The Lone Grainger Takes on Luton Half

30 October 2016 - By Anita Grainger




Anita decided to check out a different half marathon for a change and opted for Luton Half. On a foggy morning with the sun trying to poke through runners set off for a lap of Stockwood Park Athletics track and then out onto driveways and paths leading out of Stockwood park, a nice quick first mile followed by a long downhill section of road before heading over to Luton Hoo estate. The next 5 miles were a rollercoaster of fun round the estate consisting of 2 long uphill sections and 2 equally long downhill sections. The uphill was a good test of ‘getting on with it’ while the downhill parts were great fun!

After 7 miles the course headed out from Luton Hoo Estate into Luton town centre and out the other side for what was supposed to be the ‘flat’ section of the course or slightly undulating. Now normally that wouldn’t be a problem to pick up a nice bit of speed for the latter stages of a race, however, after the challenge of the long climbs in the first half my glutes started to object to the inclines around mile 10 when the course started to head back towards the town centre finish. I fared better than most runners around me as I managed to go past some and only had a few do the same to me. Mile 12 took in Wardown park and a sneaky bridge with, yep you guessed it, an incline to get up onto the bridge. The final stretch was back onto the road up another short incline before the final descent into the town.

I finished in 1:51:42 and was the 3rd F45 to finish, a good result from a challenging course.

The race was completely traffic free which was fantastic. The marshals were great. Chip timing results were provided as soon as you finished and runners were bused swiftly back to the race start. A continuous shuttle bus system was put in place for runners and spectators which worked well. We were also given foil blankets so we didn’t get cold post race. There were showers and massages available back at the athletics track and ample parking for competitors.

I’d recommend this race for anyone who’d like a more challenging half and fancy’s a different race. I may well enter in 2017!

Further info can be found on the link below & to get an idea of the course elevation I’ve included my strava results.


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