20th February 2022 – Deal, Kent

Deal Half Marathon Route

In order to keep on track with at least a moderate level of fitness in preparation for the forthcoming Greenland trip I have been entering the usual half marathons. Deal is the first up for 2022 and serves two very useful functions. Firstly, it is a great excuse to catch up with fellow Vertue owner Philip Main who lives nearby and secondly it is a fitness check just two weeks before the brutal and very muddy Steyning Stinger.

Let’s get the excuses over with, and there’s always something wrong. This time I broke a toe over Christmas, and I have been hobbling around for six weeks. The limping caused weird muscle pains right up my right leg which still kicks in when I walk but strangely doesn’t seem to be so bad when I run. So, I entered this race with just a couple of weeks training and the possible threat that my leg would stop playing half-way round the gently undulating course.

With some trepidation I therefore predicted a slow time of around 2 hours 10 minutes but was pleasantly surprised to actually finish in 2 hours 05 minutes and 57 seconds. The wind was forecast as SW going W at around 50 mph which made the first half hard work but there was a nice payback during the second half with the wind on your back.

Over the years my results at Deal have been:

2014       1 hour 46 minutes 48 seconds

2015       1 hour 44 minutes 43 seconds

2017       1 hour 50 minutes 46 seconds

2018       1 hour 55 minutes 02 seconds

2019       2 hours 07 minutes 12 seconds

2022       2 hours 05 minutes 57 seconds

The cut off time for the race is 2 hours 30 minutes so I reckon I’ve got a few more years in me before I’m too slow to enter.

After the run we joined Philip and Sarah for an excellent roast Sunday lunch at the Blue Pigeons in Worth. I must try to remember that counterintuitively I am never mega hungry after a run and the giant portions got the better of me. Lovely food nevertheless.

The rain kicked in as we drove home. Another fine weekend.

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