Race Recap // Run Hackney Half Marathon 2015


I completed my second half marathon!

If you're already following me on social media, you'll know that I did Run Hackney Half Marathon the Sunday just passed.

I had been freaking out about the Hackney Half Marathon. My training had gone SO well up until about half way through my training. I made the decision quite late to do Run Hackney rather than my local half marathon, I ended up cutting my training short because of this AND I ended up getting Injured.

I wasn't going to let all the above stop me from running though. I had everything prepared the day before(not the night before ;)), got all my kit ready, wrote a blog post on pre-run preparation, had a pasta meal for dinner and got an early night!

Morning - Pre Race
On the morning of, I was up at 4:45 am, we had an hours travel to the tube station, 40 minutes on the tube and a 15 min walk from the tube to the start so we were up SO early! For breakfast, I had the usual that I have before any race. A toasted Cinnamon and Raisin Bagel topped with PB and Jam and had a Banana for later on(which I didn't end up having).

After arriving at Leyton Tube station, we had a 15 minute walk to the start line, first off, it was NOT 15 minutes, it felt like forever! After me and P arrived, we went to the toilets, which had no queues, wahey! and then dropped off out bag which was pretty straight forward and very quick! The baggage area was sectioned into race numbers and was very organised!

After dropping off bags, we had a look round at all the tents about the place, got our barings and found out where we were going to be starting.
I made the decision to try and go to the toilet once more before the race.. and the queues were MASSIVE! We waited around 15 minutes before P was getting pissed and I ended up leaving the queue.

We said our good lucks to each other and went out separate ways to the starting pens. I took the 2-2:15 starting pen, which at first was pretty empty but it didn't take long for it to fill up.. I think everyone and their mother was aiming to finish in 2-2:15 - It was freakin' PACKED.

The race started on time at 9 am, it took a while before we started moving towards the start line, there was a lot of pushing and shuffling and I was trying to keep the 2:15 pacers in sight.

Miles 1-2
We crossed the start banner, I started my Garmin and I was off! I must admit, it was totally uncomfortable. I hadn't run in almost 2 weeks prior to the race so it took me a while for my legs to adjust plus injury didn't help in the slightest.

The first two miles my legs felt quite heavy and lethargic, I'm pretty sure I was thinking there was NO way I was going to finish it, the sun had come out and I was SO glad to have made the decision to wear a tank rather than a t-shirt. I even wished I'd worn shorts rather than crops(and since I had my calf compression sleeves on, I may as well have been wearing long tights).

I was SO glad for the first water station, my mouth was dry from the heat and the station was rammed, people were colliding and pushing others to get water, I almost had to walk rather than grab and run. I just took small sips as I knew I'd need the toilet if I took a bigger drink, I held onto my bottle for quite a while taking small sips before throwing it to the side of the road.

Miles 3-6
My legs weren't feeling as bad, I'd settled into a nice pace, I just wanted to keep each mile around 10-10:30 min/miles till the finish so was constantly checking my watch, if I was going to fast, I slowed myself. My aim was more to finish than go for a time. I'd completely lost sight of the pacers too, I thought I was pacing for 2:15-ish but they were nowhere to be seen and I definitely hadn't passed them.

I took my first gel at mile 4 and I grabbed another bottle of water at mile 5, it wasn't as crowded this time. Again, I was taking small sips but I was totally starting to feel like I needed to pee!

Miles 7-9
I must admit, I don't pay much attention to surroundings during a race, I found this during the Winter Run too, apparently at mile 7 was Broadway Market.. I didn't see it! At around mile 8, I was starting to feel slow and my legs were feeling SO heavy. 8 miles was my last long run before the half marathon so I sort of expected this but pushed myself not to walk!

Just before the Mile 9 Mark, there was supposedly a Lucozade Station which I was desperately waiting for as I needed the extra energy. Unfortunately, the drinks were either gone or I totally missed them, cause the only Lucozade bottles I saw were thrown to the side of the road. I was pretty bummed!

