Race Recap – Vitality London 10,000

If you are a regular reader, or follow me on social media, you will know that I didn’t know (remember) that I was running this race until about 2 weeks ago. I wasn’t looking forward to it too much, but I went and the result was unexpected!

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Date: Monday 30th May 2016 – Bank Holiday Monday, what else would you do with an extra day off!

Time: 10am – A nice start time, meaning that the alarm didn’t have to be set for silly o’clock, but after an awful nights sleep on an inflatable

Weather: It was actually really chilly and windy, when I arrived at Green Park, and I was shivering lots at the start. I wore a t-shirt under my MNDA vest and was still cold. That was until we started running, and then I soon found that, out of the wind, and running I was actually too warm with both layers on. (Maybe this explains my extremely red face!)

Course: As I continually say, I LOVE running in LONDON! It’s just such an amazing City.

IMG_9782We started on the Mall, then ran out towards Trafalgar Square, along the Strand and toward St Pauls. We then turned and headed back, but as we approached Trafalgar Square, we turned onto Whitehall, running past Downing Street, turning right and then finishing directly in front of Buckingham Palace. Amazing sights and a very flat course. I can remember some slight declines, but bizarrely can not remember the slight inclines that must have been there! There were plenty of places where you could watch the speedies on the other side of the road, which I like. There were 2 water stations that I remember, I think around 3km and 7km??? The race was started in waves, I was the second wave to go, and it was quiet crowded in places.

My race: I had been really worried about this race. I haven’t run a 10k in quite a while, and I was sure that I didn’t have any speed in my legs. I was concerned that I was going to go off too fast and then have to walk or it really hurt; that or I was worried I would take it too easy and then be disappointed with my time. I was feeling really stressed about it, and I feel I kind of went into self-destruct. I wrote about my negative mindset, I then decided to drink cocktails, beer and have a curry the night before. Now looking back, I feel like I was just preparing all the excuses for not running a great race! Stupid really, no-one can PB every race! I didn’t have the best nights sleep, and I think in some ways, this helped – I had an excuse if I didn’t run well!

I arrived at Green Park really early which allowed me to bag a Vitality Beanbag and chill for a while, I decided then, that I was going to wear my Garmin, but not look at it at all during the run.

When I realised I was in the second start wave, I did start to worry again, that I was going to start too quickly! When we finally started, I kept telling myself that the first 2k was going to be tough as I had to relax in to my run. I felt like I was running faster than normal, but I kept thinking it was comfortably hard. At 4km, I had a little wobble mentally, thinking I was going too fast and I would fade at the end. I talked myself round, realising that I was still ok, and if I could relax during the next 4km, keeping a decent pace, but not working too hard, if I had anything I could start pushing then.

By the time I got to 8KM, my inner voice said ‘actually just try to maintain this pace! I felt like I was working hard, but then another runner turned to me and told me to keep going and not to walk! I then panicked, was I going that slow? Did I really look like I was struggling? I looked around, and everyone around me still seemed to be moving well and I was keeping up with them!

When I turned right out of Whitehall, all my London Marathon memories came flooding back. I had hoped that I could put in a bit of the sprint towards the end, but had to make do with head down, grit teeth and survive until the end!

I stopped my watch as I crossed the line, and looked at it hoping I had sneaked under the hour mark, and was so shocked when I read 56:02. That is a PB, but I have now had the official time and I am now the owner of a brand new 10K PB of 55:59  🙂

10K’s are hard and I can’t say I particularly enjoy them whilst I am running, but it was nice to be finished a race in under an hour!

Lesson learned: I need to avoid the self-destruct button and just accept whatever will be, will be! I also quite like not looking at my watch. I know that I would have freaked had I seen the mile pace flash up with 8:xx. I would have definitely slowed down and been concerned that I would fade at the end.

Pros: 

  • It was LONDON baby!
  • Well organised and the event ‘village’ being in Green Park meant there was lots of space.
  • FLAT course, nice medal and finishers t-shirt.
  • 10am start.
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WOW – why am I SO red!!!!!?

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Cons

  • There were plenty of toilets, but the volunteers were not really directing people correctly. Everyone was joining one queue, as it looked the only place to queue, but it worked out to be the queue for one section of toilets! I was lucky I had time, but I probably queued for about 15 minutes, but had I and other been directed on further I am sure it would have taken as long!
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Any idea where the queues start and finish?
  • Busy course, but then you will always get that at the big races.
  • It’s a 10K and they hurt! hehe

I think this is definitely going to be on the calendar for next year, and possibly the Westminster Mile too!

Anyone else race this weekend?

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