After my PB at the Vitality 10K last Monday (Read about it here), I signed up to the Bedford 10k the next day. I knew some of my club mates were doing it and I thought, why not!?? Did I really just say, why not? Do I not remember how hard it was last Monday!? Is it like childbirth? When all the euphoria kicks in, the pain of the event vanishes!!
Date: Sunday 5th June 2016
Time: 9 am
Weather: Cold before the start and although overcast for the entire race, it was quite a nice temperature to run in.
Course: I went to University in Bedford and I frequently drive through it now, to get to my mum’s, so I think I know it pretty well. Wrong! This race took me through some of the lovely areas of Bedford that I had forgotten about and reminded me how pretty Bedford can be. We started near Russell Park, which is right on the River. We ran along the Embankment to start, which is very pretty, with some very impressive houses and pubs. We crossed over the bridge and then ran on the other side of the river, close to the Bedford Athletics Stadium and past my old University! Around 5km, there was an out and back, which included some inclines, which was a shock! We ran past the park, where Bedford Parkrun takes place and then through town, finishing long the Embankment, where we had started. It was all traffic-free and fairly flat. There were supporters out in parts, encouraging all participants. The marshals were very good, and very encouraging too.
My race: The early start was not really agreeing with me and prior to the race I completed a little warm-up and actually felt quite sick! I had been ill in the week, so had no idea how this race was going to pan out. I started out too fast (Surprise!) and when my watch flashed up 8:34 for the first mile, I had an internal battle, telling myself that actually I was ok with this pace. I did feel that I was working too hard too early, but went with it! When the next mile passed, I couldn’t decide whether to look at my watch or not. Once I did, I kind of wished I hadn’t. 8:30 pace and I was worrying that I was going to crash and burn towards the end. I tried to listen to my body, and my breathing was ok and my legs were fine, so time to crack on!
The inclines around 5K were a surprise and I really worked hard on them. I find that I overtake people on hills, but my problem is that I then struggle to keep the pace after the hill! I was setting new targets as I was running and I thought it would be good if I could keep every mile under 9 minutes. Mile 4 flashed up as 9:00 exactly and I felt like I was still pushing but 9:02 for mile 5 gave me the kick up the backside I needed. I knew the final section into town was very marginally downhill, so this helped me push on. When you turned left onto the Embankment, it’s easy to think that you were close to finishing, but there was still over 1K left.
I didn’t think I had anything left in me towards the end, but a fast-finishing man really pulled me along and I crossed the line in 54:12! Yay, another PB, but boy 10k’s are tough!
Lesson learned: I am getting faster. Running 10K’s and probably 5K’s, will help me. They hurt like hell when running them, but they help!
- Local event, well organised and easy pre-race
- Fairly flat course, taking me back down memory lane.
- Cheap to enter.
- 9 am start seemed early again, after the late race starts I have had recently.
- Queueing to get the medals and water at the end, but it wasn’t too bad.
- The cheeky inclines around 6K!
Anyone else race this weekend?