MEET THE SPORTSTIKS PACERS

IN THE BRENTWOOD HALF MARATHON 2020

2 HR PACERS

Matt Laffan

What time are you pacing?

2hr / 9:08 min/mile

How many half marathons have you run, including how many Bentwood Half Marathons?

Over 50 Half marathons, this will be my 7th Brentwood half.

What are your PBs

1.37.21 at the Tunbridge Wells

Why are you a runner?

I’ve been a runner for the last ten years since I gave up rugby.

What running moment are you most proud of?

So many memories from running it’s impossible to choose one!

How do you stay motivated to keep running?

I always looking for a new challenge to keep my motivation up. New routes, new races….keep it interesting.

What are your tips for race day?

Tip for race day… say hello to your pacer, we are there to make your day special and get you to that time goal.

Anything else you’d like people using your pace to know about you?

Come and say hello to me at the start, If you have any worries talk to me, we are there to make your day a success. And smile its supposed to be fun!!

Andrew Leonard

What time are you pacing?

2hr / 9:08 min/mile

How many half marathons have you run, including how many Bentwood Half Marathons?

I have run over 20 half marathons and 6 full marathons to date. I have another 4 halfs and 2 full marathons planned for 2020.This will be my second Brentwood Half, I tried 3 years ago as well but it was called off due to the ‘beast from the east’!

What is your half marathon PB?

1hr 34

Why are you a runner?

I only ‘properly’ started running 4 years ago. I’d always done a few miles a week and played sport to keep fit, but the turning point for me was by first half (Southend) in 2016. From there a friend of mine signed up and completed the London Marathon and thought if he can do it (given their level of fitness!!) I can definitely do it & I’ve not looked back since. I love the freedom running gives you. It gives you the time and space to work out any issues or problems whilst you pound the streets. I also like to challenge myself to improve and I can’t believe I waited so long to start. I would also recommend joining a running club, I belong to Harold Wood Running Club. Clubs are a great way of finding people at the same level as yourself and you can train together too! It gives you an incentive and there’s the social aspect too – sometimes running can be very lonely so being in a group is great motivation.

What running moment are you most proud of?

I would say there are two – completing my first half (Southend) and completing my first full marathon (London). On both occasions, It was remarkable to think I could run so far. London was particularly amazing as the whole experience and atmosphere was brilliant and my family was there to see at several points. Running down ‘The Mall’ at the end was fantastic.

How do you stay motivated to keep running?

I like to challenge myself. Once I have set a certain target time at an event I strive to beat it and train accordingly. I also ensure I put events in the diary so I know what the next target is! Another good tip is to fund raise for a charity – particularly is if you have a personal cause.

But I just love getting out and having a run – I don’t think I’ll ever stop. Plus, I have a particular goal in mind – I want to complete all the Abbott Majors within the next 5 years. I will have completed 3 (London, Berlin & NY)  by this year – with 3 more to go (Chicago, Tokyo & Boston).

What are your tips for race day?

Firstly, don’t stress, you can never predict conditions on the day so adapt accordingly. If you had a target time in mind and it’s not looking likely – then don’t worry  – there will always be another event! Remember the goal is to complete – not worry about the time!

Secondly, be prepared. Ensure you have all your items ready the night before and hydrate and eat accordingly.

Lastly, ensure you get to an event with plenty of spare time. You don’t want to be rushing around and getting stressed. Try to enjoy the occasion!