One of my aims for 2010 has been to get a PB in the half marathon - so while many other CAACers were in Glasgow, I headed south to England, to take part in the Wolverhampton Half Marathon. The reason for me choosing this race is that I have family who live there, and so I combined a visit to see them, with the half marathon, which quite conveniently followed many of the roads I am used to running along while down there.
I was feeling confident after last weekend's 10k in Perth and so decided to aim for around 1hr35 as a good target. The race started nice and early at 9:15am. A 19.5km cycle race went off first, then the marathon relay runners, and then the marathon and half marathon runners. There were no start pens so I decided to get as close to the front as I could. That way I wouldn't get boxed in and I could keep an eye on my position. I felt good over the first few miles and did them in just over 7minutes. I was going at a slightly faster pace than I'd planned, but I felt good. The route was good, fairly flat, on closed roads and some even on cycle paths and pedestrian areas. I had the added bonus of having a family fan club at mile 9, which was the ideal boost at this point. I could see my grandparents, Auntie Jan, and Joyce and Reg on the corner and their cheers were very welcome!! I wasn't sure what position I was in at that point, but I'd overtaken a few girls, so thought I must be quite high up. I overtook another at mile 11. One girl was right on my shouldler with only 1.5 miles to go, so I picked up the pace and lost her on a small hill. Someone shouted to me to say I was in second, but third was just behind, so with 400m to go I just went for it. I crossed the line in second place in a new PB of 1hr34:39. Really pleased!!! Felt good all the way round and feel like I have more in me for a half marathon. A great race, and even better being presented with my prize...by the Mayor of Wolverhampton no less ;-). I can safely say I was the only person in a Scottish club vest, and the guy on the loud speaker gave up trying to pronounce Corstorphine which made me laugh!
A good fast course, nice medal, t-shirt, and a Gregg's goodie bag! What more could I want!