Torshavn half-marathon review
This race review is long overdue. I'd kind of forgotten about writing it, to be honest. That's a crazy statement since this race was absolutely gorgeous and not lacking in scenery, sheep, very green grass, friendly people, or HILLS. HILLS. Oh, my was it hilly! I was actually tired from walking around Copenhagen all week (one day I walked 17 miles)and from walking up and down the hills in Torshavn the day before so I knew it was going to be a challenging race.
I met some Canadians about 45 minutes before the race and chatted with them until it was time for the two of us who were running to start. The Canadian woman was from far northern British Columbia and was much more prepared for the hills than I was. She started off behind me but finished about two minutes and thirty seconds before me, and it was her first half-marathon so I was excited for her!
The race itself was an out and back, the first half of the half-marathon was a loop that started in downtown Torshavn, ran towards the harbor (downhill!) and then around some residential areas in a loop of giant hills and curves. I don't know when I decided to start walking up the hills but it was fairly early in the race. They were just so big and my calves and glutes were screaming. I spent most of this race briskly walking or slowly shuffling up the hills and cruising down them at a faster pace but not so fast that I would kill my quads and give myself shin splints. There is a technique to running down hills. I should also mention that this race was entirely a road race, so the hills were all asphalt.
This race did have few spectators, and I can't imagine how the marathoners fared. The most spectators were in town and then we saw sheep. The sheep were not interested in communing with us, but you can see a really cute photo of them on the road with some other runners (and a good looking runner in that Mikkeller Running Club tank) ;)
This race had great support and an appropriate amount of stops for a half-marathon. I do think one would need to be mentally tough to run this as a first marathon or half, due to the lack of spectators. It is not easy to run a small (field) and physically challenging race even for a seasoned runner. This does not mean I did not enjoy it, I would run it again. In fact, I'm hoping to run it again in 2018 and spend more time in the Faroe Islands but visit islands and towns that I did not get a chance to see on this trip. I am really getting ahead of myself though because I don't know what my salary will be or where I will be living at the end of the year let alone, next June.
I'm not sure if I would ever consider the full marathon though, I'm not a masochist.