Marathon Running and Race Support
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BeachyHead Marathon 2017

BeachyHead Marathon 2017

Where to start? 4am the time I woke up? 5.30am the time I had to get out of bed!

Yes it was an early start the family wanted to come down and support me so I tried to get everything prepared the night before and planned to leave the house at 6.30am, but told them we needed to leave at 6.15am! To my amazement, we actually left at 6.15am. It take's about 1hr 30minutes drive down to Eastbourne so we got there with a good time and could see plenty of runners milling about already.

I went and got my number and timing cheap and by the time I had put my tag on and pinned my number to my shirt, my friend and fellow runner turned up (we where drinking buddies before we found this exercise lark!)

The family went and found a position to cheer us on, while James and I found the cafeteria area which not only had small toilet queue also was nice and warm.

Bag drop was easy and to the start line. This is where met up with the rest of the runners we knew one who was going to go for it so we said our good bye and good lucks he moved up to the runner section (we stayed in the joggers section)

The atmosphere felt great with the experienced runners laughing at us newbies, I still felt pretty confident. Knowing I was going to more or less power walk up the hills and run down the hills and along the flats (there was none).

So countdown was begun and we were off moving forward to the start line and the steep first hill that awaited us. As we crossed the line we didn't even start running as up the hill we went. This must be the slowest start to any race anywhere!

As James and I started to climb and climb and climb the wind picked up but the sky's where blue and the sun was shinning could not ask for better weather. The scenery was stunning all around the course, and no photo would do it justice.

The water/food stations where enough not as plentiful as road race but this was all off road, and there was plenty of marshall's all along the course always offering a cheer and a great encouragement. The water stations had plenty of water (in cups) and mini mars bars.

The ground was pretty good especially after alot of rain the week before, with a few muddy parts but I think my new hybrid's where the correct choice.

At about half way I did start to feel my legs getting more tired but with walking up the hills they were getting rest.

We kept hearing that the first half was the easy bit it's the second half that's hard. Now we had been up so pretty big steep hills and knowing the rest of the course iI failed to believe them as I could see we were not far off Cuckmere haven which is pretty flat and then it's just along the seven sisters and they are not so high!

At I think the 17 mile mark was the big food station, it had a band, Mars bars, differently flavored squash, sausage rolls, hot cross buns, some sort of cake (it didn't taste of anything to me) James and I fueled and spoke to other runs who explained the steps are not so far and then its the seven sisters.

So off we went and it was just 19 mile mark my race was had issues -

It was a short sharp downhill run which I was galloping down and then all of a sudden my left knee let out a big oh no you don't. I slowed and told James to carry on as my knee has gone and I will stretch it out at the bottom we wished our good lucks and off he went. At the bottom of the hill was the first set of steps, i did a few stretches and pulls and felt a lot better. I climbed the steps and felt ok, at the top i carried on running a bit a lot slower pace as I could feel it still wasn't right but figured I could carry on. The second hard set of steps was fine and in fact, I thought they would be a lot harder than they were.

But it was any kind of downhill that my knee hated really really hated and had to walk down any downhill at really gently.

So the seven sisters, yea they are not very high but blimey they are steep going up and down! As I was climbing one I remembered the photo I posted on this forum wishing everyone a good luck, it was like that but more grass! These were hard hills and for me even harder downhills i was overtaking people on the uphill but they would fly past me on the downhill.

For those last 10km's I was determined to finish, and I did but it was not a pretty site. as i walked across the line, I accepted my medal and felt very emotional more then when I completed my first marathon.

My friend James finished in 5hrs 19minutes although I wouldn't have kept up with him in the final stages I am sure that I could have got in between 5hrs 30-40minutes if my knee hadn't gone. But I finally hobbled across the line in 6hrs 16minutes.

I was asked would I do it again I said no way am I doing that again, I don't want to do any marathon's again. (she pointed out I am signed up for Brighton next year)

Then today is a new day and I saw they posted about early bird entries........well I do feel like I have unfinished business.

To sum up beachy head marathon it's brutal very brutal, if the weather was raining then can imagine this would be even harder. But then for me, the sun was shining and the scenery was breathtaking. I would recommend this (if it's a nice sunny day)

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Glad enjoyed most of it. Look after your knee, won’t you?

