My first (10k) running race

Last Sunday I ran my first proper 10k event. It was one of my two goals for 2019:

  • Run a sub-20 minute 5k parkrun
  • Run a timed 10k event

The Marriott’s Way 10k run actually turned out to be the Marriott’s Way 10k race, which to be honest a bit of a shock as I noticed this after I had entered…

I guess I should have really paid more attention when I signed up. Either way it didn’t put me off. The route ran point to point from Alysham to Reepham on the Marriott’s Way (disused trainline)

In the 2 weeks in the run up to the event, I did a couple of 5k and 10k runs in my local woods at different paces and battled an on/off cold. Because of the cold I was unable to make my Wednesday training sessions which was a bit of a worry as I feel I get so much from them.

On race day the heavens decided not only to open, but downpour non-stop with big rain that caused widespread floods across Norfolk and eventually shut some of our roads. I did question whether the race would even be run because it was so torrential.

By the time of the start (I was in wave 3 of 4 – each of 125 runners) I was already soaked through. The Mayor gave a little speech at the start and we all went off.

Finding a pace for something I have very little experience was hard. I had done a faster parkrun the morning before which I struggled through. But I managed to find a rhythm and tucked into 4th place in my wave of runners. I decided to try and keep the guy in front of me in sight and when we caught the backmarkers of the previous wave up, overtaking them gave me a little boost and smaller targets to aim for to catch and overtake.

The water and rain was persistent and didn’t ease for the whole run. This meant that the trail became very waterlogged and puddles formed. People were running on the grass at the sides which I found pretty slippery and more treacherous than running blindly into varying depth puddles. I like to think that my mountain biking adventurousness helped me run through the puddles here. Yay for bikes!

There was a warning given at the start to be careful of the sinkhole that had opened up at 7km and I was thankful to see a man in a hi-viz guarding the hole when I got there.

At the end of the trail the route went onto the road before it came into Reepham marketplace where I was able to pick off a few more backmarkers. I was very thankful for them being there to tow me along as by then I was kinda feeling it a bit as well as being cold and soaked through. Some of the puddles had been over my knees as I ran through them (no exaggeration).

Out of 369 runners I finished in 15th place with a time of 42:44. Incredibly happy with that as my first race and first timed 10k.

Next week it’s the East Coast 10k at Great Yarmouth. A road run with 1000 runners entered!