Sunday 18th September saw the 3rd annual half marathon in my birth town of Warrington. This one has been on the radar for me since it was established but this year is the first time I’ve been available to run it and I’ve been missing out. Maybe I’m biased but this is a great event with and considering it’s ran on the same day as the Great North run it still manages to produce a mass turn out with an estimated over 2000 runners and attracts some quality too.
This year it was great to see a Warrington 1,2 and 3 in the fastest male with 20 year old Daniel Cliff taking the win in 1 hour 9 minutes. It got even better for the hometown with Louise Blizzard from Fearnhead taking 1st place in the woman’s with a time of 1 hour 22.
It’s a tough start to the race undulating through the back lanes of Warrington up to Stretton peaking at a little over 300ft at 7 miles before you turn for home cutting through a few narrow off-road trails. With support on almost every corner and a well marshalled and organised route they’ve got it right here with a great event that will be around for a long time. Also it was great to finish with one lap of the track on Victoria Park where the many spectators roared you home. A nice shinny medal for the collection and a good quality running t-shirt in the goody bag was a nice touch.
For me it was an opportunity to test the legs before Liverpool Marathon. It definitely wasn’t going to be a PB day as my game plan was not to push it too hard and to go at a comfortable pace keeping my heart rate steady and mentally breaking down the course into sections staying focused and treating it like a marathon working on my lessons learnt from London and preparing me for Liverpool. Time wasn’t important which is unusual for me as I’m always spending hours working out potential times and different paces and looking for what I considered to be “respectable times”.
I learnt a lot from my first Marathon and didn’t achieve what I wanted as I got too ahead of myself and thought I respected the distance but really had no clue. I went off far too quickly aiming for a time and although going well up until mile 21 I paid for my naivety and inexperience for the remaining worst 5 miles of my life.
I’m more than happy with the way this race panned out and went to plan. I felt in control and comfortable running and unlike in recent weeks didn’t feel the need to stop. It’s giving a boost ahead of Liverpool and got me back on track as long as I stay disciplined and focused during Liverpool Marathon I should be able to make amends for London.
13.17miles 01:47:35 Avg pace 8:10 Avg HR 171bpm max HR 178bpm Total ascent 1128ft