Hi All (apologies for the long post)
I’ve done it! I’ve ran in my first ever officially organised run and I loved it ;o)
This morning I ran in the Middlesbrough Tees Pride 10K and it just so happened to be the 10th Anniversary this year of my local 10k.
As some of you may know, I nearly had to drop out of this run due to a knee injury but, having visited a sports therapist on Friday, I was adequately reassured that it wasn’t too serious of an injury. Having said that, the previous two weeks hadn’t been an ideal lead up to this weekend as I’d hardly ran at all except for two 3k easy runs to test my knee, but I decided to give it a go anyway.
The night before I had laid out all my running gear and made sure my Garmin was fully charged. I had trouble dropping off to sleep but eventually managed it and was up around 7.30am this morning. The great thing about this 10k is that the start is within walking distance of my home so it was a nice, gentle 10 minute walk to the athletes village ;o) I found myself unexpectedly nervous walking over as this was all new to me. I didn’t know what to expect but there was a heavy metal band playing when I got there so I soon relaxed ;o) There were lots of people milling about and some ‘professional looking’ athletes carrying out some weird and wonderful warm up exercises and stretches which, I think, John Cleese would have been happy using in one of his silly walk sketches ;o)
Before I knew it I was making my way to the start and made sure I was near the back of the field with the ‘just happy to finish’ group. We set off and the adrenalin was flowing but I knew I had to take it easy because I didn’t know whether my knee would be up to it. Worryingly, I had only been running for about a minute when the pain started in my knee. Damn, am I going to even reach 1k! I continued on hoping that the pain wouldn’t get any worse and it seemed as though it wasn’t. Good, I thought, I’ll keep going. Oh, there’s a professional looking photographer up ahead, lets move over so he can get a better shot of me. Click….thanks, that’ll cost me a few quid to purchase later ;o)
I had settled into a nice, easy pace and before I knew it I was passing the 4k marker. Things going well so far, knee not getting any worse, my breathing was nice and slow and I felt good.
My family weren’t able to be with me today but my wife had arranged to be standing outside her place of work (which was at 5k along the route) to cheer me past and it was a timely boost to see her waving as I ran by. Awww, thanks babe ;o)
Spurred on, I started to up my pace a little and at around the 6k mark my knee pain disappeared but this was replaced by pain in both my hips! Hips? I haven’t had pain in my hips before so why now!
Anyway, I pushed on and before I knew it I was at the 9k mark. I felt great. I glanced at my Garmin and to my utter surprise it seemed as though I could be on target to finish close to my current PB of 01:04:14. Pace upped a bit more (nothing like a sniff of a PB to spur you on) and turned onto the home stretch. Stride lengthening and passing some of the other runners, the finish line came in to view. Push Paul, go for it, its going to be close, go on!
The crowd that had gathered along the finish route were clapping, cheering, shouting encouragement which encouraged me to keep going and……………yes, I’d crossed the finish line! I’d done it. I’d completed my first ever organised run. Fantastic! A quick look at my Garmin again and it was suggesting a new PB! Don’t get carried away, Paul. Wait for the text message giving me the official chip time to be certain. YESSSSS, official chip time 01:03:18….a new PB, 56 seconds quicker than my previous PB! How did that happen? I had a dodgy knee; I’d taken it easy; I didn’t feel as though I had ‘really’ pushed myself until the last kilometre or so! Still, I was over the moon ;o)
It had been a great day. Great event, well organised, fun and the buzz was great. In fact, I want more ;o)
Official stats for my run:
Chip time: 01:03:18
Chip position: 1963
Gender position: 1366
Category position (M50): 133
Not bad for an owld git who’ll be 54 in October ;o)