Last Saturday, I took part in the Women’s Running 10k race in Finsbury Park, London.
I signed up for this race, wanting to try out a "women's only race" it was so different from all the other races I have ran, the atmosphere was so empowering. As I'm still quite new with running I thought I'd sign up for a 10k race and it was a lovely one, just a bit more hilly than I would have liked.
It was a great way to challenge myself, on a mission to get a new PB. After the BUPA 10,000 in May. I’d been searching vigorously for a race that would challenge myself on a whole new level, and it did just that. As a fellow Women’s Running magazine reader, the series had come up often, and saying that they had a London event soon in their 10k series, was perfect. I signed up right away!
I’m about an hour train journey from Finsbury Park and so I had no excuse once I was granted the Saturday off work. Did I mention the promise of tea, cake along with an amazing medal and goodie bag worth £30, at race end was what had me.
I’m not going to lie, my training didn't go as well as I'd hoped but I kept with it and would run whenever I could, and the help and support I got from my running club ( @HillingdonAC1 ) was amazing, the speed work and endurance sessions really helped, despite the pain in my left knee.
The night the before the race, I finally let myself go to that place and I knew I’d achieve a new PB. I’d woken up at 6am and the pre-race nerves had kicked in before I even got out of bed. It was lovely to meet the October 2014's cover girl Jackie freeman, even snapped a selfie with her and had an amazingly intense group warm up, learnt a few more warm up routines to use in the future.
I had decided that I’d start off in the sub 70 minute group, but wasn't sure if I'd be a bit slow for the group. The race was two 5k laps around Finsbury Park, and WR had mentioned that there were a few hills. They weren’t wrong. I’m glad I’d done some hill work before because otherwise I would have been very under-prepared, although I still don't think it was enough.
I started off alongside the sub-70 minute pacers but after running a 4k at that pace, I found that this was hard to maintain and slowed down slightly as my knee began to feel strange, but that still didn't stop me from getting a new PB.
There would be a water point at the 5k mark, which was great but the bottles were a bit awkward as they didn't have a sports cap so I had to stop for a few minutes to take a sip and continue running.
I liked the fact that the run was two laps of 5k as it made the second lap feel a whole lot shorter as I knew where I was going. Ask I reached the finish line I could hear everyone cheering! Once I was over the line I got my medal, goody bag, t-shirt and most importantly water. I had done it. I honestly couldn’t believe what I’d just done and within minutes of crossing I received a text from the organisers with my time. I’d run the race in 1:14:19, I managed to it 56 seconds off my time although my tracking app said it was 1:13:19. I had got a new PB. Oh well, fingers crossed I got a new one in the 10k in hyde park on October 4th 2014.
After a quick sit down and began eat a tasty bar courtesy of 9bar and a carton of Everything But The Cow (that was tasty, but I can't find them anywhere). There were so many goodies in the bag and I loved the high quality drawstring bag, the organisers had recommended that we stay till the last runner crosses the finish line so I waited and it just intensified the atmosphere as women were empowering women. I felt so proud and as the last runner made her way to the finish with Jackie running alongside her. The last 30 runners and myself waited for her we all ran to the finish line again with her where we were all given extra goodies. Such a lovely close to the series for 2014.
Would I recommend this race to a fellow runner?
Of course. It was amazing, the race was great, the goodies were great, the medal and lastly its women empowering women. What else could you ask for?
Would I run it again?
Of course, I can't wait to find out the dates and sign up again.
Favourite moment of the race?
I've actually got two, firstly finishing the race myself and crossing it again with the last runner. Such an empowering moment for me.
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