BUPA Great North Run 2006

To all the GNR 2005 forunites. The chat can continue here!


  • Oh & the forumites are welcome too!
  • Why is that then John? What's wrong with the current start & whats better about tour idea?
  • I agree with JA - the start cannot cope and hasn't for years - I've done the last 6 GNR's.

    They should maybe look at staggered starts like they did for the GSR last year and this year.

    10 minute intervals between starts - give everyone a coloured number according to predicted time.

    Now I appreciate that this will need much more organisation and thought into the start line layout and setup (baggage buses, water, organising people etc etc etc), but the running experience would be so much better.
  • There's a valid point here.

    I also think they should lower the 17 minute mile cut off. I know people who came in well over 3.5 hours!

    The issue is that the fundraising/publicity/charity aspect has become bigger than the "race". having said that, it's what got me into it and back into running, so it can't all be bad. I've also got two guys at work into getting themselves fit. One of them stopped the weed, and ran 1.47! The other has lost 10 pounds in weight during training and says he feels better than he has done for years. However, there are those who treat it as a stroll, and as we've seen, it is demanding.

    it's interesting that the provisional date is 1st October.

    Staggered starts, especially given the chip times now used (4 hrs after i finished it was online), has to be the way forwards imo.
  • I totally agree - chip timing should encourage people to start with runners/walkers of the same pace. I didn't want to start near the front as I would have gone off too fast.

    I have sympathy for runners who pick up injuries early on or go off too quick and are forced to walk the majority of the race but I got so annoyed this year by the "ramblers" who I went past during the first couple of miles side-by-side blocking half the road who started with no intention of running.

    Fund-Runners (as Crammy and Brendan hate to call them Fun-Runners) play a big part of making the event the spectacle that it is - but they should take others into consideration.

    I've done 9 halfs (7 GNRs & 2 at Silverstone) but have just entered my first local one in 2 weeks to see how it compares. My only worry is that while 1hr 50mins will place you quite high in big events like the GNR, I'll be nearer the back behind all the local club runners.

    Oh well - wish me luck!
  • Mikey

    I only run to keep fit for other stuff, and because I used to run to a county standard in my teens I can still do OK without too much training (such a long time ago!) but the GNRs have reminded me how much I used to enjoy it.

    It's an interesting point that you make about local runs putting you at the back, I'll find that out for myself in Worksop hopefully at the end of October.

    Unless I make a drastic change in my lifestyle/training patterns, I'm not going to drop much below my weight/build which probably compares to the average rugby league centre/loose forward! Every time I go out and run, I have to remind myself that I'm not the lithe 10 stone 18 yr old anymore, but I can run steady 8 minute miles for a couple of hours. So what if I get left behind by the club guys, it is about enjoying it and accepting the challenge. Going back to running for me has improved my stamina no end, has probably made me better at work and has made the wife appreciate me more!

    As for the club runners, there are plenty talking on other threads about being happy to break 2 hours, so i should be well in front of them!
  • Mikey, You won't be near the back of many local halves with 1hr 50 mins. There are many 'club' runners who run slower than that, they just enjoy running. There are plenty of smaller races which, whilst having a different atmosphere to the larger races, can be just as rewarding. You may also be able to increase your pb as you will get a better start. Treat the GNR as a novelty event and use the local events to build up your experience. Best of luck.
  • all this talk of walkers starting too far forward, i know some slow people will have started too far forward, but a lot of it is due to one side of the road starting much faster than the other side. i started right at the VERY back, and crossed the start line well before the 9 and 10 min mile people on the other side of the road. not everyone who APPERAED to start too far forward was being inconsiderate.
  • Very true san - the right side went off at least 5mins befoer the left had even moved. We were at the 11min mile marker on the left and the last markers on the right had long gone, therefore the faster runners on the right were bound to come across those who were walking early on.
    I did find it strange how many people set out to walk most of the way - ok so i had to walk a little, mainly down to cramp, but here were plenty walking before and while we were crossing the bridge - thats less than 2miles in! - surely if you are going to enter the GNR you would or at least should be expected to run most of the way if not all.
    i don't know what the solution is, the walkers do slow the runners down, but in a large event like this has become i can't see what they can do about it without
    a) the faster runners accepting they won't break many records or pb's or
    b) changing it into a totally different event than it is now and perhaps spoiling some of the fantastic atmoshphere it creates!
    personally i'd have a) anyday!!
  • I'm hoping to try for a place through the ballot for next year. Now, time to go find the previous thread & see how everyone did.
  • I agree with Dead Slow - if you want a PB, do another half marathon. The Great North Run was what made me start running in April. If someone had told me it was full of fast runners wanting to do PBs, then I never would have entered as I would have been too scared. The GNR has meant a postive lifetyle change for so many people, me included, and was probably many people's first race. I did find it strange that some people walked just a couple of minutes being over the start line - but this is due to inexperience, and probably the fact that it was quite hot.

