Monday, 17 September 2012

Running someone else's race

As I have done for the previous 6 years, I did yesterday's Great North Run as a chaperone for one of the celebrity runners.

Yesterdays partner (victim) was BBC's Countryfile presenter Adam Henson.  Adam had never ran a half marathon before (or any other event for that matter) but had ran as far as 10 miles in training.  Aiming to finish in under 2 hours, his ideal target was a 1.50 finish. We agreed that we would just set off at a pace with which Adam felt comfortable and I would monitor the time.

The GNR is a downhill start, and a first mile in 8.03 (just over 1.44 pace) meant we were already ahead of schedule so the pace eased and the next mile was covered in 8.41.  However, Adam was feeling comfortable and miles of  8.15 and 8.17 followed and this included the drag up to Heworth.

The pace kept pretty much the same until we reached a flatter section of the course and miles 7 and 8 were knocked out in 7.41 and 7.38.  We were now starting to pass quite a few of those who had flew past us at the beginning of the race.

We were  now, however, fast approaching unknown territory for Adam and the long drag up John Reed Road. So, we again backed slightly of the pace, dropping back to roughly 8 minute mile pace.  Adam was looking strong though and once we hit the road along by The Links and only a mile to run, the pace was picked up again, for our fastest mile of the day at 7.35 and a finishing time of 1.46.28.

For me it was an enjoyable Sunday morning run with some pleasant company.  Adam seemed pleased with his time and hopefully enjoyed the experience.  To be honest, I feel he could have ran a couple of minutes faster but we opted for a cautious approach.

Hopefully he will return next year and a new pb.

Thanks to Anita for photos


Terry Lonergan said...

An interesting exercise,Alan. Well done. The guy obviously keeps fit chasing sheep around! Shame though you couldn't chaperone Nell!! Didn't see her running this year.

Alan Dent said...

Hi Terry - Nell not therre thuis year - mind you think I would have had trouble keeping up with her when you look at the times she has been posting this year