Spring Blickling Half Marathon Beauties & the Hundred Hills Ultra!

A great turnout by the club today at the Spring Blickling Half Marathon.  Today’s report is written by Michelle (thank you Michelle 👍)

‘I arrived at Blickling half nice and early but you could already tell it was going to be a lovely day for a run, coolish and dry, perfect.

There was a good turnout of RntS all grouped together at the start excited for the off and we managed to get a photo with the house in the background, taken by Andy Payne who came to support.

We started pretty much on time and made our way down the road and out into the woods.

Blickling half is a beautiful run, a two lap course through beautiful countryside and woods with a few ups and downs and the odd puddle to dodge, there was even a bit of mud in some places.  It’s such a beautiful course you almost forget how painful those final few miles are.

We had great support from all the marshal’s out on the course and from Andy taking photos and Mark and Vikki strategically positioned at the bottom of some downhill sections where we saw them three times.  Massive thanks to the supporters, it was very much appreciated.

All in all it was a very enjoyable race with a pretty medal at the end and a choice of banana, muffin or iced ring donut for refueling, I had the donut 🙂’


Official Results:
Jimmy – 01:27:21.5 – 1st in class
Kyle –  01:30:10.4
Kevin – 01:36:43.3
Lorraine – 01:39:39.3
Shane – 01:40:57.3
Bob H – 01:52:53.3 – 2nd in class
Gemma -01:55:07.8
Lucy Mc – 02:04:47.3
Laura -02:09:40.5
Kerrie – 02:16:12.2
Marie – 02:19:35.2
Michelle – 02:22:44.2

Spring Blickling Half

Hundred Hills 50k

‘On Saturday 18th March I took on the Hundred Hills 50km race organised by Centurion Running. The event was held on the beautiful Chiltern countryside through stunning trails, some of which go through incredibly beautiful ancient woodland. 300+ runners started and finished at the 850-year-old Stonor Park, with the park also acting as the third checkpoint at halfway point. Having run on there Chilterns before I knew I was in for a treat.

As a back-of-the-pack ultra runner, who has to be very careful about meeting all the cutoffs in time, I planned very carefully to meet all the 6 cutoffs of this race. Prior to the race, I studied the elevation profile and with reasonable familiarity of the area, too, knew there were going to be some very long and steep technical climbs as well as very long and steep technical descents. I would capitalise on running the downhill sections as fast as possible to make up for any time lost having to hike steep inclines. This plan did not work as well as I’d anticipated as the trails were very muddy making it difficult for me to run freely on the descents. I found myself having to exert extra effort not to slip and slide despite the good grip on my shoes. I even did some tree hugging on some descents to gain momentum! I had only 10 mins to spare before the first checkpoint would close and knew that this was not a good position to be in. I had to do a lot of self-talk to do better so as to arrive well in advance of the other cps. This worked 🙂 I arrived at cp2 in good shape but I’d got quite wet from the rain which had started soon after I’d packed away my waterproof jacket in my running vest early on in the race.  So at cp2 I decided to change into dry clothes and wear my waterproof jacket back again so I’d carry on running in comfort. It was definitely the right decision. I found checkpoints 3 and 4 cutoff times very easy to meet but had only 10 mins to spare when I’d got to cp5 so decided not to stop at all but to make my way on the final stretch. I did have a down point I think during the cp4 and cp5 stretch when I started to doubt myself as an ultra runner. Luckily this doubt didn’t linger on. I had to stop twice to tend to a painful cramp in my lower hamstrings which came on suddenly on the steep descents.  I know I’d have lost some time in both cases but had to sort it out before I could carry on running.

I’m trying to recall how many puddles I had to go through (certainly in the second half of the race). There were many. My feet would get very wet but I did not experience discomfort in my feet at all. I put it down to the right choice I’d made wearing my Drymax socks, my go-to when running on wet terrain.

I was very happy with my hydration and nutrition throughout the race. The checkpoints were very well-stocked with great choices and I went for my all time favourites: blocks of cheese, cheese sandwich, grapes, banana, satsumas and crisps along with Tailwind as my electrolyte which is provided at all checkpoints.

A final look at my Garmin indicated that I had 812 metres to the finish. Only 812m! I was going to make the final cutoff, too. There was a lot of cheering as I approached the finish line in Stonor Park.  Crewing during the race is not allowed but I knew that Tim was following me digitally and was with me in spirit while I was out on the course. And of course there he was waiting for me at the finish line. I got quite emotional as I approached the finish and broke into hysterical crying as I crossed the line.

It was a “balancing act” on an elevation profile of over 1300 m (4400 ft) and certainly a  great workout for the whole body, and mind and soul 😉 Would I do it again? Yes. Definitely. ‘


Official Result: