This morning I ran in the We Love Manchester 10k and it was fabulous!
My aims were to enjoy it first and foremost, to finish it and to run the whole way. I wasn't bothered about time I just wanted to be slow and steady.
I arrived at the Etihad at 8.15 as roads were being closed around it for the run after 8.30am. I felt a right Billy no mates as I'd gone alone but the atmosphere was great and people were friendly.
Decided not to carry water as there was a water station at 5k and at the end.
Left my phone behind but wish I'd had the forethought to take my armband for it so I could wear it while running. I don't listen to music on it while running but it's a handy place to keep it and means I could have taken photos before and after the race around Sportcity and noodled on Facebook while waiting for the race to start. At least I know for next time!
Had a loo stop before the race. There were queues but when I went I only waited about 5 mins.
We were told to go out to the athletics track for 9.15am for a warm up. Great vibe out there. People all up for it. Some ultra keen runners and some novices like me.
We set off at 9.30am and I just kept steady pace and tried to think to myself "run your own race". I got overtaken by loads of people at the start despite having positioned myself about 3/4 of the way down the field!
After the first couple of kilometres I actually started to overtake some fellow participants! Some of whom were running some were walking!
At 5k there was a bottle of water handed to you if you wanted one. I took a couple of gulps then threw it away. I don't normally run with water but thought I'd better take some on board since 10k is the longest distance I've ever run.
Got to 7k and really had to dig deep. I must say that the marshalls were great at cheering us along and I made sure I thanked them as I went past.
By this time fellow runners who had already finished were beginning to stream past shouting us slower ones on. This was great although I did feel a bit jealous that they were already finished and I still had a couple of k to go!!!
The last km was hard. The course itself is not hilly but there are some 'undulations' and the incline on the last k going from the car park area up towards the City Store was a killer!!!
But people were shouting me along and I even had my name called out!
On to the last stretch which was on the athletics track. Loads of support there and I put on a final spurt and then I crossed the finish line!
Collected my medal and goody bag. They'd run out of water which I thought was pretty poor but managed to snaffle a bottle on my way back to the car park.
By the time I got back to my car I had my time text to me: 1 hr 18mins 14 secs
I am so proud and pleased! It was a great experience and I would definitely recommend it as a race. I hope to do it again next year
Just to think at the end of Feb when I started C25k I could barely run for 1minute at a time and now 5 months later, I've just completed a 10k.
Anything is possible if you set your mind to it!!