Sunday 3 March 2013

First race of the year!

Well it went pretty well. I did the Eastbourne Half Marathon for the first time last year when I ran my Half PB and enjoyed it so much I decided to run it again. This year though, it's part of my marathon training.

I really couldn't decide how to approach the race - should it be a long training run at slow marathon training pace? Or at marathon goal pace (whatever that is, I'm not sure)? Or should I just race it and try to get a good time?

I never really made my mind up, but realistically I knew that I'd find it very difficult, once in the race, to run at a slow pace. So I tried to keep around 9 min miles, thinking that would be around 2 hours - not quite a PB but a good racing effort.

This course includes a very steep hill around miles 2-3, which is followed by a long enjoyable downhill, then flat along the seafront. So pacing cannot really be consistent for that first stretch. Today was also very windy, with a headwind from about 4.5 miles to the 8 mile mark.

Saw a photographer I know!
Anyway, I finished in 1 hour 59 min 23 seconds - just 45 seconds slower than last year! I'm going to put that down to the wind and my marathon-specific training...

I forgot to switch my Garmin on for the first minute or so (duh), but according to the stats I did record, I ran a great negative split of a race. It went like this:

Mile 1 - 9.08
Mile 2 - 9.04
Mile 3 - 9.38
Mile 4 - 9.39 (the steep hill was between these miles)
Mile 5 - 8.13 (downhill!)
Mile 6 - 8.56
Mile 7 - 9.10
Mile 8 - 9.13
Mile 9 - 8.43 (out of the headwind)
Mile 10 - 8.51
Mile 11 - 8.58
Mile 12 - 8.46
Mile 13 - 8.34
0.1 - 50 seconds

I'm quite pleased with those numbers, and indeed amazed about the last 2 miles as I started to feel really weak at that point. I felt strong until the 11 mile marker, and then just after that I suddenly felt really tired. I wasn't expecting it and had to push myself on, but I did manage to sprint across the finish line - yay!

This doesn't tell me anything about the marathon, other than that I won't be able to run it at 8.59 min/mile pace (which I definitely already knew). I enjoyed it though, and it's made me think that later in the year, when I've recovered from all this longer running, I should find a Half to target, and aim for a new PB.
My supporters


  1. CONGRATS on the race! Fantastic time and veeery impressive last couple miles!

  2. Nice race report! I ran my 2nd half (last May) in almost that EXACT same time, giving me a PR of about 7 minutes from my first half, which was the year prior. I thought I would DIE! That is an awesome pace! I hope your recovery goes well!

  3. That's a really well run race. To be able to negative split like that shows that your marathon training is well on track. It'd be interesting to see just how fast you could go if you'd raced. Congratulations!

  4. WOOHOO! Very nice run and with smiles to boot! Considering how unsure you were at the start of marathon training, it's especially nice to see everything coming together so well.

  5. Look at those mile times in the second half. Well done! And you wanted to be around two hours! You are good girl! You will kill a half you target.

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  7. Good report, great negative splits and a smashing picture of you and your supporters. Well done Liz.