My first standalone half marathon since March, three weeks after my first half ironman. I signed up for this due to the close-to-home location but forgot to hire a car and had to take a train then a taxi.
Matt came with me, and set off to a pub in Litlington where he’d been promised a good vantage point and discounted bacon rolls.
I eyed up the field. I was worried about coming last and there were a lot of people in club vests. Matt thought I was silly for worrying about coming last and that it had never crossed his mind when racing but I suppose I’m a realist about my running skills. Eventually I spotted some people I thought I might be faster than (as ever, this prediction was totally wrong).
There was an announcement over a loudspeaker that I didn’t hear and we were off. The start of any race is annoying as people struggle to find their pace, and there’s a lot of jostling. I was annoyed to find that my pace was exactly the same as a man who’d had a lot of curry the night before.
Passing through Litlington I gave Matt a wave and we set off on a loop through some villages. Although it’s not far from home I don’t know the area well and rarely knew where I was.
At 9km I suddenly felt a sharp and really uncomfortable pain above my right hip – an actual pain in the backside. I stopped to stretch and prodded it a little, but I spent the rest of the race alternately clutching my bum and trying to drag myself forward at ever-slower speeds.
All the marshals were helpful, asking if I was okay, but I decided I wanted to finish the stupid race and kept going. Matt was lurking 4km from the end and it was nice to see him – he took a short cut to the end so he was able to see me overtake a lady who’d overtaken me several times whenever my shuffling had slowed down too much. I bet she thought I was a moron.
I drank my “free” finisher’s bottle of powerade sitting on the grass, before heading off to have a shower in the school sports centre. It was fantastic to shower although it would have been better had the showers not been operated by poltergeists. My friend Hannah came to pick us up and we went to the pub, where I ate ALL THE THINGS – this is the best thing about running.