Fradley 10k

Although I haven't stopped thinking about the Marathon des Sables (which is still two years away!) I had a 10k race at Fradley to distract me today. The weather was dry and sunny with a temperature of around 13oC. There was a moderate cooling breeze which couldn't be felt for the most part except on a small section of the course when you were running into it head on. The course was mainly flat on country roads, but there were a few long gradual inclines here and there.

During the week I felt that I was running around 36 to 36.30 pace though training is one thing, doing it is another! I did write the target times for each km that would equal 36mins overall on a piece of card to carry, rather than having to work it out as I went round. The start went off pretty much on time and I was near to the front for the first km but soon settled down to a more suitable pace. I went through the first km in around 3.00 mins - I think the markings were slightly dubious! I felt reasonable and decided to tag onto a small group of three other runners. For the next three km I stayed with them but gradually felt that I couldn't keep that pace for the remainder of the race. At about 4km I dropped back and suddenly began to struggle at around 5km going through in a time of around 17mins. I knew I had gone off way too fast at this point and was really struggling to just keep going. I was too knackered to look at the pace card so just chucked it away. I was also too tired to get a drink from the water station, though I didn't feel thirsty anyway.

At the end of the first lap I reckon that I was around 15-18th, but now loads of people began to overtake me and I was struggling with my breathing and my legs felt heavy. Over the course of the next lap I just got slower and slower and ended up finishing in a time of 36.23 so meant I did the last 5k in 19.23. This shows that I went off far too fast and paid for it dearly as the last 4k was a major struggle. I don't recall overtaking anyone beyond the first kilometre of the race.

Overall my time of 36.23 was a new pb (previous best was 38.00 minutes) and good enough for 29th place. I have mixed emotions; in some ways I'm pleased that I have smashed my personal best by over one and a half minutes showing that my training is making a real difference. However, as with my last two races it was clear that I didn't pace myself properly - had I done so I might have been able to run 36mins. I need to keep telling myself though that this is only my second 10k and that I don't train specifically for this distance unlike most around me, so am never quite sure what pace I am running. I am sure that this will come with time. One of the other positives was that my knee felt good without even so much as a small niggle (though perhaps I was too knackered to feel it!) My right calf does feel very tight - I don't think it is going to be a major problem, but will need to keep an eye on it to make sure it does not progress into anything major. After the race I bumped into Mike Barnby who was also running and finished in a good time of around 40.25.

Next week I have the first round of the Compass Sport Cup at Hay Wood. Having run a night event there before I don't think the terrain is best suited to my style so am not expecting much, but none the less I'll try my best. The following week I have another 10k at Carterton in Oxfordshire.


Popular posts from this blog

Spine Race - Some Stats (2012-2024) - Updated following 2024 race.

Ranger Ultras - High Peak 100k

Ranger Ultras Pennine Bridleway 270km