In short: Boring & uninspiring In full: Forth time of doing Edinburgh Marathon which should be renamed East Lothian Marathon as you start in the east end of the city and are in East Lothian for 20 miles or so. Did the first one in 2003 which was in Edinburgh and was pretty scenic. What a contrast with 2013. The start is probably the best part. The run from leith links onwards is dull and boring and from Musselburgh race course you're doubling back on your self. As it is along coastal rods crowds are sparse. The finish is totally underwhelming as it doesn't even finish in the race course but a below average park which is not scenic so no sense of achievement not like a stadia such as meadow bank or holyrood park. Only reason I ran this time was it is local and for charity but I had been warned. If you want to run on a pretty flat course and be bored out your mind without a wow factor at the finish then this is for you! Date of review: May 27, 2013
In short: Organisation and signage need improving In full: The atmosphere was OK. Toilets were too sparse at the beginning and were (as such) pretty disgusting. The goody bag was a bit stingy considering the price of entry and the mile markers were sparse. Local support was good though and the luggage seemed well organised. The race crew were fantastic! Overall, an OK sort of race. Date of review: May 27, 2013
In short: Getting better but still not great In full: 9th time I've run Edinburgh, and definitely improves year on year. Dropped out after a mile due to injury last year so didn't see the finish then, but it is much better than the farce of 2 years ago. Would prefer if energy drinks were on offer rather than gels, which most runners carry anyway. A bit congested in places, such as the short out & back after the first mile (not sure why this has been moved from closer to the finish, as previously), and the brief switch onto loose dirt & stones after mile 18 isn't great and has the potential for injury. Felt every bit of rutted tarmac after Cockenzie on the way back too, but that's out of the organisers control. Should really be called the East Lothian marathon, with many miles of dull empty beach & country road. On the plus side, support in the last mile or so is great and event is well organised. Definite PB potential too, but as others have said course definitely undulates, rather than being as flat as described by the organisers. Date of review: May 27, 2013
In short: Poorest of the four I have run In full: With Edinburgh getting IAAF Bronze status this year I was expecting better things than last year, which was actually rather good. Unfortunately, several mile markers were out (most from mile 17 onwards) and some missing (mile 1 for example). This really screwed up my pacing as I don't run with a Garmin, and is the last thing you want when you are using every last bit of concentration.
I don't run for goody bags but this year's offering was extremely stingy and the race really should be renamed the Lothian Marathon, you see virtually nothing of the city, resulting in very sparse support. This was the worst out of the four I have done, will not be back. Date of review: May 27, 2013
In short: Flat it ain't. In full: It's not flat, undulating is a better way of describing it.
It was hot too and those combined made it good enough for a personal worst time for me. HOWEVER - do not let that put you off This is an excellent race and not nearly as crowded as London.
The organisation is slick, the race crew were all up for it and did a great job of encouraging you along. I come from Leicester so there is not mice sea side near me so a chance to see, smell and hear the beach was fantastic.
Shame the shuttle busses are so far from the finish line but I was expecting a long wait when I got there but hopped straight on a bus and was on my way back to Edinburgh in less than 5 minutes.
The crowd during the last 1/4 mile was immense and the whole race was worn that last little bit, it was like your own personal FA Cup final.
This was on my bucket Los of races to do and yes I will do it again, but only after I have finished my list. Date of review: May 27, 2013
In short: Great scenery and support throughout In full: I was a bit nervous about this race having read previous reviews about water shortages and poor organisation, but thought it ran like clockwork. The first five miles or so seemed to flash past getting down to the sea and from there until the end there was great scenery. The marshals were all really supportive and there was great support for most of the course. I finished on a complete high and would definitely do it again to try and beat my time. The last mile or so was amazing with all the supporters and the finish line - great noise and massive motivation. I received my time by text within about 10 minutes of finishing the race, so that was pretty impressive too. One downside was that I think a few of the mile markers may have been quite a bit out - overall it came in about right on my Garmin, but some of the mile markers were up to 0.4 miles out. I don't think it was just me as I heard lots of beeping from other people at the same times as mine, and my Garmin is usually pretty reliable. Date of review: May 27, 2013
In short: A good marathon, but with room to improve In full: The course is reasonable and net downhill, despite this there are a lot of deceptive minor ups and downs along the coast. The weather was good but can be windy which limits PB potential. There is an intermittent but enthusiastic crowd although there is virtually no support from mile 16-22. It remains difficult to get back to the city after the race (took me 1 1/2 hours) and there is a mile walk to the shuttle bus. The finish area in the school grounds with a large field was very good, although the goody bag was pitiful this year. Date of review: May 27, 2013