Sunday the 23rd of March 2014 saw 816 runners take on the 13.1 mile run around Loughborough and the surrounding area. Starting in the town centre, the Loughborough Half Marathon took the runners through the University campus, through the countryside into Hathern and slowly but surely back through campus and finished back in the town centre. The race was welcome to runners of all levels and all ages, but with a winning time of 1:10:30, it is safe to say there was some serious talent running around Loughborough that day. Amongst many Loughborough University students that took part, media member Mike Silva told Label about his personal experience running the race:
To say that waking up at 6:30 on a Sunday morning after a few hours of disturbed sleep was difficult is an understatement to say the least. All the preparations were in order in the morning; a healthy breakfast was followed up by a few light stretches on the balcony at my halls in town.
As I looked down onto the roads in town, I could see runners of all ages gently warming up and little by little they all convalesced in the centre by the starting line. Absorbing the atmosphere was fantastic, a cold and dark Loughborough morning was surreally contrasted against the burning spirits of the contestants about to take part in a great test of physical and mental ability.
The horn sounded and the race commenced. Few runners sprinted ahead, few dropped behind and the rest including myself gingerly strolled down the town centre road as the route was approaching the University. Pace picked up and the pack began to disperse in various directions and at various speeds, and before I knew it, a go pro camera, fitted with a head strap was chucked to me by fellow Loughborough University Fresher and English student Sagar Gautam.
The turbulence of the wind was a factor that began my progress, yet with the 10 kilometer water station in the depths of my sight I ran towards it hurriedly. It gave me a new lease of life, shoulders back and knee strides grew as I sailed through the park and started my dash towards the finish line.
The serendipitous feeling of having a half marathon medal placed around my neck is a moment that I shall long hold. As the other runners in my group joined me at the finish line, after grabbing a few freebies, we could finally sit down and revel in the grandiosity of our achievement.
To see for yourself what the race was like, check out Mike’s GoPro video of the race day: