Oh dear, I did it again. ANOTHER half marathon without training properly! Last time I had a good excuse, this time I had many excuses, they just weren’t very good.
I was a lot more relaxed about the Sleaford half than the Norwich half. Firstly, having run 13.1 miles exactly 3 months previously I knew I could do it. I’m fitter now than I was then – a bit of cycling and roller derby practice is all I’ve done, but it’s better than the opiates and lethargy which I used as prep for the Norwich half! Secondly I’d heard that Lincolnshire is a pretty flat county so I wouldn’t have to put up with anything like that dastardly mile 12 hill I had last year. Thirdly, I’m a much more confident person 3 months on. If I’d have got half way round and though “bugger this, I want a cuppa” then my plan was to just quit.
So, Jelly Babies in hand, brother-in-law by my side, we trudged off to RAF Cranwell for what would be a record breaking turnout to the Sleaford Half. It was horribly cold and windy, and there were some pretty dark clouds ahead as we set off, running past the obstacle course on our way out of the base. Just after mile one we set off on a 10 mile circle the would repeat that first section at the end, so I dumped my hoody and got going.
There was a horrible section to start with and I felt like it would never end. Muddy tracks made by huge tractor tyres. My delicate ankles were not made for that sort of running so I was grateful for the arrival of the road just after mile 3.
The course was so windy. It felt like running uphill with kids attached to each leg. I identified a couple of people running at a similar pace to me, they were aiming for a 2:20 – 2:30 finish which seemed about perfect. Ruari (my brother-in-law) left me at about mile 7 to finish his first ever half marathon in a fantastic 2:08! I think I must have been running a slightly different course as I was hampered by all the mountains I had to run up.
Still, I pushed on and cam past the finish at about 2:28, a couple of minutes faster than last time.
Today I am sore. And I am never running again! (Until next time, of course.)