Great Scottish Run: Half Marathon
The Great Scottish Run takes place late September, early October every year. It kicks off on Super Saturday with the Toddler Dash, Family Mile and the 2k Junior Great Scottish Run then the 10k and half marathon takes place on the Sunday. Runners gather in George Square for all races and the 10k and half marathon take similar routes.
The first sight of St Vincent Street at the start can be a bit off putting but you get carried away with the crowd and the masses around you, so the hill doesn’t feel too bad before you’re hurtling down the other side towards Finnieston. One of the local shops likes to blare out the party tunes before you turn left at the old Anderston Police Station, giving you a wee boost as you head for the Southside.
This will be new territory for first timers as you get to run along the Clydeside Expressway up onto the Kingston Bridge, which can be a test for your legs. If memory serves me right there’s a piper to serenade you as you cross over and if you’re not puffing out your backside, remember to look around and take in the views.
Indicate left, take the East Kilbride turn off then round to your right past West Street Subway and Scotland Street School Museum. It’s then Shields Road before the long slog along St Andrew’s Drive towards Pollok Park (home to Glasgow and Scotland’s first parkrun) which you enter at about 5 miles. Watch out for the speed bumps as you run through the park, they’ve been known to take a runner or two out the game.
After Pollok, it’s along Dumbreck Road and Mosspark Boulevard into Bellahouston park (home to the Jimmy Irvine 10k) before a wee run along Paisley Road West and around the outside of Festival Park. From there, you’re getting closer to the home straight with about 2 miles to go. It’s past the BBC and STV studios and over the Clyde Arc (usually a photographer at the end so get your smiley chops out) then get the head down to Broomielaw and summon your big finish in Glasgow Green.
If you plan on running the Great Scottish Run, have fantastic time. Take something old and warm for the start as you could be standing about for a wee while in the not so hot Glasgow. Black bin bags are great for keeping dry. Go smash it!