Racing

Thirsk10

First 10 miler in over 2 years

The last time I did a 10 mile race I ran 59:30 in December 2016. That seems a lifetime ago. It’s a distance I’ve only done 6 times over the years and I’ve had mixed results, I’ve had two excellent results, two bad and my first one that was my further ever race at the time. When I was in longer distance from (Dec 2016 – Feb 2017). I set PB’s at 10 miles, half marathon and 30k. I would like to think that all those times are beatable however, I’m also realistic to know that I’m coming off two years of regression in my running road performances and also 6 months off. So at the moment it is about rebuilding and setting a new platform to build upon going forward. While it’s hard I’m trying to to compare myself to who I was 3 years ago. I’m older and definable not the same runner I was then.

After Thursday, I was sore which showed how hard I had run but also I need to rebuild my race fitness. I had entered Thirsk as my comeback race until I remembered the 5k. It was still my first race on a Sunday in 6 months and I almost mentally talked myself out of racing. 90% of the pressure I feel at the start is my own doing. I always wanted to be the best, always want to be faster then yesterday. I will never be one to turn up and do a race for any reason then to be the best possible version of myself in that race. I’m competitive it’s as simple as that. Going in to the race I had enjoyed a nice journey up with family talking about anything and everything. After picking up my number I did have brief chats with other runners. But tried to avoid as many people as possible. I was there with family and didn’t want to keep talking about “race targets” “my daughter” “why I had not been racing” blah, blah, blah. I tried to keep any encounter brief, this wasn’t against anyone but I was there with family and wanted to keep my mind focused. So we walked up to the start. After what seemed like an age I got myself in the pack but by go time I was further back then I wanted but instead of worrying I just relaxed and tried to think about the next 60+ minutes.

After shouting see you soon to family we was off. The road was narrow and it was hard to get going. I had planned on trying to run 10k pace for as long as possible then holding out till the end but the first 3 miles was into a strong headwind and everyone was working harder then they would have liked. Some people run better in wind. With my height there was no hiding and with me having to weave in and out I was just only 6 minute pace. I soon found myself next to Fiona Davis, A quick hello and I pushed on, the first mile in 5:55. Wasn’t as fast as planned but for once I didn’t worry as knew I was into a headwind. I pushed on and I knew as soon as we got to the end of this road it would be out of the wind. However that would be just after mile 3. I did make some moves up the field during the 2nd mile clocking my fastest mile in 5:53.

However I was hovering my pace around 6:00 pace on what should have been a fast mile. Mile 3 to 4 I struggled and had a mental battle to sort myself out. I was silly as I wanted a sub 60 after first two miles but I argued with myself that my target was 63 minutes. So after hitting mile 3 in 6:02 I took on a gel and was glad to be out of the wind, I then seemed to relax and accepted my pace was bloody good and to keep under 6:10 for as long as possible and I would be well under my original target. The next 3 miles flew by and kept a strong pace clocking 6:05, 6:09 and 6:09, I knew I was heading to the out and back part of course and wind would again play an effect. I was right as soon as we turned up the road you could feel wind but it wasn’t until after the 2nd water station that you could feel it. So it slowed my split time for the next two miles as it was back end of mile 7 and first 0.62 miles of mile 8 till turn around. Mile 7 was my slowest in 6:18 but after I hit the turn around I picked up the pace and actually started catching runners. I enjoyed the next half mile as we was passing runners coming other way. Mile 8 was 6:16.

I was still feeling good and after hitting the left turn and headed towards finish I again tired to up the pace, so while it was faster then last two miles still was wrong side of 6:10 but then I hit the final mile and gave it everything for the entire mile. It felt a right drag and I turned into the race course, saw my family and crossed the finish line in 61:03. I was chuffed with my time it was nearly 2 minutes faster then my original target. Writing this and knowing the course, just by making a few adjustments I can go faster; better position at the start, less wind (as slowed my first few miles and again at 7 & 8). It was still my third fastest 10 mile time ever and I defo want to target sub 60 again. I was considering doing the Vale of York 10 next month but it sold out before I could make a decision.

For those following my Xempo standards this was 2nd distance to set a time at. So to get a Yellow vest for 10 miles I need to run sub 61:03. I will be looking at doing a few more this year as I think it’s a distance I rather like. Next up for me now is a 5 mile race at the end of the month and I will now start planning next months races.

Race Stats

  • Position: 53rd
  • Time: 61:03
  • Strava Record: click here
  • Kit Used: Xempo Vest, Adidas Base Layer, Arsuxeo 2in1 shorts, Sockimine Black Griplock Lightweight socks
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