I am beginning to think half marathon distance is not my thing.
A year after my first half (and a few in between) I had decided that I would take part in the Pleshy half marathon. I was told it was a nice course and it was not a million miles away from home. So I signed up.
In the weeks leading up to the half I had run but it was not proper training (in my view) for a half. It was sporadic to say the least and the training had no real substance to it. Other things had got in the way of running since going back to work after the summer and a few parkruns and bits here and there was not going to cut it.
This and a knee niggle was enough to go into the half marathon weekend with doubts, I almost bailed but on the morning I put my kit on and left to go.
Weather was mild to start with and was warming up quickly for the race start.
Although I had decided to now take part I also decided I wasn’t going to beat myself up over times or finish places, my role today was to just get round and finish it. I did not want a DNS or a DNF against my name.
There was many from my second club in attendance and after the team photos we made our way to the start. Many around me were nervous, for them it was their first half or they were still new to the distance, I felt nervous and very much under prepared.
At the off I knew I would get round but at this point no clue of time, I decided to walk run. The first mile I had gone out (yet again) too fast and this was rather annoying.
Myself and a mate from the club fell into step side by side and this great company made up for the fact that music i.e. headphones was not allowed at this event. My headphones are bone conduction, I can hear everything around me and allowed by EA so this rule is an annoyance to say the least but I also understand the safety aspect. Maybe clubs need to be more up to date with their regulations but a side issue. We spent the time encouraging each other, admiring the Essex countryside and taking comfort that we were out there doing it.
The morning was becoming very warm and my fingers had really swollen up, this is worrying as it happens a fair bit and can hurt. I find I have issues gripping and this was the case when trying to hold onto a water bottle. Cross with myself as I had not taken my salt tablets or managed my water intake batter, another thing to rectify along with my training plans.
We both completed the 13.1 in the 3 hours something, not the best time in the world but we did it and was in one piece unlike a poor team mate who had hurtled towards the finish line and collapsed. Our job was done, t-shirt and medal collected.
I would do this half again, if I am motivated to train for the distance. Lovely event in a lovely part of the county and super supportive volunteers.
Before I contemplate this distance again I need to look at my training and decide if I should be doing these miles or go for something shorter and then train accordingly. I also then need to look at nutrition and feul for the actual event itself.
I am not down about this half but it has made me take stock of my running life and how I need to be more serious about some of the events I take part in and how to best train.