Oh I do like to be beside the seaside.....Me and my medal!
Suited and booted.....the new way to run, or so it seems. Running back to the club house with Liz on Friday evening we were confronted by a young man running full tilt, in a suit! I giggled and commented to Liz that it may be the new way to run! Of course, I didn't actually think he was out for a run but he showed no signs of slowing down as we carried on up the road so maybe it is a new fad, who knows! I'd been trying to convince Liz that the upcoming half marathon she had agreed to 'because there was a number going spare' would all work out fine providing she got the idea into her head, since that is half the battle, and it reminded me of the times I have done exactly the same. It is rather daunting when you find yourself on the start line of race you hadn't planned to do, it feels a little like an accident! By and large though it's always turned out fine for me in the so I was confident I had spoken from experience and Liz would be fine.
Thankfully I was still looking forward to said half marathon, thoughts of travelling to the seaside always seem to over shadow the fact that I have, at some point, got to undertake a race, the real reason I am there! 35 of us met to board the coach and there was certainly an air of excitement, despite the fact that we had had a very late night phone call to inform us that in fact the coach we were travelling on had suffered a breakdown and we would now have to travel on two separate coaches. After a stop half way we arrived in Bridlington - way ahead of time allowing us to visit the leisure centre and get ourselves a locker and then watch the junior run ahead of our own race. After a substantial warm up there we were on the start line. The gun sounded and we were off! My plan? Well I had one, for a change, all thanks to my picking up a pace band at the Great North Run. I knew if I could get under the 5k and 10k targets we had set in Newcastle I could better my time of 2:10. It's always a gamble whether you go off too fast and burn out. At mile 2 I looked at my watch, 17 minutes, a little too fast I thought and slowed slightly, mile three 25.51, well under the 35 minute target for 2:10, I felt ok so kept going. I didn't look at my watch again until I was alongside the 6 mile marker, 51 minutes, by now I was quite excited and feeling quite good. I didn't have any other targets and so decided to go on how I felt. Although quite sunny, it was very breezy which proved to be perfect. A while after the 9 mile marker I started to feel sick and my legs felt as though I had nothing in them, I made a split decision to listen to my breathing, sipped at my water and managed to keep going without getting in a panic. I never saw the 11 mile marker but presume by the time I hit it I was feeling much better. Running past the entrance to 'Sewerby Hall & Gardens' I knew we wouldn't be too much longer before we entered said grounds which ultimately lead to the cliff tops and down to the sea front. I wasn't disappointed - before I knew it we were running past pens of rare breed sheep, llamas etc and headlong at their visitors! Running along the cliff tops was quite tough, the breeze had turned into a wind and was doing it's utmost to hold us back, it was literally a fight to keep moving forward. Down the steep slope to the seafront, it was a site for sore eyes, although quite a distance to the finish, the front was lined with people, I glanced at my watch 1:55, my heart missed a beat and jumped for joy, I was nearly at the line, under two hours, I was ecstatic! I was so thankful that it had all gone to plan even if it was accidentally on purpose! The official times aren't yet out but my watch read 1:56 so I'm hoping I wasn't too far out, either way I've smashed my 2:02 half marathon PB adding yet another distance PB to this year's race portfolio!
A shower, a trip to the local Weatherspoons, followed by a paddle in the sea and an ice cream cone to top off a really fab day!