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Beachy Head Marathon

Sat October 29 2005 Listed by McGoo-Hat
10 Entrants Club PB SB Pred Time WAVA
Buzzard My first marathon,I thought that I was ready but I was very wrong.A fantastic route with beautiful views over Sussex.Dispite hardly being able to walk the Seven Sisters,it will be a must for 2006. Unaffiliated 5:52:18 7:17:00 7:17:00 28.14
deanosaur Larkfield AC 3:29:04 4:10:00 4:10:00 53.94
Ghengis Redhill Distict Royal Mail AC, Striders of Croydon AC 3:49:56 5:08:16 5:00:00 5:08:16 40.55
hairier half Wimbledon Windmilers 3:29:00 4:06:47 4:07:00 50.37
Meldy I will get Pienapper to drag me up a hill this year even if it kills him :-)

No PN hence the time!!   Fabulous day .... nightmare hills! Unaffiliated 5:40:00 5:40:00 7:00:00 6:30:00 35.40
plodding hippo Bloody hell marathon report 2005

Setting the scene-
Dreadful week at work-with lots of stress and too much alcohol
Situation normal then
Precious little running in the 2 weeks since Abingdon-more to do with the head than the legs.
Escaped from work at 3pm on Friday-and caught a lift down to Eastbourne with Lurker and Bobbis.
Soundtrack was Armatrading, Simon and Garfunkel and-The Carpenters
(any idea how appropriate “We’ve only just begun” is to running?)
Lurker informed us that she had no inte tion of runni g a maratho ever-oops!
Arrived at Eastbourne around 8.30pm then out to the pub for a chat and a couple of pints and a fantastic plate of chicken and noodles
Must have been a large portion-I only managed half!
Bed by 11pm-and I slept  like a baby-waking every two hours for a slurp of isotonic.
Forced down some cereal followed by usual pre race loo rituals-then it was a taxi to St Bedes for the start.
You could tell they were going to look after us
Trays of cake circulating with coffee and tea-pity I had no appetite.
Spent the hour pre race catching up with old friends.The walkers had already set off-I was allegedly a jogger.

But there was NO WAY I was running up that first hill.
A short sharp incline and then a long drag left me breathless and dripping at the summit.I though I was supposed to be fit!!!!
I was so upset I forgot to start my garmin for 2 minutes.

I have never started a race with a walk before except for Lyke Wake-and it really didn’t help me at all
I could not be @rsed to jog!
Still-SVT, Meldy ,AJH and I started a bit of plodding at the top of the hill-I even touched 10 minute miles at one point
Now hippos don’t do off road very well and it wasn’t long before I was walking again.
The others sped off into the distance but unsually there were people walking all around me-Im used to being at the back on my own dammit!
Ok-right well lets just try to get in under 6.5 hours-I knew I wouldn’t make sub 6 as Id need 14 minute miles and it wasn’t happening.
Lets see if I can actually enjoy a race

The weather was perfect if a little warm for me
Hit 5 miles in 72 minutes-hm this isn’t really very good is it.
Snoop and Tiger arrived having started late and informed me that they were stopping at pubs at 16 miles and 22 miles
Ok well I might do that myself.
They wanted to get to mile16 by 3 hours-so off they went into the distance.
It got muddy and I struggled
I was dripping with sweat and already feeling thirsty-although I was walking a lot still.
Net to catch me was Windsurfing Susie pacing a friend round
We ran walked together till 8 miles-when I hit my usual bad patch-and Susie disappeared into the distance
Fisrst checkpoint at 8.8 miles and I gulped a cup of squash
No time to stop-it was a pitiful time already-so off I went again

