Today was the first ever Cambridge half marathon. I really enjoyed it but there are always buts! We had been advised to get there early i.e. by eight. This was an hour before the race start and I am sure that this was because there was a distinct lack of loos. We arrived nice and early using the park and ride system that was well organised with lots of buses all ready to go. We then ended up queuing for over half an hour for the toilets. There were simply not enough as people were still queuing as the race started. We were lucky and just had time to give our bags to a nice friend who was running in a relay team and get to the start.
We were right at the back but didn’t worry trying to push through the crowds to get to our expected time place. This turned out to be a bit of a mistake as the first few miles was very narrow and it was hard to get into any rhythm as you had to keep slowing down and try to dodge past people. Once I very nearly fell over a bollard but managed to save myself. I was not so lucky a bit later on when I fell over a ramp (or speed bump) falling heavily onto my knees and hands. I have to say that some people were very kind and stopped to check that I was ok but I got up intent on wasting very little time! The crowd nearby were very kind as they gave a loud cheer and encouraged me as I went past.
As we got into the race things did even out and I was able to get into a rhythm. The route itself was quite nice going past some of the picturesque areas of Cambridge. It was just a bit twisty and narrow in places.
The route was loopy through the city until the last 3 miles where it ran out along the river. This bit seemed to go on forever but was luckily shorter on the return than outgoing. I did manage to do a bit of a sprint at the end. The text later told me that I did it in 2hrs mins. I am quite pleased with this time – especially as I can take a bit of time off that to account for the slow start. (That is allowed isn’t it?)
Overall it was a well organised event with plenty of marshalls ensuring you didn’t get lost. There did need to be more toilets and the queue for baggage was slow but I would do it again – and hope to do so next year. The best bit however is this:
It is the biggest medal I have got and I am proud to have it.
As for my knees, I came home and soaked them in the bath. They are both bruised and grazed. My right one is quite stiff and I am hoping that there is no real damage other than swelling and bruising. It didn’t hurt when I was running so it can’t be that bad can it?
Now looking for the next one….