10:05AM, Friday 11 July 2014
It is time for runners to start limbering up for The Pharmalink 2014 Maidenhead Half Marathon.
The event on Sunday, September 7, is just over eight weeks away.
Event organiser Purple Patch Running, headed by husband-and-wife team Claire and Chris Donald, has encouraged people to sign up and help make its fourth year the biggest yet.
Claire said the course - from the town centre to Cookham and back - was ideal for experienced athletes and novices alike.
Its flat 13.1-miles along closed roads helped it to be voted third in the personal best potential category in the Runners World Races of the Year awards last year.
"It's got the potential to be a great course for competitive runners and newcomers," said Claire.
"To have that on your doorstep is a great opportunity."
She added the race is now the registered race for the Association of Running Clubs half marathon championships and the Berkshire County Road Running Championships.
As well as the main race, there will be a one-mile mini marathon for ages 13-17 and a half-mile micro marathon for ages seven to 11.
The Donalds encouraged entrants who have been ever-present at each of the three previous half marathons to keep at it, ahead of plans to recognise them at next year's fifth anniversary event.
They also asked residents to continue their 'fantastic' support by lining the streets in their droves to cheer on competitors.
Pharmalink Consulting, based on the Vanwall Business Park, is the event sponsor for the third year in a row.
Maidenhead children’s charity the Link Foundation is also the charity of the race once again.
Entries close on August 31.
Chris Donald, head coach at Purple Patch Running, has put together a training plan for runners looking to improve their times.
The schedule runs for eight weeks - which means starting on Tuesday if you've entered this year's event on September 7!
This plan is for runners looking to finish the 13.1 mile course in less than two hours and 30 minutes.
If you have not run a half marathon you can predict your time using the table below based on 10km race times.
And here is your running diary for week one.
Rest – Either have a complete rest from physical activity or do something non-weight bearing such as swimming or cycling.
Easy – nice relaxed run at the pace indicated in the appropriate column. Could probably chat away if running with someone.
The sub-1:30 and sub 2:00 schedules can be found on the Pharmalink Maidenhead Half Marathon race page.
If you have any doubts about your level of fitness it is advisable to check with your doctor before you undertake any programme of physical activity.
Most importantly, enjoy your training and have a great race!
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