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There’s no race like home

This weekend I had an improvised addition to my training programme. I have my “official” 10k race upcoming in a few weeks, the one I’ve been training for over the past few months. Training has been going fairly well to plan – the occasional deviation here and there due to other life events and occasion, but largely on track.

This week there was a local 10k race starting and finishing close to my house. I’d seen the hospitality tents, barriers, and finish line all being set up but didn’t think too much about it. It was only when I was chatting to a friend who had entered the 10k for the following day that I was tempted to look it up. And to some surprise, there were places left. 

After an hour or two or internal debate, I registered for the race, and the next morning I was picking up my number, ready for the off. 

This was not part of the plan. Not sure what the plan was now, but it wasn’t run my target distance as fast as I could.

Part of my thinking for running this race was that it’d give me a good idea of my fitness levels, with the advantage that it was a relatively flat course. My pb for the 10k is the hilly race I have upcoming so was confident I could get my fastest time.

In the end, I went round quickly, comfortably beating my previous best by nearly a minute – around 46 minutes. It was hard work though, and I’d clearly gone off too quickly as my splits showed a dramatic slowing of my pace around the halfway point. I managed to recover, and the final 1km was my fastest, as it should be running to the finish in front of a small crowd of well-wishers. 

Overall it was a good experience, but I’m not convinced how much it gave me in my overall training, aside from a reality check. I’m not going to smash my course pb in a few weeks time as I’d secretly hoped, but I think I’m in the right ball park to shave something off it. Two and a half weeks to go…!   

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