laces tighter image

  • Hi.  I agree with the road shoe approach.  The trails around Brockenhurst are pretty good and you should get enough grip with a regular road shoe.  Trail shoes will probably be a bit unnecessary and if like mine, are not quite as comfortable.  Just don't wear your brand new, out of the box, pristine white road shoes.  There will be mud.image

    Got myself a nice knee injury doing a half on 17/2 so hoping that I will be OK for this as I have been looking forward to it.  I would recommend The Snakecatcher just up the road from the finish for a post race drink/grub.

  • Hi Dean,

    That's really helpful - thank you. My usual running shoes are black and usually covering ion mud anyway so sound slike they'll be fine! Hope your knee is okay on Sunday - and thanks for the pub recommendation for some post race refuelling. Great name image

  • In retrospect maybe trail shoes would have been better??  Trails were fine for most of the course but those couple of miles were proper off road.  I ended up losing both of my shoes in a boggy bit.  Nevertheless, really enjoyable and quite challenging race.  Knee held out and enjoyed the cakes at the end.image

  • Dean - yes, there were some proper muddy bits - real off road! It was a good race though, once we were off the heath (that was windy!) The marshals were all great - they must have been frozen!
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