I am pleased to advise that I completed the Tonbridge Half Marathon yesterday in a chip time of 2:03:12.
Having promised myself that I wouldn’t go too fast and would stick to a pace of around 6:00/KM, I duly set off like a bat out of hell and averaged 5:36/KM over the first 7K. At that point I felt pretty good but had a good talk to myself, fully realising that I would run out of gas. Thankfully, I did ease up a bit and throughout a long 8 and a bit K loop, I was fairly consistent at around 5:55/Km. The final section of the race of the race was really tough with very little in the way of flat sections – it was just one hill leading to another hill which took it’s toll on the old legs but I was nonetheless able to maintain a pace of round 5:55/Km right to the end which at that stage was a blessed relief.
The highlight of the race was undoubtedly the village of Leigh which I, and the full field of 1500 runners, passed through twice. It appeared that the entire population was out to offer encouragement as well as water, orange slices, high fives and jelly beans. On the second passing they even added an entire brass band to their number. Amazing.
The low point was that an air ambulance was needed to evacuate one runner who collapsed at around the 19K mark. I can’t find any word on his status on the moment but very much hope that he is OK. On the whole the ambulance crews and paramedics were very busy throughout the event which, I guess, was because it was genuinely hot from about 11am onwards.
One other minor annoyance (actually it is more than that for someone as anal about these things as I am) is that my bleeping Garmin failed to sync yesterday and I can’t find anyway to manually upload an activity from the watch (a 310XT) to GC – if anyone knows how, I would be grateful.
Overall, I loved the event, although, with 270-odd metres of elevation gain, it probably isn’t the wisest choice for a beginner, and I am really pleased with how I ran, even though my legs are really feeling it today.
There were lots of photographers en route so hopefully I might even to be able to get/share a shot or two where I don’t look like a complete spanner
Happy running all.