7Pools Run

Yesterday I did my 10k route but kept off the gas going round at a fairly easy 6.50 min mile pace, in case I wanted to do the race the following day.

In the end I did decide to do the race today, mainly because I felt that a run at race pace would make up for the lost mileage earlier in the week more than a long distance training run would. As the race was in Sutton Park it was only a 10 minute drive away. I have done the race once before, probably about 12 years ago as a junior although the start back then was in a slightly different place. The course is a multi terrain race, starting on the roads before sections of mud, grass, gravel and stony paths. Its supposed to be about 10k, but I don't know how accurate the distance is. It was thankfully dry throughout with bursts of sunshine making it a bit humid at times.

At the start we had the usual loons going off like a headless chicken and in fact the pace was surprisingly quick. I had aimed to do a slowish start and come through as I knew the course would be quite tough and undulating. In the end I went half way and went a bit faster than I was going to but still at a reasonably comfortable pace. Only after a km or so did things begin to settle down a bit and I was roughly in about 10th place heading off the road section into the cross country section.

Very soon after I had overtaken a couple more people which placed me 8th with runners strung out ahead up to the leading group of three about 50 metres ahead of me. After about 2.5 km I had overtaken a couple more people and was roughly the same distance behind the leaders. As we headed up one of the grassy hills I managed to move into 5th and then suddenly fourth as the runner just ahead of me suddenly stopped. Although I was feeling reasonable I could also sense the run in my legs from the last couple of days. I don't think it massively slowed me down although I could certainly perceive I was not as sharp as usual.

One thing that I'm not sure on was my choice of footwear. I went for my trail shoes as opposed to trainers as I knew the forest section of the course would be very muddy and slippy, and just accept that my trail shoes wouldn't be that good on the road sections. As it was turning out it was very slippy anyway so I'm not convinced I made the right choice and I was certainly the only one to opt for trail shoes.

Heading towards half way one of the leading three was falling back a bit and the other two leaders were pulling away from me, about 75 metres ahead at this point. Bit by bit I was reeling in third place before I overtook him and I pushed on heading into the muddy and undulating forest section. In the forest I really couldn't see anybody in front or behind me so it was almost like a time trial. Very briefly at around 7km I briefly saw the chap in second and I was only about 20 secs behind him and slowly catching him or so I thought. Over the next couple of km I tried to reel him in, but I think it was at this point the training over the last couple of days had left my legs a little bit too flat. Although I probably got to within 12 seconds of him I was catching him too slowly and in the end he was never within any danger. I was also concerned that I could hear clapping behind me which is a surefire way of telling that somebody wasn't all that far behind.

In the end I finished a comfortable third place out of roughly 500 in a time of around 35.30. If it is an accurate 10k then I'm quite pleased with my time as its only a minute off my pb from last weekend especially considering its a cross country course that is quite muddy and undulating. It was only meant to be a training race so I'm happy with the result. I've now got two weeks to the Stratford Half although my knee and right calf are still causing me some serious cause for concern.

There will be some free photos, so i'll post these online, hopefully within the next day or two.


  1. Well Lloyd coming on great it seems ...so envious of your dedication ...commitment to injury and body abuse etc. You shouold be really pleased with the progress you have made in the last few months.

    Keep working hard and listening to the old body with half an ear.....



  2. Absolutely fantastic time Lloyd, no way I could ever match anything even close!!

  3. Yeah keep it going mate... the training is the hard bit and yes it hard to keep the motivation going sometimes. I find the same. We both have similar mindsets in what we want to achieve and nothing we do will ever be good enough!

    I did 3hrs 35mins it the marathon on Sunday. When I crossed the line I was elated! Now I'm thinking, right, can I get myself down to a sub 3 hours 20mins marathon? We're our own worst enemies. However one thing is for certain, it's about beig consistent and just getting out there and doing it. When you look back at your training, you want to be able to look back and say that you did everything you said you were going to do. That's how I'm judging myself at the moment, just get out there and do the graft. I learnt a lot from my marathon, even though I ran beyond my own expectation. I learnt how valueable interval is. The amount of people I passed in the last 5kms I was pretty shokced at, and it was then I realised how much those interval sessions meant, as that's where my strengths came to force in that last 5kms. Anyway, I'm going on... chin up mate, keep doing what you're doing as that's what counts... consistency. And keep having those massages. I'm booking one for every month now on, as it made the world of difference to me, and yes it;s because of the high milage!


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