Wowee, on Sunday I did the Lee Valley 10k. I wanted to beat my personal best, which is 1hr 02 mins at Whitstable. I expected to be 1 hr, or 1 hr 01.
There wasn't a very good turn out (the organisers thought it might be because they had to bring it forward a month - it's usually in July), I wanted to be near the back as I'm quite a slowish runner but due to the low turn out I didn't need to cut as far back from the start line as I'd expected to. I started off nice and slow and a lot of people overtook me. For some reason one lady in particular stood out, she was about my build but more muscle-y and I remember thinking that although she must be a lot more powerful than me I wondered if I might catch her up later...
After a short while I found my pace and there were two women I was keeping up with. One in front, who had over taken me and hadn't quite made any further progress and another much closer who I noticed was a lot older than me, but thought that she must have a lot more experience than me so didn't want to push myself to be any faster at this stage. However after the 2nd km I felt like going a bit faster so I overtook her and started to pursue the girl in front. As I overtook her I turned a corner and there was my hubby and little girl to support me which made me really smile. It would've been awesome if little girl had called out "Mummy!" but she didn't so maybe next time...
After getting over the excitement of seeing them I continued at my pace. I couldn't quite believe it, I carried on overtaking until I reached a long gap but kept going. I passed some walkers who said to me I'll catch those further on before long and they weren't kidding! I pushed over the bridge and there they were right there in front of me, just a few bends later I was overtaking them too! I couldn't believe it! I kept going and another few bends later I saw her - the my-build-but-a-little-more-muscle-y-lady! I was really surprised, it was only the 6th km as I passed her.
From that point I started to get pretty tired but I coached myself into believing I was on the home stretch and that I can do it, I simply must keep the pace. I was wearing my iPhone with mapmyrun activated so I knew that if I kept my pace up I would make my target of under 1hr 02.
A few bends later and I met my match - I overtook two ladies when pushing up a slight hill to a bridge over the Lee Navigational (this is all thanks to hills session with Steve Rich and speed sessions with Nick at Thrift Green Trotters) but they soon overtook me back and I remained behind them for the rest of the way back. We overtook a few more men, one in particular was really nice, he said well done to me as I passed him and I returned the compliment. He then also remained behind me, I knew this because as we turned a bend near the end the wind blew towards us and I lifted my arms in appreciation and he said "that's lovely, we need this behind us all the way back!".
Finally we approached a hill. The Marshall said "final push, I promise" so I picked it up and sprinted up and over the hill. As I passed the finish line I was delusional, I thought the timer said fifty-something minutes. I cheered and thought it must be right if the spoken reports from mapmyrun were anything to go by and cheered some more. But then I stopped running. And I was sick again, just like at North Weald only this time I was less shocked about it. I knew I'd pushed myself. A dear fellow runner bought me some water and asked f I needed a paramedic! I'd like to publicly thank her for her support. I told her I do this a lot which is a 3/4 truth - I've done it 66.6666 (reoccurring) percent of the time!
I checked my iPhone and was a bit perplexed. It said I'd done 5.8 miles in 52 minutes and I promise I didn't cut any corners. My husband said it's probably not accurate and soon after I got the official results and I got 59:52 mins! I was so happy! I got under 1 hr and for me that is amazing!
My next race is on Orlando, it's only 5km which I think will be challenging enough given the heat!