Chris Moon Half Marathon
Running a half marathon exactly 2 weeks after a full marathon that you’ve collapsed at the end of probably doesn’t sound like the wisest of ideas. And well to be quite frank, it isn’t, but the temptation of a half marathon on my doorstep, in far more favourable conditions than that scorching day in Edinburgh was just too much for me.
The race is named after Chris Moon, a former soldier who was badly injured while on duty in Africa. A whole tenner of the £14 entry fee went straight to the Erskine Hospital which looks after ex-servicemen so it is very honest event.
The race route takes in the Whitelees Forest and some quite stunning views of the Clyde Valley and Ayrshire. It was a very undulating course, with plenty of intimidating inclines but also a lot of downhill. We were bussed out to Whitelees from the centre of Strathaven as this is where the race started. We then ran through the forest and back down to Strathaven.
I started off very well, probably too well again! Two racers sped ahead quite quickly and left me and another bloke to run together. Had a good chat with him but eventually I just couldn’t keep up the pace with him. The hills just kept coming! I kept thinking it must be flat or downhill from now on and then another massive incline would pop up. It was great training though. Another two runners took over me within the last few miles but I managed to hold on for a respectable 6th place. I had my dad cheering me on for the final straight and my mum and the finish line.
This was without the doubt one of the most challenging events I have taken part in and was never going to be a PB, but the sense of accomplishment afterwards made up for this.
The highlight of the day was definitely being given a Scotch pie and a pint of ale back at race HQ. Only in Scotland!
All in all a great event, a decent performance given the circumstances and I will definitely be taking part again next year. In the meantime back to some flat 10Ks for a while I think!