We travelled up to Northumberland on the Friday night after work. We decided to camp at The Railway Inn Campsite in Acklington. The campsite was a good choice as it was 4 miles away from the coast, and a half an hour drive to the race. They also had an onsite pub serving excellent food and local ales.
Day before the race
We spent the Saturday walking around Amble, and the beach at Almouth. I probably did a little more than I should have. However it was meant to be an enjoyable day for the wife and dog too, so I didn’t mind.
Race day breakfast
I did the race food fasted, so all I had pre race was one bottle of Cucumber and Lime KETONE.io by Limited Labs. All I had during the race was water, no gels or Gatorade for me.
The drive over to Rothbury was fine, and I used the post code provided by run nation. However when I got to the destination it did not look like a car park, then I saw people walking up a hill. So I drove up the hill and saw the registration sign. The staff there said I had the right place originally. The car park was down the side road I saw. The car park itself was pretty rustic lets say, however their was ample space which was good. The registration area was well sign posted, and there was plenty of facilities and staff around. The start line was apparently 500 meters away, but it seemed longer.
The race was on open roads, so you had to deal with traffic. Which I have never experienced before at an organised race. However the race was on similar country roads that I train on, so it wasn’t a problem. Plus there were plenty of signs, warning cars that pesky runners were about. The race was described as flat for the first half and undulating on the second half. This was underplaying it a little in my eyes. I would describe it as undulating and then pretty hilly. There were two hills of note that were very testing. That being said, the scenery was great. It is a really beautiful part of the county.
Once finished the medal and t-shirt were of good quality. Plus there was plenty of staff around, giving out water etc.
An enjoyable and well organised event.
Even though my time was 8 minutes slower than the Edinburgh Half Marathon, that was largely down to the routes. Edinburgh was very flat, and this was not!
I actually felt I ran this race better, and felt stronger.
Due to the area I train in which resembles the route a little, and perhaps helped by my diet I found that I was really strong on the up hills. Where I would pass a lot of people. However due to my barefoot/sandal running, I was a little inhibited on the downhill’s where I had to take it easy. Especially on the steep downhill’s.
I will rest for a week and move onto my marathon training.
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