I’ve never run the Brighton Marathon – in fact my only experience of running in Brighton was not a good one (self inflicted poor race experience!) however I do know a couple of people who have run the race and have shared their race day advice below…
My absolute favourite Brighton marathon story is my friend Soph (although she was just a stranger I followed on Twitter when she ran her first marathon) – as she was finishing, her boyfriend (now fiancee – we’re getting old!) jumped over the barriers and ran her into the finish line shouting, ‘this is Soph and she’s running the marathon’! Check out her race recap.
My friend Fleur ran Brighton last year as her first marathon and shared some great advice (and a very honest race review here – don’t read this over your lunch!)
- Look at the course map. The majority of the course doubles back on itself. There will always be people ahead of you. Use it as an opportunity to spot friends who might be faster than you rather than feeling deflated.
- Just after Mile 8 when you see people heading round a round about and back towards you, be mentally prepared for the fact that you have to head off to the left of the round about and back for a 1.5 mile stretch. I hadn’t looked at the course map and this was mentally crushing.
- Don’t have your supporters stand at Mile 12/13, it’s ridiculously crowded and you won’t be able to spot them or stop to say hello. Mile 14 is a much better spot and they can see you again at Mile 18. I nearly cried when I thought I’d missed my hug and strawberry laces at the half way point.
- Mile 20-23 is and out and back round an industrial estate. It’s so very dull. There are very few supporters along this stretch. Prepare yourself for this mentally.
- Bring flip flops so you can give your feet a well deserved dip in the sea once you finish.
Here are some advice shared by blog readers;
- Book a hotel and stay overnight. Parking is a nightmare as is Southern Rail (Robyn had to stand all the way to Gatwick after the race)! Don’t forget to mention that you’re running the marathon to the hotel, ours put on a special early breakfast for us marathoners – Sarah
- Get to the expo as early as possible – or Friday if you can to avoid the queues on the Saturday. -Katie
- It’s quite a long walk to the start from the seafront but provides a good warm up, chat to the runners around you to calm the nerves. – Sarah
- The queue for the loo is LONG (Fleur waited 40mins and missed the race start) – go in your hotel then get in line as soon as you get to the start if you think you’ll need it again. There is a petrol station close by and they are happy for you to use loo- but if there is a queue don’t wait- go to the bush…who cares, it’s race day! – Robyn
- A lot of the course can be exposed to the wind which can make it quite hard – don’t get despondent about your pace if the wind picks up. – Robyn
- The first mile is uphill so take it slow- ease into it. – Sarah
- The crowds are great (although don’t line the whole course), and as the race isn’t as big as London or Paris, you have more space when you’re running and the water/aid stations aren’t too mental. – Robyn
- Miles 20-22 are nicknamed the ‘road to hell’ out to the power station. There’s actually quite a bit of support here as well as bands along the way. Once you get over this stage you turn around and head towards the pier and every step is closer to the finish line. – Katie
I can’t find a huge number of race recaps from the Brighton Marathon but here are a few to read, inspire and motivate you if you’re running Brighton this weekend or considering it for a future year…