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'Can't talk, running' – reporter Rob recalls his half-marathon

Tackling the Hastings half-marathon for the first time proved something of a triumph for Hastings Observer man Rob Meek.

Not the fastest in the field, he romped home slightly lower than 2,000th place.

Scooby-Doo and Piglet (pushing a pram) were among those who passed him, and he was surprised to see many actually running the two miles of seafront to get to the start line!

The amazing support all the way around the course coaxed him on when he felt he had had enough.

And the long downhill section back to the seafront came as a welcome relief.

But he said: “The seafront section was too much. I had given everything and although the mind was willing, the legs wouldn’t respond.

“I’m ashamed to say I walked most of the last few miles and got to the finish line pumping my arms furiously, but walking nonetheless.”

Everyone had warned Rob of the Queensway stretch – about three miles of unrelenting hill, and despite feeling like walking after two miles, no one else had stopped, so he resisted.

He said: “No one had warned me I would have to act as an information point, fielding questions from at least three runners about the length of the hill as I crawled along.

“‘Can’t talk, running’, was my breathless reply. I don’t know what made these people think I was some omniscient marathon guru.

“Despite the aches and pains it was a fantastic day out, brilliantly organised and very well supported.

“And for the record, I completed the course in 2h 8m.”