Managed to get into some sort of rhythm and even overtook the odd person with run/walk
Starting to feel lightheaded and unwell-couldn’t put a finger on it.
Caught up with Pink and Aiki who were walking-at about mile 11-12
Had to run past Nicko just after mile 12-he wouldn’t let me walk!
Through a village on road then up another hill-then back on some nice trail
Ahead I spotted a Thanet club vest-and accelerated towards them
The Camelbak of Wine-it must be!
It wasn’t-SHE was ahead
Ho hum
I was never going to catch her
Settled back into a run walk as started overtaking people again
Just before 13 miles-I heard a shout behind me
“Are you going to ignore us then”
The Camelbak lass!
Had a slurp of white wine(it was after midday)-and plodded on.
Half marathon by my Garmin in an embarrassing 3 hours 20 minutes
There were uphills but they weren’t THAT bad although my feet wept at the underfoot terrain(Using 2 bridges ultra blister shoes as I was going to bin them after the run)
Revised my time to under 7 hours
Began to worry about catching my train back home
The idea was that I walk a lot  and try to take I the scenery and actually enjoy myself-but walking felt hard and I really didnt feel good.

The purging of evil humours would have made me feel better normallybut it was the first set of Stairs
I had to stop several times to catch my breath and let my head stop swimming

Miles 16-18 involved some downhill jogs and the second EVIL set of stairs
Met two ladies who were veterns of beachy-and what they had to say didn’t bode well

Thenthere was”the most pointless bit of the course” as I heard one
Marshal say
an uphill an a down-to make up the miles
Tim Rainey phoned me at this point to
 tell me he was in FLM.I was on the uphill bit and couldt speak much
But we hadn’t even started yet

The Seven B!tches loomed
My companion told me there were actually 8 not 7 hills
Oh great
By now I had very little left ad could hardly walk
Still I managed the first long uphill
 pull and walked the very steep
downhill too as I couldn’t trust my buckling legs-they just didn’t seem to want to work
By the third hill id lost it

I was able to walk a few steps uphill then I was dizzy and gasping
Normally im ok onhills walking at least
But I just couldt manage it without stopping every minute hands on thighs.I ony pretended to stretch once-then all dignity was gone and I walked bent hyperventilated and got up the hills that way

I don’t thik the hills were THAT bad-but my body couldn’t take any more and I didn’t know why
An elderly couple out for a stroll o the b!tches(????) tried to engage me in conversation-er leave me alone!

Mile21-and what I thought was the last checkpoint(5 hours 46 minutes-Ive finished by now usually)
No squash

Gulped down 2 cups of water in some disappointment
There was chocolate too-but I couldn’t face it
The hills seemed less bad now andI jogged a 
lttle again and overtook the elderly couple

I could see buildings up ahead and wondered if there was a shop
All I could thik about was a can of full fat Coke
My 3300ml Isotonic was long gone
Checkpoint 4
More lovely tea, and squash
Had left the checkpoint when it hit me
About turn to pick up a fun sized mars bar
Nearly vomitedbut forced it down

And in 10 miutes I was back to 16 –17 miute miling
Even overtakig again
Beachy head was fine
Sure it was a hill but I was strong again
What  FOOL I had been-I have done so many marathons and I didn’t realise id hita wall
But now its about finishing
I don’t care about the time-
Almost went the wrong way followig an outward marker
But then
it was down the steep hill
Walking—no im not going to trust my legs
And a sprint finish on the road
Around 7.20

Post mortem
This is a GREAT race-inclusive of all abilities
Fantastic organisation and yes fantastic views even if I couldn’t appreciate them
As for my performance-well I don’t kow why I even bother training
Back to the drawing board

100 Marathon Club 4:16:46 5:22:56 7:19:48 31.75
Running Postie Excuse language but bloody hell what a tough course.It had everything wind,chalk paths,slippery mud and those hills.Ihave to say the marshalls were superb they supported all the way round even on top of beachy head.ps the sausage rolls,friut cake and hot cross buns superb. pps i enjoyed run,yes really!Well done to all those that completed the course you certainly deserved the medals. Portsmouth Joggers Club 3:38:01 3:49:05 4:15:00 4:12:47 54.75
SoVeryTired Redway Runners 3:47:49 6:10:57 6:00:00 6:10:57 33.14
The Plodder Wonderful run.  I would love to make it in under 6 hours next time so as to qualify for an official time. Victory AC 4:39:17 6:30:00 6:30:00 35.80
Windsurfin' Susie Walked half ran half, ran the last leg twice: 30 miles! Fun! Victory AC 3:15:18 3:41:30 5:55:00 40.20

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