There’s no way I’ll ever manage a marathon, but I would dearly love to know if I can run up that first hill! So I might make the trip over there and give it a whirl one day when the weather is dry.

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Thank you, I am not sure what to do about my knee yet. It feels fine walking about today but not tried running on it yet. Might give it a week and do a slow parkrun next week it's a flat course so it is a good judge.

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Sounds like a sensible plan.

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Wow I am exhausted just reading your epic journey! That sounds like mega tough stuff so you did a fantastic job. It is a shame about the knee and hopefully that will be on the mend soon. Rest up and plan your next adventure!

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Hopefully the knee will be better with a bit of rest and not out for 6 months like was after my last marathon! Maybe i should just stick to half's and below....

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Phew! Great report!! So sorry to hear about your silly knee, I'm sure it'll be fine though you know. Brighton here we come!!!!

Since it's only £36 for early bird entries, I reckon it might be worth getting a place for Beachy next year, and if the weather's too rubbish, well it was only £36. Or is that naughty? :)

Well done!!!!

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I hope my knee will be fine just a bit of rest, although I am little thinking maybe I should go for a little slow 2km tomorrow to see how it feels, maybe!

£36 is that all, such temptation and i read this tweet -

We should certainly look into whether we could have a 'fizz stop' at the High and Over! Or a #SevenSisters Gin stop at Beachy Head?

From the vineyard that the marathon run's around, a Gin Stop! it will be a full out sprint in case they run out!

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Gosh, I would have a G&T on Beachy Head, that would be amazing!

How was the 2k?

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Tomorrow hasn't finished yet :)

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:D

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knee felt fine when i went out at lunch :)

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Great news!

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Yep but still going to take a bit easy this week, maybe cycling depending on weather and parkrun on saturday.

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Very wise!

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oh well no doubt i will do something unwise !

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Amazing race report and an amazing achievement - really massive congratulations on completing a real 'toughie'!!👏👏🥇👏 I am still in awe of ANY marathon but especially this one (I have a friend who did it a few years ago and I am still in awe of her!) Rest up well and I hope your knee settles soon. It has to - it sounds as though there may be a few more marathon's in you yet!😀

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Yep it was very tough alot more then i thought it would be, more training to be had! once that knee is better!

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Well done! That sounded very tough indeed! Shame about your knee but you never know how these things will pan out do you. I think on the steep downhills your kneecap can slide too far forward. Hopefully it will be fine after a rest 🙂👍🏅✔️

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kneecap sliding about doesn't sound very nice! not sure i want to run a downhill any more.

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Congratulation on completing such a tough race!

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thank you! it was only a 1000meters of elevation

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wow Sounds great Ben, i have a friend from over here who did it too but he's done it a few times and still says its a really hard one, so much admiration to you and i'm sure by the sound of it you'll be back! congratulations ! :)

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yes i am sure i will be back, maybe you can join us :)

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Sounds like a beautiful, but very hard race. You did well Ben, and kudos for having the stamina to get through it. I hope you give your knee time to recover fully with only some gentle exercise while it aches - we want to read your report from when you finally counter this brutal course :)

Congratulations, very well done that man!

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Thank you very much, I will no doubt be back next year.

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wow, huge well done for persevering and thats still a good time!!!! Its really hilly!!!

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no its, not a good time :) which means I have to go back and get a good time!

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I am just floored reading marathon reports like these. Huge respect to you for seeing it through despite the hills and your knee giving in. I hope it's healing up ok.

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thank you, the knee felt fine when i went for a little 2km run to the shop

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Wow, amazing achievement! Sounds extremely tough, so extra well done 😊 hope your knee improves soon

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thank you, my knee feels fine thank you now.

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That sounds so tough! Huge congrats for finishing with a sore knee. I hope it's going to be okay. Rest and recovery... while you plan the next one :)

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The knee is feeling fine although maybe i should rest it a bit more.

Already planning next one, Brighton Marathon and then maybe a couple of Sprint Tri's or a half Iron man.

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