    Give us newbies a break. We're doing our best to get fitter. Like San said the right side went off much quicker than the left, which probably caused a lot of the problems anyway....that and the heat.
  • There can be no excuse for people walking within the first few minutes of a race, no matter how hot it was. Heat would only become a factor much later in the race. The truth is that some people had no intention of running the race and therefore should have started at the back of the field and been instucted to keep to the side of the road to allow people who wanted to run to pass. This happens every year at this event and is nearly always the most contentious issue in these forums. Unfortunately the people who walk this event do not read these comments as the web site is RUNNER'S World.
  • well i might as well just hang up my running shoes now and go for a walk instead then eh?! i run at 11min mile pace and i am extremely proud of myself for being able to. ok yeah i would love to be speedy gonsales and get round a half marathon in under 2hrs - BUT I CAN'T!! i can however run at my own pace and finish in what i consider a respectable 2hr52min - ok so i am slow but who cares! i certainly would not be better off walking, and to be honest i don't know many people who can walk at 11 min mile pace!
    ok so some people walk, yeah ok, they get in the way, but stop taking it so seriously, what if we are fun runners? at keast i am running and maybe if i get the chance i will be faster, but unless there are events like the GNR to cater for slower people like me i won't.
    the GNR is a fantastic event and that is why it attracts the numbers it does, i don't want it to become a race that only 'fast' people can participate in, i think it should continue to encourage people of all speeds to take part in and enjoy themselves - after all that's what running is all about - not times and speed!!
    Let us slower ones enjoy ourselves while running at whatever pace we can and find a faster course do do your pb's and run like the wind on!!
    sorry rant over!
  • Well it seems like everyone is having a jolly good time over here without me!!!

    You have all got your knickers in a twist...Ha! You guys need to chill. The GNR is never going to be the race you want it to be, the slow runners are happy to absorb the atmosphere and get lost in the crowds, the fast ones are always going to moan about the slow ones and walkers......

    I got to the start line quite late on and quite frankly, couldnt be bothered to walk 1 mile down the dual carriageway only to run back again. So i sat on a grass verge and watch everyone go. When my 10min marker came up i joined in. I started on the right hand side and ran into walkers almost immediately. These people are never going to start where they should, the sheer volume of runners, walkers and people shaking buckets cannot be controlled!

    The sooner we accept the GNR for what it is and stop moaning about it the better.....it has got me running this year, i am running another half marathon in 3 weeks and a couple of 10k's in winter and training for my first marathon next spring. The more i run the faster i will get. But when i go back to the GNR next year i won't be grumpy at anyone who gets in my way - for all you know they could be riddled with cancer, have brain tumours or even blind. The fact that they are out there doing it is all that matters. All you can hope for is that next year the organisers try and ram it home that these people should start in the right place.

    And even you fast runners must have been slow once!
  • Thanks OD - i've calmed down now - actually i ran a 9min mile yesterday but dont tell anyone - i quite like being a slowcoach!
    I love this running malarky don't you? running another half in 6months - (not quite ready for another one just yet i don't think) then maybe a few 10k's and the GNR again next year - who know's i might even be good enough to stand near the front by then?!
    happy running!
  • Hello all-Just to say i will be doing the gnr 2006,i paid my 30quid to secure my place for 3 years[my choice].So hopefully another 12 months of crack.

    Just a bit about the start debate-Ive done the last 2 great scottish runs and from my knowledge of "13" halfs,the start at the gsr has been spot on.When i first entered it i had to put my predicted time on the form,when i recieved my running number i was colour coded to go into a certain area at the start,i was also chip timed.When we started stewards took us down to the start where we were allowed to cross the start line when the previous group had set off about 3/4 mins before us.This year because of my finishing time last year i was moved forward into a faster time group.But the start itself went very smothly.I think this would be a good idea for the gnr.
  • aha... i've found it. are we all moving over here then?
    would love to run GNR 2006 and can't wait to get back on the road.
  • Hi Little Sandra and Mick :-)

    I have just been reading the reviews of the GNR. And it has bought back all the memories of the pain. And i am running the Cardiff half in 3 weeks. And starting to panic again.

  • God, I wish I could walk at 11 minute mile pace......

    maybe us "slow" people should just give up to keep you "runners" happy. And here was me thinking running / jogging was a sport for all.
  • Hello alisonclair-To me,you are a runner,as soon as you step outside that front door with your runningear on and step off-you are a runner in my eyes.

    Odonut-you,ll do cardiff easy-just keep popping onto here for advice and support.
  • Thanks Mick. I wish some others were so understanding to us newbies. Everyone knows the GNR isn't a race to get PBs, so why do they bother coming. Just spoil it for the rest of us.

    I never did get to sing you that song did I? Was too nervous!
  • Alison, don't get dragged into the "us and them" vibe on this thread, its not worth it, and it's not worth carrying it on! All that matters is that we are running, and one day, we might run a sub 1.45 half marathon or something!!!!

    There is much fun to be had jumping on here, learning tips from others and sharing our progress however slow it may be!

    I understand their frustrations because it must be difficult if you are running for a time etc. Blimey, even i got fed up pushing past people and it was my first one! :-)

  • alison-i bet you,ll sing it now after you,ve done the gnr.
  • Hi All
    O'D - you'll be fine in the cardiff half i am sure, you did really well in the GNR and now you know you can do it there is no stopping you.
    I must admit my inpsiration last night when i went out for a run was totally different, i thouroughly enjoyed myself for the first time in ages! - knowing i can run a half marathon really kept me going!
  • Alison,
    if you have both feet off the ground simultaneously at any point of your locomotion, you are running. (You would be disqualified for this from a walking race)
    Nothing to do with speed.

    You are a runner, you have a medal to prove it too.

    Let the moaners blow their hot air.
  • Found you all,
    We are all runners some people are faster than others thats all. Six months ago I couldnt run a mile on Sunday I ran 13.1 miles. I loved it and want to carry on running and would love to do just 1 marathon then concentrate on 1/2's and 10k's and meeting people I would never I met. Thats what its all about.
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