In short: Happiness is ... running the Purbeck Marathon ... In full: WOW !!! What a great event; the scenery is absolutely stunning the whole way round and more than distracts the brain from the 3,000 feet of climbing. There is so much to see on the route; the ruined village of Tyneham at Mile 14, Corfe Castle at Mile 20 with a level crossing to negotiate, we all tiptoed past a massive bull half way up the long drag to Kingston (he didn't seem to mind lots of runners on his territory!), and passed through a beautiful herd of Devonshire Ruby Red cattle at Mile 22. I loved all the hills because of the spectacular views from the top - I saw the Isle of Portland at one point!! The longest ascent starts at around Mile 21, just outside Corfe and continues up the Purbeck Ridge for about three miles; more than worth the effort for the view of Poole Bay, Brownsea Island and Swanage. The last couple of miles are downhill or flat & it seemed that drinking in all that beautiful scenery had done it's job - before I knew it I was doing an exhilarating 8:30 min/mile along the seafront at Swanage to the finish line! I found the organisation to be first-class and the friendly marshals & volunteers deserve a special mention with all their kind words of encouragement - they do a great job for us runners! What really stood out on this marathon was the support from the general public. On some races you only get a sprinkling of support, but on this one they were lining the streets through Kingston, Corfe and Swanage. It felt like the whole local community was getting involved and I lost count how many times I had to say "thank you" to those offering words of encouragement. This not only happened in the villages, but also with walkers along the tops in the middle of nowhere! I took my phone with me & took photos the whole way round (I've posted them to the Purbeck Marathon fb page). The pot of ice cream at the Finish Line was a touch of genius and a Big Thank You to the organisers for making this such a memorable day. Date of review: September 19, 2014
In short: My first marathon. In full: I chose it because its a local race and had brilliant reviews. Really enjoyed it, smiled most of the way round. The marshals were amazing, however, I wont be able to eat a jelly baby for a while! Date of review: September 18, 2014
In short: Tough but made so worthwhile by the organisers and marshals In full: Well organised from start to finish. This event doesn't have the signs of a commercial ("in it for the money") feel but a warm and most enjoyable run; organised by runners for runners. The water stations were brilliant and all the volunteers generous with their support and encouragement. Thank you to one and all who made it such fun! Date of review: September 18, 2014
In short: Hilly, hilly, hilly and then more hills. In full: Enjoyed this a lot. Be prepared for lots of hills, a couple just last forever and are relentless. Train well and enjoy the day. The start was a little strange, we weren't sure where the start line was!The course is lovely, though there was a lack of signage in a few places. Possibly the pixies stole the arrows? The locals came out in support with sweets and cheers, all the marshals were fab. Nice medal, fab shoulder bag and shirt, beer, pot of I've cream all in all great value. Hoody however was not up to expectation. There was a cheap version and a deluxe, I bought two deluxe. When I went to collect I only had one waiting and spent a while trying to prove I paid for two. Then I got them and the 'deluxe embroidered' hoody felt a bit cheap and has a massive iron on transfer as the main back design, it's only embroidered on the front and arms. Still, very happy overall. Will look back on the day fondly and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it.
Train well and don't buy a hoody. That''s my plan next time! Date of review: September 17, 2014
In short: Definitely one to do at least once in a lifetime. Beautiful and such a warm vibe to it. In full: Really well organised, with the magic ingredient of genuine warmth and pride in the event. Some lovely touches.. And all really good value. I am a reasonably seasoned trail runner now but this one was super special. Will sell out fast next year Date of review: September 17, 2014