The Elmbridge 10k, which is part of the Ranelagh Harriers 2007 Road League of races was held today, Sunday, in rather humid conditions. The forecast rain did not arrive which didn’t really matter and a field of over 520 runners took off. The first 5k was all on road, then you turn onto the towpath besides the River Thames and then run 5k back to the finish.
It was a flat fast course and I wanted to get my third sub-40 minute 10k in a row (the last two being in May of this year). I set off fairly strong and paced myself brilliantly (if I may say so myself!) throughout. The first k was run in around 3:48 - a touch too quick but that often happens. I just needed to settle down and relax - well, as much as you can in a race!
I got to 5k in 19:35 which if I kept to the same pace would give me a 39:10 finish - one that I’d be very happy with. However, the second half is on the towpath and not the road, and the surface isn’t as “grippy” as the road. On the other hand, this was the run back home and I run a fast 5k race most Saturdays so just had to push hard as I knew the end was in sight.
Not a single person came past me in the second half - in fact any that got past me in the first part of the race I had pretty much got past by the 5k mark. This did strike a little fear in that I’d been pushing too hard too soon but you need to get rid of these demons, trust yourself and pace yourself to the distance.
As I turned the final corner and caught sight of the finish line the big clock at the line said 38:45 - this was now or never (at least today) so I dug deep - ignored the supporters and ran as best I could. As I crossed the line the clock said 39:00 flat, which was ace, but not as good as the official time of 38:57.
This was 30 seconds quicker than the Bognor Regis Prom 10k from a couple of months ago and I’m really pleased that I’ve now made it sub-39. Now, I just need to keep it up!
Finally, before I hand over to Sharon for her update, here’s my kilometer splits…. (1) 3:48, (2) 3:57, (3) 3:57, (4) 3:57, (5) 3:55, (6) 3:54, (7) 3:55 and (8) 3:55, (9) 3:55 and (10) 3:42. I chose not to wear my heart rate monitor today to see how I got on without something restricting my chest (albeit lightly) and maybe this helped me get a personal best time…. Who knows…
Hello! Sharon here - feeling strangely disappointed about my run today. I must admit after being ill for 10 days (and still feeling poorly) I didn’t really expect to get a PB but it’s always disappointing when you don’t. I kind of had a plan to try to go at 6min/km to get close to 60 minutes but as you will see from the splits, it worked-ish until halfway and then the slowing started (until the final km!).
My kilometer splits were then as follows… (1) 6:07, (2) 5:55, (3) 5:59, (4) 5:56, (5) 6:02, (6) 6:08, (7) 6:16, (8) 6:18, (9) 6:21, (10) 6:00.
The 5k mark was reached at 29:59, which shows me I am not quite near a sub-60 10k yet. It was my goal for the end of the year and I shall still aim for it, the year is a loooong way from over yet! I was exactly 30 seconds slower today than my PB, which isn’t bad considering it was a towpath course. I much preferred the first half of the course along the roads, I am not a big fan of running on the towpath, you seem to waste so much energy on it. Still, I shall no doubt be back next year…
Finally, after finishing the race David took some photos of people in Ranelagh Harriers, The Stragglers and Fetch running clubs/groups and these can be found at our photography site.