More than 5000 people pounded the streets as a raft of fitness fanatics took part in the Morrisons Great Edinburgh Run – bringing colour to the Capital on an otherwise drizzly morning.
The event yesterday saw enthusiastic competitors of varying ability tackle the demanding ten-mile course, winding their way uphill and downhill through the city’s roads and walkways.
The tiring route began at Holyrood Palace and took runners back into the city centre and past some of the Capital’s most iconic sites, before circling back over George IV Bridge and finishing up where it left off.
Trainee lawyers Aoife Cuddihy and Catriona Macdonald were both taking part in the event for the first time after months of preparation – but any nerves they might have had about their performance on the day were laid to rest as they secured impressive results of one hour 35 minutes and one hour 22 minutes respectively.
Aoife, 25, from Newhaven, said: “It was really fun. The start was difficult because there were so many people, but once it thinned out it got a lot easier.
“The Pleasance part of the course was the hardest, because you’ve done five miles but you know you’ve still got a long way to go. But for every uphill, there was a downhill afterwards.”
Catriona, 24, who lives in Marchmont, added: “It was a challenging course, but really worthwhile. It was quite showery for some of the route, but it was actually a good temperature. It was probably better like that – yesterday might have been too hot.”
Elsewhere, experienced runner Michael McIntosh was using the route as a warm-up to tackling the UK’s largest ultramarathon between Carlisle and Newcastle Quayside next year.
The 53-year-old, from Gorebridge, said: “I enjoyed it, but I don’t know what time I did it in yet. I was trying to slow my pace down as I’ve got an ultramarathon next year that’s 69 miles. But I enjoyed this one. I’ve done a lot of runs in Edinburgh. I think the bit around Duddingston Loch was the hardest, when you just know you’ve got that uphill bit to go.
“But it’s a friendly group of people all doing the same thing. People will just ask you how you’re getting on. It was a great atmosphere – that’s what I like about this event.”
Martin Harrod, from Morningside, also praised the event’s organisation and atmosphere.
The 54-year-old said: “It was great fun. There was a fantastic amount of support with lots of people out to watch, which was really nice and helped us keep going. It was a cold day – but really well organised.”