Goal 2 for the year was achieved at 7:30pm tonight when I made it to the start line for the Yateley 10K. Good running conditions too, with temperatures around 14C and no rain, although there was a bit of a breeze.
Having run this race a few times, I know the elevation profile for the course and therefore have a good idea of the relative pace each mile can be run. I'd trained to run just under 1 hour so I set my stall out to run splits of 9:30, 9:40, 9:20, 9:30, 9:40, 10:05, and 2:00 for the last .21 mile which would bring me home in 59:45.
There was a good atmosphere at the start with lots of banter to settle the nerves and we were soon off. I always forget just how up and down the first mile is which makes it difficult to run at a target pace and I probably overdid it by running 9:11 for the first mile. The second mile begins with a steepish hill before gradually levelling out so I knew I'd slow but managed to complete it in 9:17. Mile 3 has some long downhill stretches interspersed with a couple of short but steep hills and I managed to complete it in 9:00.
I was well ahead of schedule but still feeling that I was controlling my pace well, even running slightly within myself. Mile 4 which is largely level, maybe a tad downhill, was completed in 9:12. During this mile I felt my right buttuck (sorry, don't know what that muscle is called!) tighten and this began to bother me, mentally as much as anything. I just kept my head down and tried to maintain my pace. Mile 5 is a slight incline and I thought I would start to struggle and although I was definitely starting to tire, I was still strong and gaining confidence and completed it in 9:13.
Mile 6 has a nasty hill for about a third of a mile and it was quite an effort to get up it without losing too much pace but once at the top I sped down the other side to complete the mile in 9:24. From that point on, I drove as hard as I could to the line finishing much to my delight in 57:03. Typically, I was actually disappointed not to dip under 57 minutes!
My buttock has stiffened up slightly (I'm sure you all wanted to know that) but I don't think it's too bad so hopefully it won't affect my training schedule too much.
I'm really chuffed. It's taken quite an effort to regain my fitness after last year's lows. Although my time tonight was 6 minutes outside my PB I'm probably more proud of today's run than any of my previous efforts.
Enjoy your running!
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