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Edinburgh half marathon, hills and bagpipes…

Alright, there are hills in Edinburgh. But did you know they only ever go uphill?

I haven’t had a chance to talk to my trusted geologist on this, but definitely tectonic plate shifts in Edinburgh on Sunday. I am sure the Scottish papers reported on this.

I liked the race.

Let’s start with that.

The Rock ‘n Roll team (Competitor Group) know what they are doing and the race was very well organized.

View over the finish line and the race expo

The expo was small but still enjoyable and as we picked up our race packs and wandered through the expo, we were listening to the Red Hot Chilli Pipers who were rocking the bagpipes on the stage.

We met some lovely runners from Oregon, Texas and Mexico on a guided literary walk we took. It was great to connect with other runners.

Race day was cold. We woke up to -1C    –   “feels like -4C” my weather app wanted me to know… It warmed up to balmy +1C as we walked to the start line. As it was sunny, it probably warmed up by another degree or 2 by start time. The start and finish was most likely the lowest geographical point in Edinburgh… You know what’s coming next…

Before the start. looking all confident!

Once we got going, the cold wasn’t really anything I noticed anymore.

The first 4 miles were perfectly flat with maybe even a little downhill thrown in. At mile 4.5 the torture started… From here on it was rolling hills until mile 12.5 for the finish line dash. My research on hills on the course must have been lacking thoroughness. It was a pretty tough course (and I have run in San Francisco!) and the 8 miles rolling hills felt like uphill rolling only. I think twice or three times we had a very short downhill teaser. They were teasers alright! They were never long enough though for me to regain any speed.

I don’t know how this works. I am not a geologist. We started and finished at the same point, but it felt like we were running uphill MUCH MORE than downhill. That’s where I think there must have been some tectonic plate shifts… Check the papers…

I was trying to see if my NIKE+ GPS watch gives me elevation gain data, so I could compare this race with the San Francisco Nike Women’s Marathon/Half Marathon elevation gain. But I couldn’t find this information with the NIKE+ data. If anyone knows how to look up elevation gain, please let me know.

Edinburgh Rock 'n Roll Half Marathon medal

The last downhill dash to the finish line was fun though. I finished 6 minutes slower than my PR. As I was looking through past race results, I noticed that any race that I finished around the same time or faster was a flat course. This was my fastest ever hilly race!

Medal well deserved! 🙂

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