50/50 marathons

11. SVN Festive Frolic Marathon

15th December 2019

SVN Festive Frolic

This weekends marathon adventure took me down to Dover to Run in the shadow of the white cliffs.

I drove down to Dover on the Saturday afternoon, quite a drive. Couldn’t find a campsite to pitch up in so stayed at a Travelodge instead.

The following morning I had a short drive to a place called Samphire Hoe, a nature reserve on the Dover coast. Here I found a jolly band of runners called Saxons, vikings and Normans. They organise quite a few running events throughout the year and appear to have a loyal following. I was amazed at the amount of runners who had completed over 100 marathons, one guy was competing in his 1000th marathon! I find that hard to comprehend. So my little 50 marathon challenge wasn’t anything to brag about.

SVN Festive Frolic

After race brief we set out across Samphire hoe to run 8 laps of a 3.28 mile loop. To begin with the weather was fine, cold, but ok, but after a couple of laps the wind started to increase, followed by an icy rain. There were parts of the route where the wind was behind and others where it was full on in the face, but it was freezing at all times. For a short route it had some interesting hills that got harder and harder.

I’ve come to the conclusion that I really don’t like lapped marathons. I find them much harder than a full loop or an out and back course. They’re mentally harder because you go past the finish line several times. Throughout the course of a marathon I always go through the mental torture of just wanting to stop, and it’s so tempting when you’re doing laps, especially in conditions like that.

My ankles are sore right from the start now so I need to keep my mind off of the discomfort. Also my water pack appears to be leaking so my back gets wet and very cold. By the end I was a shivering jibbering wreck just sat in my van under a blanket trying to get warm.

I thought the camaraderie shown by the other runners was brilliant, and the organisation was superb, there wasn’t really any marshals other than people clipping a ticket when you completed a lap, but everyone involved seemed very jolly. The aid station was stocked with all sorts of goodies, mainly chocolate. At the end you get a great medal and goody bag full of stuff to eat, none of it healthy.

I’ve booked in for another of their events next year called the mods and rockers marathon, so that will be something to look forward to.

If you’d be interested in running any of the Saxons, Vikings and Normans events, take a look at saxon-shore.com

SVN Festive Frolic


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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.