Active Travel



Edinburgh Marathon Festival 10K

May 30, 2013 | Active Travel, Race Recaps, Race-cations | 6 comments

Two race recaps in a week, lucky you!

When my cousin asked me a couple of months ago if I would run her first 10K with her in Edinburgh I jumped at the chance. I love any excuse to run with friends and family, and if there’s a medal at the end of it, well all the better! It would also give me the excuse to be in Edinburgh for the marathon festival and cheer my uncle on, running his second marathon.

My plan was to get the train up on Friday evening, arriving into Edinburgh at 10.20 for an earlyish night. Sadly National Express East Coast trains had other plans. After a 3 hours delay outside Grantham, and being booted off our broken train at Berwick-on-Tweed for a hour and a half, we finally crawled into Edinburgh at 4am. Huge taxi queues, and a cash point stop off meant that I didn’t make it into bed until 4.45am… with an alarm set for 6.40am!

Luckily when I woke up I had that ‘am I still drunk’ feeling you sometimes get with a hangover + too little sleep. So I felt great, the sun was shining, and I had some pb on toast with a mini pain au chocolat for breakfast, what more could you ask for (except more sleep!!) Wearing my new Sweaty Betty Mermaid leggings– they look awesome but sadly don’t have any pockets, and I wish I’d bought a smaller size as I did a lot of pulling them up whilst running!

We arrived super early to the EMF ‘hub’, went to the loo a few hundred times before heading to the start line. We had pink bibs on, which seemed to be the third group setting off out of five. It was a well organised start without masses of overcrowding.

On the train I had spoken to two ladies that had run the Edinburgh 10K last year, and they said it was very hilly for the first 2.5K. Well, they were wrong. It was very hilly for the WHOLE race.

NO, we did not run up Arthur’s Seat


I suggested to Lucy that she might want to adopt the Run/Walk approach to the race, especially with all the hills. The aim was to run as much of the flats and downhills as she could and walk the uphills, and when she needed to.

The course itself was beautiful, and I took full advantage of the walking breaks to snap some pictures. It was a completely clear day and you could see for miles- I didn’t know that Edinburgh was so close to the sea!

We looped around a couple of lakes, along a bike path and around Arthur’s Seat. I could not stop gasping at how amazing the views were. I’ve never seen Edinburgh look so gorgeous.

My Aunt and Uncle were along the course cheering us on, as well as a number of other spectators. We were lucky to be able to get some water from them, as there was only one water station along the course and it was pretty warm out.

Lucy really struggled with blisters from her shoes throughout the race, although I didn’t realise how bad they were until we stopped at the first aid tent later, I just told her ‘mind over matter’, the sooner we finish, the sooner you can take off your trainers.

Our original plan had been to finish around the 1 hour mark, but with the extra obstacles of the day, I adjusted the goal and told Lucy she was finishing in 1.15, and to really push it down the final straight. No one was really cheering in the last bit, and because I wanted Lucy to have an awesome finish, I started cheering for her during the final 100m- which quickly made the spectators and runners make some noise. The lady next to us started shouting ‘cheer for us’ as we ran past!

We crossed the finish line together in 1.15.09.

And headed straight to the medical tent where I discovered the extent of Lucy’s blisters! They were huge- I felt so bad for pushing her to keep running (and for taking photos of her in the medical tent, whoops!).


So proud of Lucy for finishing her first race, first 10k and her longest run. I hope the heat, hills and blisters hasn’t put her off another race!

The rest of our time in Edinburgh was spent eating, drinking, having a manicure, napping and wishing the marathon runners good luck. Overall I really enjoyed the 10K, although I think if the weather hadn’t been so glorious it could have been a little miserable. The 5K course followed a different route but seemed to include the hilliest bits- not exactly a PB course but a challenge, plus it will give you a different view of Edinburgh. It was a brilliantly organised race, although given the heat, could have benefitted from another water station. It isn’t a race I’d recommend as your first, as it is rather hilly, but a great one for those coming to Edinburgh for the EMF that don’t want to run a marathon! I also highly recommend climbing up Arthur’s Seat at some point during your trip! You can always treat yourself to a deep fried Mars Bar afterwards, or not.


  1. Leah

    Congratulations Lucy!! Oh my gosh, blisters have to be the worst – she did so well to keep going through all of that. And those hills – they look pretty steep!

    I love Edinburgh, what a beautiful city (and day) to have run in!

  2. Jessica

    haha I did this race two years ago and for some reason I thought the course was flat (as is the Marathon) so I told everyone doing it with me that it was flat. We got a hell of a shock within about 1k, I still remember it and my husband still pulls my leg about it

  3. Victoria Brandon

    Well done both of you. Fantastic! Looks like Lucy needs seem proper running gear maybe to match your SB leggings! I’m sure your readers would have beeninterested to know this was the city of your birth….

  4. Polly Farrington

    Those leggings are freakin’ amazing! Great photos, Edinburgh was indeed looking beautiful that weekend.

  5. Ffion

    Train are so annoying sometimes! Looks like a very picturesque race though. Hopefully heading to Ediburgh this month, going to go up Arthurs Seat!

  6. lisaclairebruce

    I’m glad I’ve just come across this- I’ve been swithering about signing up for the 5K or 10K in the Edinburgh Marathon Festival this year as a first race and it’s all those hills that are totally putting me off!



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