Edinburgh Marathon and Running Festival – 2012

Congratulations to all those who took part in this weekend’s festival of running in Edinburgh.

A multitude of events were held over the two days, but for most of the members it was either the Half Marathon or Marathon race that held interest.

Fresh from his exertions at the marathon, Sean Kelly has posted this race report.



Third Time Lucky!

All week I have been checking the weather forecast for Edinburgh. In  2010 it was incredibly hot (25°) and in 2011 there were 25 mile an hour winds  in the final 8 miles. I started thinking that 25 is an unlucky number as far as  the Edinburgh Marathon goes. Maybe this year we would have 25 inches of rain…
Anyway, the (normally) reliable BBC Weather site stated for the past five days  that it would be overcast and around 10º when the race began and it would get a  little warmer by 1pm, but not much.

I stayed in Edinburgh  on Friday and Saturday. Along with my partner Trish and my lad, Luke, we stayed  in the Apex Hotel in the Green Market area. We had a fabulous view of the  castle from our room…but also a less than fabulous view of the drinking and  shouting in the street that went on ‘til 3.30am (if I’d have known that Rob Wishart was on a night out I would have moved to the back of the hotel sooner…). So, on Saturday night we stayed in a quieter room and I woke up READY TO BATTLE! I have failed twice to break the magic (number) 3 hours for the marathon and this was going to be my last shot at it. If I failed this time I don’t think that I would have run another (“Hurray”, shouts Captain Hilton).

I met Lisa Walker and then Andy Harrison near the baggage buses. We bumped into Mike Norberry shortly after. We were all nervous but anxious to be under starters orders. TBH had experienced another triumph yesterday at the local Track and Field (Kenny had run himself into a state of  exhaustion) and we wanted to add to the pride of the club by pushing our bodies through 26.2 miles.

Andy, Mike and I lined up near to the front, a smart move, we didn’t have to weave around people dressed up as penguins (I kid you not!). Mike didn’t have a stopwatch, just a clock-face watch. His plan? Stick to Sean like glue (but only on the left side!). He would become freaked out if he wandered over to my right side, I don’t know why. Tell us why Mike.

I was aiming for between 6/45 and 6/50 per mile. This would give me around 2 hours and fifty eight minutes. Mike was looking to break 3 hours. Andy wanted something around 3 hours 5 minutes.

Incredibly for a marathon, my plan worked! I ran almost all of my miles at the correct pace, after a 6/35 for the first mile. Mike stuck to my pace until just before the 24th mile. I had urged him to push on as I thought that I was holding him back.

In my mind I began to doubt myself at about 21 miles. I started to think of reasons to stop, walk and just finish. I thought about why I didn’t have the drive any more to run myself to a frazzle. I’m too content in my life, I have a lovely partner, a beautiful son and I’m a pretty happy guy. I love running and I am incredibly proud of Tyne Bridge Harriers and the achievements of the club over the past 18 months. Isn’t that enough? I’m 42 years old, shouldn’t I just run for the fun of it now? NO! NO! and NO! again. You cannot beat the feeling of pushing your body to its limit, defying the pain and banishing the mental gremlins that seek to destabilise you in the latter stages of a race like this. I battled and I pushed the negative thoughts out with positive ones – “ You’ve never been better prepared,” “You might never get another chance to do this, ” and most of all, “You cannot let your mates down.”

David Daniels has done so much to help and support me in my training and race preparation. My legs managed to find some new energy and I locked into a 6/40 pace for the final 2 ½ miles. I saw David at the 25 mile marker. Wow, what a lift it gave me. I shouted that I was on 2 hours 50 minutes exactly. I gave it my all, saw Trish and Luke in the finishing straight and I punched the air. Trish was going crazy and Luke was embarrassed (that’s what parents do kid). I crossed the line in 2 hours 58 minutes and 54 seconds.
I was ecstatic. I fell to the floor and the pain and tiredness hit me like a hammer. I didn’t care. I’d done it.

Mike was so close to breaking the magic 3 at his first attempt. He ran 3 hours and 12 seconds.

Andy did himself proud in only his second marathon with a new PB of 3 hours and 21 minutes, there’s plenty more to come from this guy.

I met Lisa in the re-union area and she had really fought hard to cross the finish line. She’s been training off-road for this and the hard surface caused her back to seize up. The heat (28˚!) had really caused her marathon debut to be a real baptism of fire. Well done for fighting the good fight.

I look forward to hearing the reports from all of our other Gladiators. Now I’m off to bed…


Race results to follow shortly.

Below are several photographs taken on the day.

Lisa Walker and Sean Kelly prior to Marathon

Janine Swail (left), Marie-Claude Tremblay (centre) and Danielle Rutherford following the Half-Marathon

Sean, with partner Trish and son, Luke

Permanent link to this article: https://www.tynebridgeharriers.com/2012/05/27/edinburgh-marathon-and-running-festival-2012/


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  1. Well done Sean. Not for running a stunning race but for writing up your great report in double quick time ;-)

    Seeing you achieve your target gave me the same sense of wonderment as when I ran my first sub-3 hour race and I’m sure there’s room for improvement (should you defy Captain Hilton and run another one) .

    Congratulations to all the lads n lasses who ran in the half and full marathon races. It was tremendous seeing so many black n white vests representing the club.

    • kenny mac on 27th May 2012 at 22:34
    • Reply

    Well done Sean, all the hard work has paid off, so happy for you now that you are a member of the Sub3Gang

    • Paul Hilton on 27th May 2012 at 22:38
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    Sean you have done yourself , TBH ,Trish and Luke proud today in running your sub 3hours.

    Hopefully you will now concentrate on getting PBs in the shorter events as we need you for Vets relays and counter for 10ks etc.

    • Danielle on 28th May 2012 at 08:42
    • Reply

    Well done Sean! Fantastic run and a fantastic report! By about 9am the sun was really gettin out and it was HOT! :)

  2. Great run Sean, get yourself entered for Chester now, and you can take me Sub 3 with you this time.

    1. If Sean doesn’t fancy the pace-maker role will you settle for moi?

    • caballo tonto on 28th May 2012 at 10:27
    • Reply

    Thanks for the report, Sean. I actually saw you, Mike and Andy in tight formation at one point, you were so quick, but I know why: you wanted to get out of the sun, right? Gutted for Lisa, tremendous effort on her side to battle in out in the heat though. Well done everyone who ran yesterday.

    • Micky Baker on 28th May 2012 at 10:38
    • Reply

    Well done everyone a truely great effort considering the heat.

    • Deka on 29th May 2012 at 09:03
    • Reply

    great report well done sean on getting your sub 3 hour and all of the other TBH runners who competed

    • Cat on 29th May 2012 at 12:49
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    Well done Sean, it was scorchio on Sunday! congratulations! enjoy your recovery :)

    • Diane on 29th May 2012 at 14:49
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    Brilliant! Well done you guys x inspirational

    • Janine on 29th May 2012 at 17:02
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    What a fantastic report Sean and huge congrats on making your sub-3. You just proved than when you want something so much it is possible to set your goals and achieve it! Good grief, you’ve nearly inspired me to do a marathon now after reading that!

    • Kev jeffress on 2nd June 2012 at 17:53
    • Reply

    Excellent report sean and fantastic running, well done marra

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