Air Products 10k, Crewe

This year I decided not to go to the JK Orienteering festival weekend (mainly down to cost) so decided to do a 10k at Crewe instead. I felt quite tired when getting out of bed - mainly due to the sister not getting back until 1am then having a sleep over...

The day was warm at about 16-18 degrees which was a little too warm for my liking when running at speed, but bearable none the less. The race had a reasonably small field of around 230 and the course was fast and fairly flat with the exception of two moderate inclines on each of the two laps.

Again I carried a 36min pace card with me and was 20 secs up after the first 2k and I felt reasonable and within myself. Just after the second hill after 4k I was 18 secs up but it took a fair bit out of me and my legs were starting to feel very heavy. At 5k I was 10 secs up and I was rapidly beginning to slow. The last 5km was quite a struggle and lost a few places on the second lap eventually coming home in 38.08 (24th) which was disappointing. The first 5km I did in 17.50 and the second 5 in 20.18.

Overall I was slower than my 'benchmark' first 10k in December 06 when I hadn't even started to train, but then again this course was not as quick. Either way I think my tiredness caught up with me a bit and when you combine it with the warmth, blisters again (even though I was wearing compeed underneath!), and the inclines things conspired against me. I have wondered whether my best tactic is like at the Fradley 10k (where I set my pb) to go off as fast as I can for the first 5k and then hold on as best I can for the second half; as even when pacing I seem to tire at the same point in the race.

One of the things I've realised over the last week is that I'm entering too many races so I cant do any meaningful training in between. Although I've got another 10k next week at Leamington which I pre-entered a while back I've decided to cut back a bit beyond mid May when I can start to do some decent summer training. Between now and then I have entered my first ever half marathon at Stratford-Upon-Avon on 29th April which should be interesting. I've pretty much decided that I will try to run quite conservatively and aim to get round in 1hr30. If I'm feeling good 1hr25 might be possible but I don't want to burn myself out in my first half, especially since I haven't really trained for it. I'll be very interested to see whether I cope with the longer distances better as the 10k's just feel like a sprint, or whether I'll tire as I'm not fit enough. After Stratford I have another 10k just 9 days later, but just couldn't resist the temptation to run round the Formula 1 circuit at Silverstone!! Really looking forward to that one!


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