50/50 marathons

3. Chelmsford Marathon

20th October 2019

Chelmsford Marathon

What can I tell you about Chelmsford? Apparently it’s famous for being the birthplace of radio, it’s also notorious for congestion and pot holes. I only entered the Chelmsford Marathon because I couldn’t find an alternative, so needless to say I wasn’t excited to do this one. Plus I was on my own so I’d decided that this was going to be a get in, get out as fast as possible trip.

I’d spent the previous couple of days in Brighton with my daughter Ella, which was great. We went to see Richard Hawley at Brighton Dome and spent the following day just mooching around. So when I had to leave to drive to Essex I wasn’t too happy.

I’d booked a room in a pub called the ship, big mistake, the noise from the pub came right up through the floor and the smoking area was outside my window, so even though I had an early night, I couldn’t sleep. Didn’t help that my room didn’t have a toilet so I was forever walking back and forth to the toilet to empty my overly hydrated bladder!

I was close to the marathon start though, so the morning was pretty smooth, if anything I could have had an extra half hour snooze. It was a cold start, it’s fair to say that from here on in the marathons will be cold as we enter the autumn months.

It did warm up though as the day went on so turned out to be quite a pleasant run.

The marathon starts in the city centre and then winds it’s way through Central Park and out into the Essex country side, before heading back in to the finish in Central Park. I’d started quite far back to ensure I didn’t go off to fast, but it meant getting stuck on narrow paths congested with runners for a good few miles before things eventually spread out a bit.

I tucked into a slot in the 4 hour pack being led along by a pacer like rats following the pied piper. I’d decided to stick with this pace up until the half way point and then see how I felt after that. I’ve never really followed a pacer before, it was funny to see how everyone clustered around him so tightly for fear of losing their pace.

By 12 miles I unintentionally found myself at the front of the pack and then just slowly pushed forward. I felt ok and things were made more comfortable by having some space around me.

I have to say this was a pretty boring run as marathons go. It was fairly flat going and although quite rural it was very bland to look at, I guess I was spoiled by the previous weeks marathon at the Eden project, that will take some beating.

By mile 20 I was glad to do the final 6 mile count down. I actually felt good and able to push on a bit faster. The pain in my ankle that started after the Isle of Wight marathon was there still, but was bearable, as was my right big toe, I’m not sure at this point how or if it’s survived another Marathon but I’ll find out soon enough. Regardless of these niggles, the last few miles back into Central Park were good, I picked up the pace and felt strong at the final mile which is always a good thing.

Upon crossing the line I headed straight back to the car to get home as soon as I could. Glad it’s done, don’t think it’ll be on my list to do again. I dare say there will be a few more like this as I continue with the 50, not all of them can be as epic as Eden Project Marathon, although next week looks like it could be interesting, the Beachy Head Marathon.

If you’d be interested in running the Chelmsford Marathon in the future, take a look at Havens Hospice.

Chelmsford Marathon
Chelmsford Marathon


Time taken




Calories burned

I am running these marathons to raise money for Mind. If you like what I’m doing and would like to donate you can go to my Just Giving page below.