Long time no see! I had my third wave of medical school exams and blogging just had to take a step back. Sorry for the lack of warning and not giving you the outcome of the Vitality Run Hackney half marathon after sharing my unfiltered pre-race thoughts sooner but here it is!
Firstly, lets get the numbers out of the way. I completed the race in 02:01:10. So close and yet so far from a PB. As mentioned in my previous post, my accidental Parkrun PB completely messed up with my mojo of running for fun and not to chase a PB. That coupled by the fact that the first question most people asked me when I finished the race was regarding my time, I became disappointed of not getting a PB. I really worked hard during that race. I gave it my all. I ran at a pace where I wouldn’t have been able to talk to someone and I did not give in at any point, I felt strong mentally, unlike during the Bath Half marathon.
What I liked about the race:
*** The bag drop was amazing. I kid you not, it only took me 4 min watch in hand to drop my bag and 1 min to get it back. This is one hell of a performance.
*** As predicted, the crowd support was really great in Hackney. It had a very family ambiance and although I don’t often do training runs in Hackney, it kinda felt like running at home if that makes sense. I am also super grateful for my sister and my friend Audrey for coming to cheer. I forgot the how amazing it is to have people you know coming to cheer and knowing that I would see them is what kept me running strong.
*** Water of bottles with a sports cap. THIS. All the races should have sports bottle, it makes things so much easier and I am more likely to hang on to my water bottle for a bit longer.
*** The last water station. It was pretty close to the finish but it was a warm day and that last water station was a dream come true.
*** The goodie bag. Lots of very nice food in it.
*** The finish area. It was so nice to hang out a bit my the olympic park, stretch on the grass and just chill.
What I didn’t like about the race.
*** It was really difficult to get there in the morning. It was too early for the tube and overground and the buses could not reach the full destination due to some road closure. I have to admit that I was getting a bit stressed as for once I had a bag to drop. As mentioned above, the bag drop was not a problem in the end.
*** I thought that the race was very “angular”. SO many sharp turns. I really did not enjoy that as I thought it got a bit congested at each turn and I was loosing some of my momentum.
*** The scenery was not that special and it was streets upon streets. It was nice when arriving closer to the Olympic park but that’s about it.
Would I do it again?
When I think about how long it took me to get there and how monotone the scenery was, I want to say no. However, I now know that the race organisation is really good and I can therefore leave home a bit later.
I also think that it’s at a great time of the year (early May) and a very good incentive for a spring training regimen. To be fair it was very warm that day but I much prefer this than having to run in the rain (I know that some people will disagree on that). I think it would be a good race to use as part of a long run training, which would make getting there quite efficient!
I have nooooo idea of my future goals for next year but the Vitality Run Hackney has high chances of appearing on my 2016 agenda.
Did you run this race? If so, did you enjoy it?
You can pre-register now for Run Hackney 2016 here.
Disclaimer. I got my race entry for free via Action Pr. All opinions, training and running are my own.