Yesterday was my 2nd half marathon of 2016.
Two weeks after my first one, where I got a 9 minute PB!
One week after a lap at nuts.
On a Sunday when I’d had a busy week in the gym. I hadn’t done much in terms of resting.
Right up until the starting gun went off I had no idea what I was aiming for other than to get to the finish and get a medal around my neck. I had no plans for my pace or anything!
I’d read that surrey half is notoriously bad for parking anywhere near the start area so my Mum dropped me off about 7.45 before the roads got shut before she headed off to find the place we had planned for her and the boys to see me. I wandered over to the race village making a beeline for the toilets. I spotted Vikki at the Xempo stand and said a quick hello whilst she was getting ready to be the 2.20 pacer before making my way to the toilets. After that I spotted another friend, a fellow OCR runner and had a natter with him for 10 minutes before wandering off to the RMR meet up, it was nice chatting with a few other women who were all there on their own. Although RMR has grown in huge ways and I don’t involve myself as much now its still nice having new faces to chat with before a race.
At about 8.25 I headed for the bag drop and timed it just right as after joining the queue I turned around to spot the queue now weaving its way around the park, about 4 times as long as it had been when I joined the queue. Eventually we meandered into the hall to drop our bags off and then I made my way for one final toilet stop. Thankfully they had put on three separate blocks of portaloos, I tried the first two and they had huge queues so wandered over to the final one I had spotted, much shorter queue! WIN!
After lining up just behind the 2 hour pacer I got nattering to a few people around me about half’s and marathons. And before knew it at promptly 9am we were off. The route took us off through a few residential roads that had a moderate level of support before heading out into more country roads where we saw no one. The route itself was busy and didn’t really spread out until around mile 7/8 which I did find frustrating, you had to be aware of trying to overtake runners incase anyone else was also trying to overtake you! The 5-6 mile stretch had a nice amount of support on the out and back and this was where my Mum and the boys were watching so I got to high 5 them. At this point I had stomach cramps and a stitch but didn’t want to let on I was suffering as I knew mum would worry! I carried on back down and up the hill we had already run down, its nice having an out and back as you can cheer on the slower runners behind you. We turned down a road and soon came across the mile 8 sign. At this point I walked up a hideous railway bridge and turned around before I started running and spotted a fellow Bosher behind me. It turned out to be a friend I’ve had on facebook for a while so we spent the final 5 miles nattering away about all things running! The time flew by and neither of us paid much attention to our niggles.
We saw my Mum and the boys again at about 11.5 miles before reaching the 12 mile marker which was actually at 11.75! This made mile 12 feel looooong but it was nice to spot my friend supporting at the side of the road and we just kept pushing each other on knowing we would soon see that 13 mile sign and could stop!
Eventually we reached that 13 mile sign and the home straight, we picked up a little bit of pace and crossed the line in a respectable 2.12. Seeing as I hadn’t had any particular goals I was pleased with this. Surrey Half do a great medal but theres no tshirt and just a bottle of water, banana and flapjack when you finish. I then wandered over to collect my bag before bumping into another running friend and having a natter and then headed to meet my Mum and off for lunch at my grandparents as they live locally to it which was defo a bonus of this race!
Would I do it again? No! I didn’t like the route, it was way too much narrow country lanes that felt crowded for the first half and then boring unsupported side roads for the second half. I like big races with lots of support. Although on a bigger scale than most its definitely no Brighton!