Salomon South Downs Marathon & 5K

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26/04/2010 at 22:16

Seing as there is less than 8 weeks to go to the 'big day', was curious to hear from anyone else running in this years event i.e. whether first time or repeat entrant, how is it, what to watch out for, training and kit advise .... Cheers

27/04/2010 at 07:55

ah yes


I have done every one since it started-think this is my fourth time

cracking race and great t shirt at the end

Its agressive in places what wuith the hills, but the views are worth it

I LOVE theSouth Downs!

27/04/2010 at 13:27

It must be your fifth this year PH, as it will be mine if I pull my finger out and enter.  I agree completely although the first year's t-shirt is still the best albeit a bit worn and smelly now.  That was my first marathon though so I'm definitely not binning it. 

In terms of what to watch out for Meon, one word - Hills.  I recommend practising running both up and down them in the next 3 weeks, the bigger and longer the better.  If you haven't got any near you then do a few mile reps on a treadmill at +5 or above.  Running down them can be equally challenging - there are a couple of very long (1-2m) descents that will fry your quads so any down-hill training will also come in handy. 

Look at the route profile on 2:09's web-site to get an idea of what to expect.  Resign yourself right now to walking up them at some point as I think even those in contention have to at some point.

On kit, it's usually hot and I've done it in normal road shoes every year.  The general consensus is usually that if it rains a lot in the week before then trail shoes might be better.  But only plan for these if you have done some long runs in them previously - I discovered when training for it a couple of years back that mine made my little toes numb after 15m.

It's a great event and the presence of the relay runners means it's never lonely.  Go for it! 

27/04/2010 at 15:58

I am up for this, I really enjoyed it last year and have been heading out to the South Downs regularly for runs ever since. I thought the organisation was great and the atmosphere of the event was brilliant.  

I agree with Woody’s advice about training and shoes. I did it in road shoes last year and was fine.


Some of the views are fantastic and it is well worth taking your time and enjoying them… that’s my excuse and I am sticking to it!   

27/04/2010 at 16:49
can anyone estimate how much longer this would take than a flat marathon? i.e. if I can run 3.35 on the flat, what would be a reasonable estimate for this? 4.15?
27/04/2010 at 17:32

I'm doing my first marathon this Sunday and if I survive I might well be up for this one, love a race on a Saturday as I can congratulate myself better in the pub afterwards.

27/04/2010 at 17:36

woody, you are KIDDING

My fifth??????

hm, first did this in 2006, didnt i

27/04/2010 at 17:37

patrick, its not quite as aggressive as beachy head

My pb for a road mara is 4.16, and im about 5.25 on this but i am crap off road and in heat

4.15 sounds about right for you

27/04/2010 at 18:59

I so want to do this. I ran London on Sunday and am suffereing with an injury sustained from that. If I was fine I'd be out running today. I am so cheesed.

The hill profile for this looks worse than Beachy Head. (which I am doing this year). Do you think it more gentle PH? There used to be a reat fly through of the course, don't know if it's still available.

Beachy Head :- 1585' ascent

South Downs :- 1509' ascent

ah - so much easier.

Patrick - my thoughts - 4:15 would be generous. I ran 3:33 at London and sub 4 on hilly marathons like this.

Edited: 27/04/2010 at 19:01
27/04/2010 at 22:16

Glad to hear from so many fellow runners.

PH, from what I have seen of the views so are stunning.

Woody, thanks for the advise. I've run bits of the last half of the course to get a feel, and planning to run Cocking to South Harting on thursday. But, I think the furthest I've run in my trail shoes is about 8 miles, so will think about what you said there.

Mr.Guy, as this is my first ever marathon, I'm planning on taking my time, just finishing is my goal.

Patrick, sounds like you have it all worked out re timings.

Kate, I'm also planning to celebrate event more so that Saturday.

Bikermouse, I hope the injury passes soon, congrats on London.

I'll keep on training, have got my long Sunday runs up to 16 now, making the weeks total approx 40. Any advise out there for 'the wall' and how is that compounded when its met with a 45 degree hill too :0|

27/04/2010 at 22:46
Toying with this - cos I haven't got a marathon in June .   Would likely have to do it as an away day though so that might be the deciding factor.
27/04/2010 at 23:05

This was my first marathon in 2008 and I loved it.  Beachy was my second 9and likewise). They differ mainly in where the hills are, Beachy has a lot at the end, SDM has quite a stretch on the level along the South Downs Way in the middle though I heard that the route may be changing this year (??).  Harting around the 20 mile point can be a bit tough but the steepest bit (Beacon Hill is it?) is avoided.

 Meon runner  - if you've done the MVP I'd say this was no harder although that may be because the weather is usually better.

Organisation is brilliant with water and gels at checkpoints, coaches to the start from the finish, technical  shirt and on one occasion shoe bag and socks  at the end.  The finish at The QE country park is great if you have support crew or are planning a picnic as most people hang around for a while.  Nearest pubs however are a little further away


28/04/2010 at 07:41

Must say I'm very tempted - can be Kent 50 training. 

Soz Hipps I mentioned the 't' word again!!

28/04/2010 at 14:02
Didn't take long to talk myself into it! Oops!!
02/05/2010 at 10:22

i shall be there, going to be my 5th marathon.

i ran 3.08 at Rotterdam so am hoping for about 3.40 ish.

hope all the training is going well, see you all on the 12th !

02/05/2010 at 11:28

Morning All

I have entered a team for the relay event.

Does anyone have any advice returning handover points? The best way to get runners where they need to be without waiting around too long.



04/05/2010 at 12:08
Ive also run it every year and, having done over 80 marathons, I think this is the best - and hardest - as the views are simply stunning once you are up on the ridge. But then I am biased, because I simply love the South Downs.
Tommygun2    pirate
04/05/2010 at 12:23

Hmm I thinking about this, but I have not run further than 10 miles since the Brighton Marathon though.

Is 4 week going to be enough time to re build to the distance.

Oh I ran/Walked the Grizzly earlier in the year so think I sould be able to manage the off road course.

Edited to put walk in

Edited: 04/05/2010 at 12:24
04/05/2010 at 13:29
C'mon Tommy. If I can do it then you can! OK I will (hopefully) have done Halstead and Embra between Brighton and this but it's all off b*gger all training.
05/05/2010 at 14:03

Does anybody know if this sells out? I have a 33 mile race on the 15th then a 10k the next day and I should make sure I get through those uninjured before I enter but I don't want to miss out.

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