Poole 10km Road Race 2011

June 7, 2011

On Sunday I took part in the Poole 10km road race, part of the Poole Festival of Running.

We arrived at Poole park at around 1:15pm (deciding to leave plenty of time this year, instead of the usual rush to the start line!) and found a spot under a tree to shelter from the rain that was on the way…sure enough the rain arrived at around 1:30pm, nothing heavy, but enough to make it un-pleasent for the brave families and friends who had turned out to offer their support.

I started warming up around 20 minutes before the start, 10 minute jog followed by some light stretching, topped off with an upper body warm up (I always seem to get stiff shoulders/upper arms when running at a pace).

The race started on time as usual – I quickly realised I had placed myself too far back in the pack for my tartget pace of 7m30s p/mile, so spent the first mile carefully passing people. I stepped in a big puddle at one point and splashed a guy as I passed him “Try not to splash” he shouted – I can only guess he was joking as by that time everyone was soaked as the rain didnt hold back.

Everything went well for the first half of the race, I picked up to to a pace of around 7m10s p/mile which felt good, although as a I passed the half way mark I realised quickly I had gone off too fast, my legs were tired, arms were aching and I was struggling to maintain my breathing at a sensible rate.

I decided to take a small break as I grabbed a water and walked for around 20 seconds – trying to regulate my breathing, get the drink down me and then off again, this time at a calculated 7m20s p/mile pace. Everything felt right again so I pushed on, at times flagging slightly, really wanting to slow down (and stop!), but knowing a personal best was within reach I pushed on. As I entered Poole park for the second time, I knew the finish was within a mile away, so pushed the pace up slightly. The kind lady on the final bend who shouted some support directed at me “Come on number 755! Almost there now!” helped alot, I pushed the pace up even more, shortly after which a guy ended up alongside me, telling me he had been trying to keep up with me from the start.

One last push, attempting a sprint (didnt work!) and I was through the finish line with a time of 46m 40s – 29seconds slower than my previous personal best for the race of 46m 11s.

I was pleased with the time, considering the amount of training I had done for the race (not enough), although also somewhat dissapointed, knowing a PB was very possible had I trained a little more. It was good to know I still have a good level of base fitness, so looking forward to commencing my training for the New Forest Marathon in September.

Overall, the Poole 10km road race was as usual a great experience – A very well organised and enjoyable race.

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