This was also where I ended up taking my first walk break, my legs were twingeing and I really needed a break. It was only for about a minute and it was enough for me to get some energy back.

Mile 10
Who the F said there were no hills on Run Hackney? There had been quite a few hills already in the race, but like I mentioned, its pretty much a blur so I couldn't tell you what miles they were at, all I can tell you is that they sucked. I thought this was a flat course, that's what I was told!
Photo Courtesey of the Run Hackney FB Page!
At mile 10, there was a pretty good hill.. of which at the top were some pretty amazing people! The Run Dem crew had assembled themselves on top of this hill and were AMAZING! Their support for everyone was incredible and definitely gave me the motivation not to stop and walk! So thanks to them!

Mile 11-12
At this point, I was pretty much dead, I was doubting my ability to finish, my legs were aching, I felt like I couldn't pick them up.This was also the time were I started to get some pretty bad stomach cramps. If you're a runner, you're probably aware of runners trots.. I don't think I need to explain more. I had to keep taking walking breaks out of fear.. HAHA!

P ended up calling me at around mile 12 too. I had deleted my ring tone from my music library that morning so it didn't play during the race. when I first heard it, I'm pretty sure I shouted something about how I had deleted it and was pissed it was back! Then when it came on again, I knew it was a phone call. P was worried as he didn't know if I'd had to stop due to my legs. He was checking up on me. I said I was fine but running behind schedule.

During 11-12 miles, I also saw a lot of people being treated by St Johns, I think the heat got the better of A LOT of people, I heard it did last year too and there were people being wheeled off the course on stretchers, runners laying at the side of the road being treated, it was a shocking sight and made me quite emotional, I do hope that everyone was OK/is OK now!

Mile 13
The home straight! At this point I just wanted to be done and managed to run this entire mile and a bit to the finish line. There were also LOADS of supporters around this part of the race and SO much encouragement. People you didn't know shouting out your name from your bib, it was pretty amazing.
Pic Screenshotted from SportCam!
When I saw the finish line in sight, I just pushed myself as hard as I could, I was desperate to just stop running! I crossed this finish line with a chip time of 2:27:05. I felt pretty emotional crossing the finish line. I was just SO glad to have made it through despite injury. The whole run was uncomfortable for my legs but I was determined not to let it get the better of me.
I knew I had to keep walking or my legs would seize up. I went to find P and then made a mad dash for the toilets which thankfully weren't too busy! The walk and drive home sucked too with tired aching legs. I had pretty much seized up by the time we got home and I could hardly walk from the car to the house!

Overall, I'd definitely do Run Hackney again, in fact I'm already registering my interest for next year. The support on the course was amazing, there was never a lonely street and there was encouragement from at least someone, even when they had no idea who you were. The race was really organised, plenty of water stations available which was great considering the heat! All in all a great Half Marathon and I was so glad I took part.

I do think it would be a great Half Marathon for anyone that is looking to do their first Half Marathon for this reason!

I'm also linking up with Jessica at The Silvah Lining, Charlie at The Runner Beans and Kelli at Destination Awesome. If you have done a race recently, you're more than welcome to join in, go and check out the hosts! :)
The Silvah Lining
Question: Have you ever done a running event before? What is your favourite?

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  1. @ReeRee Rockette Thank you, honey! :) x

  2. Great finish despite the trots! Aren't they the worst?! My husband makes fun of me, he says he doesn't remember ever having that problem when he ran cross country... Thank you for linking up with us!

  3. @Jessica Silva Thanks! :) They definitely are the worst! My OH doesn't seem to have this issue either. He was laughing as I was trying to shuffle over to the porta-loo's after the race. ;)

  4. Ah well done honey! That's really great going ;) x

  5. @Steph thanks love! Tried my best.. just got to get my legs back to normal now so I can run again, haha! ;)

  6. Awww congrats, what a great time!


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