20/80 St. Aidan’s Trail Half Marathon and 1/4 of the Challenge Completed!

16/80 [15th October] Eastbourne Coastal Run I

I travelled down to Eastbourne for work last week and ran along the beautiful coastline into the centre of town and back out again, which formed a convenient half marathon distance route. I felt strong throughout and finished in my second fastest time of one hour 46 minutes. Apart from being a really scenic route, the coastal flat path certainly helped me keep the splits down!

Sean McGibney Eastbourne

17/80 [17th October] Eastbourne Coastal Run II

On my third day in Eastbourne, I decided to try and pace myself to a two-hour half marathon. Pacing is something I have struggled with that I am keen to develop through the challenge. A two-hour half marathon works out at five minutes 40 seconds per kilometre (just under nine minutes, nine seconds per mile). I finished in a time of one hour, 59 minutes, maintaining a steady pace throughout.

18/80 [19th October] Steady Morning Around Leeds

On my return to Leeds last Friday, I ran around familiar sites before sunrise. My legs felt strong and I think they are adapting to the distance and the regularity of the runs. I always find my speed much slower – up to 35 seconds per kilometre – when I wake up and run, as opposed to running later in the day after I have properly fuelled and hydrated.

19/80 [21st October] St. Aidan’s Trail Half Marathon, Leeds

On Sunday, I ran at St. Aidan’s Trail Half Marathon, organised by Even Splits. The course and organisation were both fantastic, and I’m ashamed to say I had never heard of St. Aidan’s Nature Reserve before the event – despite having lived in Leeds for a total of five years! I will definitely attend more Even Splits events in future.

I set off at PB pace, but my legs quickly reminded me this was my fifth half marathon distance in nine days. They say a smile costs nothing, but you wouldn’t think so by my face in the race-day photos!

St. Aidan's Trail Half Marathon Sean McGibney
Source: Yorkshire Runner Photos

Really happy to have completed my first trail half marathon and excited to take on a few courses that are hillier in the coming months (particularly the one described as “Grimmer than Grim”).

20/80 [ 23rd October] Kirkstall Hills

I ran the 17 hills of Kirkstall Road this morning built into my run. The hills are a monthly visit of Hyde Park Harriers and it was certainly a different experience running them alone at six in the morning! The frequency of runs in the past two weeks (this is my tenth since the start of October) have taken their toll slightly, and my legs feel heavy this evening. I will make a call tomorrow as to whether I rest until Rugby Half Marathon on Sunday, or whether I fit in another run on Thursday or Friday.

And so brings about the quarter-way point of the challenge! It has been a great experience so far and I’m excited to meet lots more people in the coming months and share our stories.

If you would like to run (or walk!) with me, please get in touch. Thank you also to everybody who has donated, I’m delighted to be at 18% of my funding goal, but there’s a long way to go!

If you haven’t donated yet but would like to do so, please click here.