Another week, another race report, it’s like old times!
Last weekend I ran another half marathon, another one organised by Perseverance Events who also organised Worthing Half, this time it was Run The Streets Kingston Half Marathon.
Just like Worthing this had a slightly bamboozling race map, but having spent many happy lunch times running around Kingston and Surbiton I was undeterred by the laps as I knew most of the route like the back of my hand anyway.
The same weekend last year I was at Brighton Half blasting a PB, this year I’m not in the same form but I was hoping to beat my time from Worthing because I’d had a taper of sorts for the week approaching Kingston…a week of skiing…
Goggle marks galore
The Run the Streets Kingston course is made up of two loops. A: Surbiton Loop, B: Ham Loop and the race goes like this:
The first loop went by so quickly, I caught up and passed a pacer and kept another in my line of sight. I got a boost from seeing Emma. I’d completely forgotten she was coming to cheer and her presence put a huge smile on my face.
The second loop seemed quick too, the kms were ticking off my garmin quickly and the half way point came around quickly. I was pushing myself so I wasn’t able to chat to people, but because of the out and back nature of this section I was able to see the front runners and my friend Tracy who was also running.
My old Runch route took me up through Kingston and around the bandstand on the way to Ham, and I’m familiar with this section of the Thames Path because of Kingston parkrun. I’d rationalised in my mind that the loops were 5k ish and in my running brain haze also rationalised that this meant I would be out of ham by 15km (5×4 = 20 and I’d ignored the extra) so when I saw the 15km marker and we were still running AWAY from Kingston my heart sunk. Add to this the fact the twists and turns in Ham meant I’d lost sight of the pacers. My mood lowered and I think my pace slowed.
When I realised that the longer Ham loop resulted in 4km to go once we passed Kingston Bridge my heart soared – 4km of pushing to go, 2km to Surbiton and 2km back again along a road I’ve run a dozen times. This seemed very achievable. A shoulder wrenching high five from David on my way through town (sort of) helped and I gritted my teeth through the last section, not daring to look at my watch. I huffed and puffed my way down the finish funnel, red in the face, gurning and caught sight of of the clock. Faster than Worthing. WOW! My eyes welled up, the pushing caught up with me and I almost (almost) buckled. One deep breath, a duck to receive my medal and I was pushing through the crowds to find David.
It may seem silly, but since my injury last year this was the first time I’ve felt like my old legs are back. My PB times don’t seem quite so far out of reach and perhaps Barcelona wasn’t a fluke. *chin wobble* Enough emotions for today.
Each loop starts and ends in Kingston town centre which makes it great for spectators. They can sit in a coffee shop and jump out when they think you are coming! David opted for Local Hero.
We received pretty super Whole Foods goody bags, my favourite treat being a chocolate covered marshmallow. The medal was great and ending in central Kingston at 11am on a Sunday was great for hitting the shops/brunch.
Thanks again to Perseverance Events for another well organised half.
What’s your next Half?