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The Edinburgh Great Winter Run

Holyrood Park by icelight

Holyrood Park by icelight

The Great Run series of running events is the world’s largest running programme. Based on the Great Northern Run in Newcastle it now has events throughout the UK – and even in Australia!” 

I’ve run in the two Edinburgh Events – the Great Edinburgh Run (10km), and the Great Winter Run (5km). The Winter Run follows the road around Arthur’s Seat, making it one of the most scenic city runs you could hope to compete in.  I first ran these runs when I was training for the Edinburgh marathon and wanted some additional goals along the way.

This year is the third year I’ve run the Great Winter Run, and being the middle of the Scottish winter you don’t quite know what kind of weather you’re going to get. Last winter the ground was snow covered and painfully cold. This year was not as cold, but was extremely windy with gusts above 40 mph at the base. Anyone who knows Edinburgh will realise that this will understate the wind speed at the road at the top.

The wind was right in my face during the steep ascent (104m according to MapMyRun) and although I finished strongly in the last two kilometres I was 11 seconds slower than last year.

I did however place better in a field that was about 300 larger than in the previous year. This suggests that even though my time was worse, the conditions made it difficult for all runners.

My goal for this run was to better my previous time while doing less running training. While I certainly did less running than in previous years, I didn’t manage to beat my previous time. One lesson I will take away is that I would do more hill training next time. However I do feel that if the conditions were the same as last year I would at least have equaled, if not bettered my time. So because of this I will claim a tentative success.

Workout: 5 km run – 20:00 minutes

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