Chris is a local to Lichfield, and has been striving for a sub 1:30 half marathon for a while.
He's been working hard, and has a shiny new Garmin to play with to help him in his training.
Did it work? Our Roving Reporter caught up with him to find out!
I love Lichfield Half Marathon as I get to roll out of bed and onto the the start.
The countryside around Lichfield is beautiful and I know many parts of the course from the long runs I do in training. So I was glad when I turned up to see a good few Shabbas had decided to attend.
Conditions on the day were perfect not too hot with just a bit of breeze. Everyone was seemed in good spirits although Greg was a little concerned about an Achilles problem he seemed to brush it off.
At the start despite talking sub 90 pace and tactics previously everybody shot off & I was left on my own at the back! Mind you I think we all knew that was going to happen.
Although it wasn't so bad as it gave me chance to run with all of the Shabbas who attended (except Tammy who wisely had decided to run her own pace further back) when I eventually managed to catch up with them.
The support was fantastic with many familiar faces showing up and to my amazement at mile 9 there was Mr & Mrs Shabba Byron & Melissa with Baz & Marie! I couldn't believe they were all in a fit state to make it the day after their wedding! They cheered us so loudly I could still hear them at mile 10! Don't think I've ever smiled so much in a race before.
I was certainly smiling at the end though. I knew I was on for a good time but when I crossed the line under 1hr 27 I was over the moon. I had hoped just to scrape in under 1hr 30 so was pleased all my hard work had payed off!
Mr Collis is pleased as punch, as he should be.
It's now three days later, and he's still grinning, and passing on 'good vibes' and smiles with every tweet and Facebook post he does, and it's fantastic to see!
Chris, you've put a grin on the face of this Roving Reporter, just watching how happy you are - well done, SHABBA!
Tammy works hard at her running, but also in other areas of her training and is someone who our Roving Reporter admires for her commitment, strength and big heart.
She's very kindly shared her day with us, and when you've read it, I hope you'll agree with me too!
The Lichfield half was of mixed emotions for me. As it's only my second half marathon distance I wasn't sure what to expect as my first experience was the Great Bupa Run Birmingham. Lichfield in comparison was much quieter, lonely even at times but tougher in many ways despite the route being rated as one to achieve a PB. I had this particular event in mind for a while but held back in entering until I knew for certain my husband Simon would be there to support me (as he always aims to do so) Simon and my close family understand how important it is to me to continually improve myself and to compete again my previous times so the pressure was on for me to best my Birmingham time of 2:18:58. My aim was to run steady 10 minute miles to give me a time of just over 2 hrs 10. Once I had entered the event I planned out a 4 week training schedule but on the 3rd week I had a throat infection which thwarted my last week of training. Despite this the rest from training made me feel strong and fairly confident I'd achieve my aim.
After meeting the other Shabbas on the day and discussing team tactics, and of course getting group photos done I was ready to meet some other runners I knew who were running at the same pace, at the start line. Garmin at the ready and shoe laces tightened and double knotted I was ready to begin my journey. After seeing my family supporters I settled into a steady 9 and a half minute mile pace. Feeling strong I switched myself off into my 'zone' and enjoyed looking around to see the fancy dress charity runners. Among me on the day we're the Incredible Hulk, Buzz Lightyear, Dick Whittington, a big Man Baby and various fairies. It was shortly after 5 miles I hung back from the others I had run with that I started to feel an unknown pain in my left hip that I've not experienced before.
I stopped at the drink station to take in some fluid but realised after mile 7 this pain was not going to go away.
Miles 7 - 9 I was trying to convince myself why I was even running this today and could I even do this?? I dug deep and thought about the previous half I had completed and talked myself right back out of this negativity, that I was here to do a job, the job of continually trying to improve myself and no one else.
Miles 10 - 13 seemed tougher and tougher and at a few points I walked as I kneaded my hip pain. The 2 hour 10 mark slowly ticked past me but I still had 7 minutes to play with. I looked around me, got my head down and made my way through the final distance. As I turned a corned I saw my mom shouting and cheering me on to the finish line. It was then I saw my children and supporters that I was just happy I'd carried on and made them proud, again! Because to them, I AM Wonder Woman. The supermom who strives to be everything she doubted she could be. And you know what, as long as I inspire those around me to be the best that they can be, I'll take that.
Time completed in 2:17:45. So that's a PB from last year's half. I did it but it felt bitter sweet somehow.
Thanks to Ron Reynolds for showing up on the day. I didn't realise it was his birthday until afterwards. He never fails to turn up and take amazing shots as usual.
It's easy for this Roving Reporter see the good in Tammy's race, I'm not emotionally tied into it the way she is, but I hope she's starting to see the positives - because, she did something special - she battled pain, and herself and won. I'd like to run like Tammy when I grow up!