There is no photographic evidence of the finish, because I was too tired to lift my arms above my head to take a selfie. Finished Cambridge Half Marathon today in a chip time of 2:21:42 which is Not Exactly Speedy, but Pretty Acceptable. Bearing in mind my all-time PB was 2:04 and that was when I was two and a bit stones lighter and five years younger, and I was running 6-10 miles regularly – I don’t think it is too bad. I have really struggled to find time to run for more than 30 or 40 minutes this term. The downside of being a vicar-in-training is that Sunday mornings are no longer available for a long run… and I now live too far away from my parents to be able to run ten miles and have Sunday lunch with them. Mum’s roast chicken was always a good incentive 8 miles into a 10 miler.
The course around Cambridge has the advantage of taking you past some very scenic parts. However, it’s pretty twisty and narrow in places, making it hard to keep a consistent pace when you are running with the ‘run two abreast and have a chat’ kind of crowd. And it’s two laps. So I’m not sure how much I liked it on the second lap! It was quite fun running part of my normal commute to lectures, though. And the sun was a mixed blessing – it made it cheerful, but much warmer than I had expected. What I really hated was the finish – getting on to Victoria Avenue knowing I still had a mile to go, but being able to see and hear the finish, was tough. I knew there was a lot of zig-zagging, but it was a bit soul destroying.
It was great having Viv here and running with her again, I have missed that a lot. Even if we didn’t stay together after the first three miles… The crowd was encouraging, and the samba band was lovely… And I probably would apply to run this again next year, if I get a better routine of term-time running and energy. It’s hard to say.
I have always found the analogies between running, and ‘running with perseverance the race that is set before us’ as the Christian life. I don’t want to lose the actual running part of running life. It feels like regular long runs and half marathoning belong to a different life now. I want to keep running; I know it keeps me fit and sane in times of stress and runs are going to be a key part of my revision timetable next term. But perhaps I need to think carefully about what is achievable in the long run (pun intended).
Anyway, here are the split times from today. I’m pleased with the first 10k, actually, wasn’t expecting to be as close as all that to 10 minute miles. It is good to know that that is still my general comfortable running pace. But my long standing inability to run negative splits rears its head again…
1 (actually no idea. Had Runkeeper going for ages before the start. It said 15:29, my watch says 11:41)