Friday, October 7, 2011

Windsor Half Marathon 2011

I've run the Windsor Half a few times now, drawn into it as there's an inter-company challenge race for the Construction Industry. I threw in a speculative entry in February and forgot about it

In August - having been doing nothing more than Tuesday and Thursday training sessions all year - I thought I'd better do something about the forthcoming distance and set about a couple of 8mile weekend runs in rather unspectacular times. I resigned myself to forfeiting my entry...until everyone down the track on the Thursday before the race bullied me into running!

So, with insufficient training, but with positive vibes from the club and lots of upbeat music in my iPod I set off!

If the photo uploads properly, that's me one mile in with most of the first hill behind me. I knew there was a bigger hill at 8miles and another at 10 - but hills just seemed to keep coming this year - far more than I remembered! But each time I just cranked up the music and kept pushing - Boulevard of Broken Dreams, Unfinished Sympathy and Numb by Linkin Park seemed to keep me going when I really needed it.

The course is a small loop followed by a larger loop - all within Windsor Great Park and always seems to be a great weekend for weather, so there's lots of supporters out and about. The final mile is dead-straight with Windsor Castle in the distance, but has a habit of catching people out. You come round the corner at the top of the hill and see the finish and people start sprinting...but then you go into a dip and lose sight of the finish and it seems the longest mile ever!

But the crowds get deeper towards the finish line and everyone is cheering and the commentator is calling out as many names and numbers as possible and it all helps to get you over the line. And in my case - a new PB of 1:33:11 :-)

I wouldn't entirely recommend my method of preparing for a Half - putting a few more miles in the legs before the race would be sensible! But if I can do that time off Tuesday's and Thursday's only then Jon is obviously doing something right with his training regime.

So, my 1:30 target is still out there. Now I need to find another half to target it on, and prepare properly for a change....


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