Brighton Half Marathon 2016

For the third year in a row, I lined up on Sunday to run the Brighton Half Marathon. This has become a favourite of mine, and Sunday did not disappoint. I arrived in Brighton on the Saturday and it was FREEZING. It was the kind of cold, that makes you want to get in bed to warm up and not move!

I stayed in a hotel 5 minutes from the start, so Sunday morning should have been a breeze. I say should, as 3 hours sleep due to being in a room located above a nightclub, meant that I was just a little tired on race morning. I layered up, gloved up, jacket on too, left the hotel and was pleasantly surprised at the temperature. It was perfect for run. Bright, little wind and only a nip in the air, rather than freezing.

I was so lucky as my mum came with me, so I removed some layers and gave them to her. We didn’t need to worry about baggage, so I managed to have a nice cup of tea prior to the start! I left my mum 15 minutes before the start of the race, and made my way to my pen. It was obviously busy, but pretty much hassle free. I had only been in the pen 10 minutes before we were off.

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So very British!!

I knew exactly where my mum would be, so kept to the right side of the course looking for her. As I went over the start line, I spotted that Sally Gunnell had been the starter. She was cheering, waving and wishing everyone good luck. As I approached my mum, I felt myself get emotional. Not sure why, but I just felt very lucky to be running this race, and even though I feel my dad is with me on every run, having my mum there made it just that little bit more special.

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In action #brightonhalf

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I wasn’t too sure how to approach this race. I didn’t think I was fast enough to PB, but wasn’t sure I would be happy plodding round. I decided to just go with it and see what happened. When mile 1 clocked up as 9:41 I thought it felt pretty comfortable, so I’d just stick at that pace. Mile 2 passed and I knew that mile 3 and 4 was going up hill, so just got my head down and worked hard. When I saw that these miles were 9:06 and 9:05 I started to think about a sub 2. I was convinced I could pick up time on the down hill and I will still feeling comfortable. All was good, until mile 8 became quite congested. There were road works going on in Brighton, and the course had been moved over slightly from previous years, and one traffic lane just wasn’t enough room. I was constantly checking my step and weaving to get by people. My pace dropped, but I just thought keep pushing and then it will open up again around mile 10. I thought that I could push on from there. When I reached the turn around and knew I was on the homeward stretch, I tried to pick up the pace, but it just didn’t happen. I knew it was slipping, but I kept thinking, if I can clock 12 miles by 1 hour 50 I can do this. When my watch read 1:52 at 12 miles, my chance had gone, but it still didn’t stop me gritting my teeth and giving it everything. The last mile ended up being my fastest of the entire run, which I was happy with. I finished in a time of 2:02:11. One minute, 39 seconds off my PB, but it was the fastest half I have run in the last 5 years, so I was thrilled.

I love running by the sea, I love running an out and back (watching the front-runners takes my mind off the fact I’m running!) and I really love the Brighton Half Marathon. The organisation is spot on, the volunteers are great and to top it off this year, we got a great Brooks finishers T-shirt too!Β It’s not 3 in a row, and I really hope I can make it 4.

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A good quality Brooks race T-shirt

When I was in Scotland, I picked up a new gel. I had seen people mention Torq on the Run Mummy Run page, so when I tried the raspberry ripple flavour it was lovely. I had one at 6 miles and one a 10 miles and they were nice. I am going to trial them again on this weeks long run and then I’ll give you my full review. But so far, so good.

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Yummy raspberry ripple flavour

Sunday saw me also share my fundraising page, so just incase you are interested www.virginmoneygiving.com/ruthwebb10

Which is your favourite half marathon?Β 

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